Florida Tops List of Most Foreclosures

Homeowners in Florida suffered more than those of any other state when the housing bubble collapsed. The aftershocks have not entirely gone away. Florida had a higher foreclosure rate than any other state in April.

Several states fared nearly as badly as Florida, according to research firm RealtyTrac, as its experts analyzed activity by state:

Despite a 6 percent year-over-year decrease in foreclosure filings, Florida still had the highest state foreclosure rate in April: one in every 425 housing units with a foreclosure filing — nearly 2.5 times the national average.


Other states with foreclosure rates among the top four highest nationwide posted increases in foreclosure activity: Nevada at No. 2 with foreclosure activity up 39 percent year-over-year; Maryland at No. 3 with foreclosure activity up 5 percent year-over-year; and New Jersey at No. 4 with foreclosure activity up 18 percent year-over-year.

If any state had a real estate price disaster during the recession as bad as Florida’s, it was Nevada, where in many cases home values dropped over 50%.

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It would make sense that, with Florida as the top state, many of its cities would be as well:

Of metro areas with a population of over 200,000, those with the highest foreclosure rates were Atlantic City, New Jersey (one in every 297), Jacksonville, Florida (one in every 341), Tampa, Florida (one in every 372), Daytona-Deltona Beach-Ormond Beach, Florida (one in every 378) and Miami, Florida (one in every 386).

A specific type of foreclose drop caused most of the problems:

RealtyTrac … released its April 2015 U.S. Foreclosure Market Report, which shows foreclosure filings — default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions — were reported on 125,875 U.S. properties in April of 2015, up 3 percent from the previous month and up 9 percent from a year ago, an 18-month high. The U.S. foreclosure rate in April was one in every 1,049 housing units with a foreclosure filing.

The increase in April was driven primarily by a jump in bank repossessions (REOs), which at 45,168 were up 25 percent from the previous month and up 50 percent from a year ago to a 27-month high. REOs increased on a year-over-year basis for the second consecutive month. The spike in April REOs is still 56 percent below the peak of 102,134 REOs in September 2013.

As has been true with other measures of recovery from the recession, which include unemployment, the numbers are not even and vary wildly from state to state.

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