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Foreclosure filings fall in February

There was a 14 percent drop in distressed property filings last year.

There was a 14 percent drop in distressed property filings last year.

There was a lot of forward movement in the moving and housing market last month, but one place where activity froze was foreclosure filings.

According to RealtyTrac, there was a 14 percent decrease in distressed property filings last month compared to January and a 27 percent drop-off compared to February 2010.

Lower foreclosure numbers would seem to indicate the housing market is improving, but the chief executive officer for RealtyTrac says other factors may be at play.

"While a small part of February's decrease can be attributed to it being a short month and bad weather, the bottom line is that the industry is in the midst of a major overhaul that has severely restricted its capacity to process foreclosures," said James Saccacio, CEO of RealtyTrac. "We expect to see the numbers bounce back, but that will likely take several months. And monthly volume may never return to its peak in March 2010 of more than 367,000 properties receiving foreclosure filings."

Nevada bucked the trend and led the nation in distressed property levels once again, as one in every 119 Nevada housing units had a foreclosure filing in February. Nevertheless, the Las Vegas Association of Realtors says home sales increased.