Foreclosures have plummeted in the Phoenix area since the peak of the housing crisis.

Lenders took back a record 5,100 homes in the metro area in March 2010, but only 697 homes were the subjects of foreclosures last month.

The Arizona Republic reported that short sales also are way down from last year's peak as home prices have increased steadily from the September 2011 low point during the crash.

The number of foreclosures in the metro area started escalating in 2008 after home prices began to fall and the economy dropped into a recession.

Government-backed loan modifications helped some homeowners hold on in 2009, but foreclosures were soaring by 2010.