States With the Most Foreclosed Homes

June 9, 2017 by Mike Sauter

Source: Thinkstock
During the height of the Great Recession, foreclosures in the United States reached staggeringly high levels. In 2009, about one in every 45 American households were in the process of losing their homes due to an inability to make payments. With the return of home prices to pre-recession levels, and in many cases higher, the foreclosure rate has also dropped dramatically. Just one in every 142 homes were in foreclosure in 2016.

Just as the housing market recovery has been anything but even across the country, so too have foreclosure declined at varying degrees depending on the region. In 2016, state foreclosure rates ranged from one home in every 1,559 to one in every 54. In every state, foreclosures affect — and are affected by — home values, incomes, and the strength of the regional economy.

ATTOM Data Solutions, a real estate data analytics company, provided 24/7 Wall St. with the share of housing units in each state that were in some stage of the foreclosure process during 2016.

Click here to see the foreclosure rates of all 50 states.
Click here to see our detailed findings and methodology.

North Dakota (field)

50. North Dakota
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 1,559 (the lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 213 (the fewest)
> Median home value: $180,900 (23rd highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 11.8% (2nd largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 4.6% (6th lowest)

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Mount Rushmore, South Dakota

49. South Dakota
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 1,172 (2nd lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 315 (2nd fewest)
> Median home value: $152,800 (17th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 7.4% (14th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: N/A

Wheeling, West Virginia

48. West Virginia
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 809 (3rd lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 1,092 (7th fewest)
> Median home value: $112,100 (the lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 7.9% (12th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 8.5% (25th highest)

Helena, Montana

47. Montana
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 679 (4th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 717 (4th fewest)
> Median home value: $209,500 (20th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 6.5% (22nd largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 4.8% (8th lowest)

Montpelier, Vermont 2

46. Vermont
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 621 (5th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 522 (3rd fewest)
> Median home value: $223,700 (17th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 4.2% (16th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 5.0% (10th lowest)

Two seaplanes parked at a harbor, Ketchikan, Alaska

45. Alaska
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 391 (6th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 788 (5th fewest)
> Median home value: $259,600 (11th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 2.0% (2nd smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 3.9% (2nd lowest)

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Jackson, ,Mississippi

44. Mississippi
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 376 (7th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 3,419 (13th fewest)
> Median home value: $112,700 (2nd lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 8.4% (10th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 4.6% (4th lowest)

Omaha, Nebraska

43. Nebraska
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 330 (8th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 2,438 (8th fewest)
> Median home value: $141,600 (12th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 5.8% (25th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 7.2% (22nd lowest)

Wichita, Kansas

42. Kansas
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 300 (9th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 4,132 (15th fewest)
> Median home value: $141,200 (11th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 6.9% (17th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 5.0% (13th lowest)

Wyoming

41. Wyoming
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 293 (10th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 904 (6th fewest)
> Median home value: $212,500 (19th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 5.7% (24th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 5.1% (15th lowest)

Downtown Boise Idaho just after sundown with Capital building

40. Idaho
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 272 (11th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 2,481 (9th fewest)
> Median home value: $176,300 (24th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 6.7% (21st largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 5.0% (12th lowest)

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Fayetteville, Arkansas

39. Arkansas
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 259 (12th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 5,128 (16th fewest)
> Median home value: $120,700 (3rd lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 7.3% (16th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 11.3% (14th highest)

Canoe in for the Day, Minnesota

38. Minnesota
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 259 (13th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 9,140 (23rd fewest)
> Median home value: $200,000 (21st highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 6.2% (23rd largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 4.9% (9th lowest)

Denver, Colorado 3

37. Colorado
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 244 (14th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 9,158 (24th fewest)
> Median home value: $283,800 (8th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 11.2% (3rd largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 5.0% (11th lowest)

Louisville, Kentucky

36. Kentucky
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 244 (15th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 7,943 (21st fewest)
> Median home value: $130,000 (5th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 5.0% (18th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 7.2% (23rd lowest)

Aerial view of downtown New Orleans, Louisiana

35. Louisiana
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 237 (16th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 8,404 (22nd fewest)
> Median home value: $155,600 (18th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 8.4% (11th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 16.4% (4th highest)

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New Hampshire covered bridge

34. New Hampshire
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 232 (17th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 2,665 (10th fewest)
> Median home value: $244,500 (13th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 3.4% (10th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 6.8% (21st lowest)

