Special Report

Cities with the Most Abandoned Homes

10. Lakeland, Fla.
> Pct. foreclosures vacated: 27.7%
> Total vacated homes: 2,010
> Median home price: $90,000 (13th lowest)

Nearly 28% of homes in foreclosure in the Lakeland area are vacant. Among the possible reasons why homeowners gave up on their properties is the 41.7% housing price drop from the end of 2007 through the end of 2012, one of the worst declines in the nation.The foreclosure process in Florida takes nearly 900 days on average, among the most in the nation. This may also be an explanation for why so many homeowners in foreclosure have moved out.

Also Read: States with the Fastest Growing Economies

9. Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Ga.
> Pct. foreclosures vacated: 28.1%
> Total vacated homes: 3,071
> Median home price: $145,600 (48th lowest)

Home prices in Atlanta fell by 26% from the end of 2007 to the end of last year. This figure might have been far worse if not for the 10% home value increase in home value between the fourth quarters of 2011 and 2012. But the improvement in prices last year — as well as the 42% year-over-year decline in foreclosures during the first quarter — came too late for many home owners. According to RealtyTrac, of the 10,931 homes in foreclosure in the area, roughly 28% have been vacated.

8. Boise City-Nampa, Idaho
> Pct. foreclosures vacated: 28.2%
> Total vacated homes: 361
> Median home price: $94,001 (15th lowest)

The median home price in Boise was just $94,001 in April, and foreclosure activity fell by nearly 37% from the year before during the first quarter of 2013. The homes in the area are fairly inexpensive, yet many are still in foreclosure or have even been abandoned. Home prices in Boise are down by 31.1% from the end of 2007 to the end of 2012, despite a rebound during 2012.

7. Detroit-Warren-Livonia, Mich.
> Pct. foreclosures vacated: 28.7%
> Total vacated homes: 1,000
> Median home price: $75,000 (7th lowest)

Several positive signs suggest that the housing market in the Detroit area has recovered considerably. Home prices fell nearly 36% between 2007 and the end of 2012, a period that covers much of the U.S. housing crisis and recession. But from the end of 2009 to the end of 2012, prices rose at a faster clip than any other major metro area. Still, the Detroit area has suffered from massive population declines and the city proper is on the brink of bankruptcy as many residents and homeowners have left. Few metro areas have lower home prices than Detroit, where the median home price was just $75,000 in April.

6. Las Vegas-Paradise, Nev.
> Pct. foreclosures vacated: 28.8%
> Total vacated homes: 3,089
> Median home price: $146,357 (49th lowest)

Home prices in the Las Vegas area fell between the fourth quarter of 2007 and the fourth quarter of 2012 by 47.7%, more than in any other metro area. But even with a 17.6% decline in foreclosure activity in the first quarter of this year — better than about half of the nation’s large metro areas — Las Vegas remains a hub for foreclosures. Also in the first quarter of 2013, nearly 8,400 properties had foreclosure filings against them, while at last count there were roughly 10,700 total homes in foreclosure. The relatively long foreclosure process of 447 days on average may also lead to homeowners ditching their properties.

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