Great Foreclosure News, Except for Florida and California — RealtyTrac

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Foreclosure trends have continued to improve for homeowners with troubled loans, another sign that housing has begun to mend. Most recent information on the market that has been crippled since 2006 show things have started to get better. Housing starts, home sales and home prices have ticked higher, based on national data. However, new information from RealtyTrac shows that regional markets that suffered the most catastrophic damage may not recover for years.

RealtyTrac reported that:

[F]or foreclosure properties and real estate data, (RealtyTrac) today released its U.S. Foreclosure Market Report for January 2013, which shows foreclosure filings — default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions — were reported on 150,864 U.S. properties in January, a decrease of 7 percent from the previous month and down 28 percent from January 2012. The report also shows one in every 869 U.S. housing units with a foreclosure filing during the month.

The information showed that national foreclosure activity reached a six-year low last month.

But national data on income, unemployment, poverty, health and housing have very limited value as a means to assess the scope of the recovery. In some states, economic trouble has barely moved above what it was in the worst of the recession. Foreclosure data is some proof of that. The new RealtyTrac report shows:

The Florida foreclosure rate ranked highest among the states for the fifth month in a row. One in every 300 Florida housing units had a foreclosure filing in January — more than twice the national average. A total of 29,800 Florida properties had a foreclosure filing during the month, up 12 percent from the previous month and up 20 percent from January 2012.

With one in every 344 housing units with a foreclosure filing in January, Nevada posted the nation’s second highest foreclosure rate for the fourth consecutive month. Overall Nevada foreclosure activity decreased 43 percent from a year ago, but foreclosure starts (NODs) increased 19 percent from the previous month and were up 87 percent from January 2012 to a 16-month high.

A 32 percent month-over-month jump in scheduled foreclosure auctions helped the Illinois foreclosure rate rise to third highest among the states in January. One in every 375 Illinois housing units had a foreclosure filing during the month.

The situations are nearly as bad in California, Michigan, Ohio and Arizona. RealtyTrac analysts say that even these markets have gotten somewhat better. However, when one in 300 “housing units” have foreclosure filings, progress to reach the current national average will take years.

The housing recovery has picked up speed, with the exception of the states where it has not.

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