Short sales continued to draw down foreclosure activity in July, which decreased by 3% from June and was down 10% year-over-year, thanks largely to a 21% annual drop in bank repossessions, according to RealtyTrac data released today.

Default notices were another story, however; while notice activity was down 6% from June, it was up 6% from the previous year, the third consecutive month of annual increases. On a more local level, 27 states saw starts bump up annually, led by dramatic increases in several states, including a 201% jump in Connecticut, a 164% spike in New Jersey, and a 139% increase in Pennsylvania, all of which are judicial foreclosure states.

"Recent foreclosure activity patterns vary significantly from state to state, often hinging on the level of dysfunction that exists in each state’s foreclosure process," said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac. "In states like Florida, Illinois, and New Jersey, where processing and procedural issues slowed foreclosure activity to a crawl last year, foreclosure numbers continue to rebound off those artificially low levels. But in states like Texas, Arizona, and Virginia, where the average time to foreclose is well below the national average of 378 days, foreclosure activity continues on a long-term downward trend."

See RealtyTrac’s full release discussing July’s foreclosure market report.

Claire Easley is a senior editor at Builder.