LOS ANGELES (AP) -- New foreclosure data show that lenders took possession of more homes in May than in the previous month and initiated the foreclosure countdown clock on many others.
The monthly pick up in bank-owned homes follows a rise in properties entering the foreclosure process last year.
Foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday that completed foreclosures jumped 11 percent nationally in May from April.
Home repossessions were down 29 percent from May last year, reflecting the long-term downward trend.
Foreclosure starts rose 4 percent from April, but fell 33 percent from May 2012.
The rise in home repossessions means more bank-owned homes could soon hit a housing market thirsty for more available homes for sale.
But it could also slow down home price gains in the short term.