LOS ANGELES (AP) -- New data show that the U.S. is on track to end the year with the fewest homes repossessed by lenders in six years.
Foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac says lenders repossessed just under 37,000 U.S. homes last month.
That's down 31 percent from the same time last year, and up 4 percent from the month before.
At the monthly average so far this year, completed foreclosures are projected to total nearly 490,000 this year.
That would be 27 percent below 2012's total and the fewest foreclosures since 2007.
Foreclosures peaked in 2010 at 1.05 million.
Rising home prices and a gradually improving job market have helped limit the pace of homes first entering the foreclosure process.
Foreclosure starts posted an annual decline of 38 percent in July.