/ Modified apr 10, 2013 7:45 p.m.

AZ Foreclosure Filings Continue Decline

National filings for March lowest in 5 1/2 years

Home foreclosure filings fell in Arizona and nationally again in March from a year ago, although they nudged up from February in the state, a foreclosed house marketing company reported Thursday.

RealtyTrac Inc. of Irvine, Calif., reported 4,257 filings in the state in March, down 55.2 percent from March 2012 but up 6.5 percent from February.

RealtyTrac defines a foreclosure filing as one of three stages in foreclosure - a default notice, scheduled auction and bank repossession - and thus one property could have more than one filing recorded against it. The numerical total, then, does not necessarily reflect the number of properties foreclosed upon.

Arizona's foreclosure filings in March ranked it seventh worst in the country, better than it has been since the start of the housing crash five years ago.

Nationally, foreclosure filings fell 23.3 percent in March from the previous year, and were down 1.2 percent from February.

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