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Drop in foreclosures could mean fewer low-priced properties

The number of foreclosures may be restricted in the coming months.

The number of foreclosures may be restricted in the coming months.

A significant drop in foreclosures during the month of November could lead to a shortage of discounted properties in the coming months, making it more difficult for moving families to take advantage of lower home prices.

A report from RealtyTrac shows that foreclosures dropped 21 percent from October to November, and was 14 percent below levels from November of last year.

"Foreclosure activity decreased dramatically in November, with fewer than 300,000 properties receiving a foreclosure notice for the first time since February 2009," said James J. Saccacio, chief executive officer at RealtyTrac. Saccacio added that there's usually a 7 to 10 percent drop-off each winter, but that the rest of the drop was due to the foreclosure paperwork controversy that forced many lenders to halt their procedures.

The report added that current distressed properties seem to be concentrated in a few parts of the country, with 10 states making up more than 70 percent of foreclosures.

Foreclosures can come at a significant price discount for those looking to buy a home. A report earlier this year by Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology found that those properties sold for values roughly 27 below what they would have otherwise.