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By Patrick Anderson
PBN Staff Writer
PROVIDENCE – Year over year, foreclosure filings in the Providence-Fall River-New Bedford area fell 22 percent in the first half of 2012 - and 32 percent in June - compared with the same periods in 2011, RealtyTrac said Thursday.
The declines were a result of lenders continuing to throttle back foreclosure proceedings in Rhode Island, a trend that started early last year.
In the first half of 2012, there were 2,022 Ocean State foreclosure filings, which include both foreclosure sale notices and bank repossessions, down from 2,789 in the second half of 2011 and 3,095 in the first half of 2011.
The foreclosure slowdown was even more dramatic in June, when total filings in Rhode Island dropped 51 percent year over year, from 711 to 348. Foreclosure initiations fell even more in June, 66 percent year over year, than repossessions.
The declines in the Rhode Island part of the area were in contrast to Bristol County, Mass., where foreclosure filings in June rose 41 percent compared with the same period last year.
For the first half of 2012 Bristol County foreclosures increased 15 percent compared with the same period last year, from 1,078 to 1,241.
The disparity between Massachusetts and Rhode Island has been attributed to the Bay State’s foreclosure process, which requires judicial approval of many foreclosures, and the fact that Rhode Island saw so many foreclosures at the outset of the subprime crisis.