DePaul Institute for Housing Studies

Foreclosure Filings Data

Why is foreclosure filings data important?

Foreclosure filings data can be used to understand the number and density of foreclosure filings activity in different communities and to assess the cumulative impact of the foreclosure crisis on properties and housing units. The level of foreclosure filing activity in a neighborhood relative to other areas is an indicator of distress in a local housing market.

IHS uses parcel-level foreclosure filings data in its Data Clearinghouse to:

Aggregated data are available on the IHS Data Portal for metro area counties, metro areas municipalities, Cook County subregions, Cook County municipalities, and City of Chicago wards and community areas.  For Cook County subregions and municipalities and City of Chicago community areas and wards, data are also available across property types. Data are available from 2005, allowing for analysis of trends in this indicator to be examined over time.

Subtypes available on the IHS Data Portal

  • Total Foreclosure Filings Activity. Total foreclosure filings in a given year are available for all residential properties.  In Cook County, data are broken out separately for total foreclosure filing activity in single family homes, condominium units, two-to-four unit buildings, and in buildings with five or more units.
  • Foreclosure Filings per 100 Residential Parcels. Per parcel filings activity allows for comparison of yearly filings activity across geographies.
  • Cumulative Foreclosure Filings Activity. This represents the cumulative percent of parcels impacted by foreclosure in a given area year-over-year since 2005.

About the Data

Data on foreclosure filings activity are collected from the county clerks of the court via Property Insight and from Record Information Services. The underlying data on foreclosure filings includes information on the filing date, the outstanding mortgage amount at filing, the plaintiff in the foreclosure case who is likely the servicer or trustee of the loan, and the defendant. IHS removes duplicate foreclosure filings on a property occurring within 180 days of each other. IHS then connects these data to information on the subject property using data from county assessor offices.

From a public data perspective, the foreclosure filing, or lis pendens, is the beginning of the foreclosure process in a judicial foreclosure state and typically occurs after a borrower is 90 days past due on their mortgage payment. In Illinois the approximate time a foreclosure can be completed is 12-15 months, during which time the borrower can avoid foreclosure by redeeming the terms of their loan through repayment, loan modification or refinance, or sell the property at short sale or in a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure agreement. Should the borrower not redeem, and a judge deems the debt valid, the property is put up for sale at foreclosure auction.