Texas bluebonnet field and fence in spring

33. Texas
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 222 (18th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 45,807 (6th most)
> Median home value: $152,000 (16th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 8.9% (8th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 5.5% (16th lowest)

Des Moines, Iowa

32. Iowa
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 204 (19th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 6,596 (19th fewest)
> Median home value: $136,100 (8th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 2.3% (5th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 8.6% (23rd highest)

Downtown Madison, Wisconsin

31. Wisconsin
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 198 (20th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 13,333 (23rd most)
> Median home value: $168,300 (22nd lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 2.2% (4th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 9.6% (19th highest)

St. Louis, Missouri 3

30. Missouri
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 192 (21st lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 14,150 (20th most)
> Median home value: $147,800 (13th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 6.7% (19th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 14.5% (5th highest)

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Maine

29. Maine
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 192 (22nd lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 3,779 (14th fewest)
> Median home value: $180,300 (tied-24th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 3.1% (8th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 7.6% (24th lowest)

Detroit, Michigan ducks

28. Michigan
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 189 (23rd lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 23,958 (12th most)
> Median home value: $137,500 (10th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 9.4% (7th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 13.9% (6th highest)

Tulsa, Oklahoma

27. Oklahoma
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 178 (24th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 9,443 (25th fewest)
> Median home value: $126,800 (4th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 5.8% (25th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 9.4% (20th highest)

Seattle, Washington

26. Washington
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 176 (25th lowest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 16,554 (19th most)
> Median home value: $284,000 (7th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 6.7% (20th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 5.1% (14th lowest)

Landmark Bixby Creek Bridge in Big Sur, California

25. California
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 175 (25th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 78,646 (2nd most)
> Median home value: $449,100 (2nd highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 8.8% (9th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 5.9% (18th lowest)

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Portland Oregon

24. Oregon
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 173 (24th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 9,733 (25th most)
> Median home value: $264,100 (10th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 10.1% (5th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 4.4% (3rd lowest)

Lynchburg, Virginia, USA Skyline

23. Virginia
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 171 (23rd highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 19,912 (14th most)
> Median home value: $257,800 (12th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 4.0% (14th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 6.3% (19th lowest)

Knoxville, Tennessee

22. Tennessee
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 169 (22nd highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 16,806 (18th most)
> Median home value: $150,600 (15th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 5.4% (21st smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 9.4% (21st highest)

waikiki beach and diamond head in honolulu hawaii

21. Hawaii
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 169 (21st highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 3,114 (12th fewest)
> Median home value: $566,900 (the highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 7.4% (15th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 5.6% (17th lowest)

Greensboro, North Carolina Skyline

20. North Carolina
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 165 (20th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 26,528 (11th most)
> Median home value: $160,100 (20th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 3.3% (9th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 9.1% (22nd highest)

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Sedona in Arizona,USA

19. Arizona
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 163 (19th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 17,651 (17th most)
> Median home value: $194,300 (22nd highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 10.0% (6th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 10.6% (15th highest)

Mobile, Alabama

18. Alabama
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 158 (18th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 13,846 (21st most)
> Median home value: $134,100 (7th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 6.8% (18th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 9.8% (17th highest)

Salt Lake City, Utah

17. Utah
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 153 (17th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 6,541 (18th fewest)
> Median home value: $234,600 (16th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 5.1% (19th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 4.6% (5th lowest)

Bristol County, Rhode Island

16. Rhode Island
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 152 (16th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 3,048 (11th fewest)
> Median home value: $241,000 (14th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 2.1% (3rd smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 8.6% (24th highest)

Massachusetts

15. Massachusetts
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 145 (15th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 19,490 (16th most)
> Median home value: $352,100 (3rd highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 3.9% (12th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 4.7% (7th lowest)

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Forsyth Park in Savannah, Georgia

14. Georgia
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 142 (14th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 29,038 (10th most)
> Median home value: $159,300 (19th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 7.7% (13th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 11.6% (12th highest)

New York Columbus Circle

13. New York
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 137 (13th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 59,402 (4th most)
> Median home value: $293,500 (6th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 5.2% (20th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 7.7% (25th lowest)

Indianapolis, Indiana

12. Indiana
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 129 (12th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 21,786 (13th most)
> Median home value: $131,000 (6th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 5.4% (22nd smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 11.9% (11th highest)

Philadelphia at night, Pennsylvania

11. Pennsylvania
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 128 (11th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 43,506 (8th most)
> Median home value: $170,600 (23rd lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 3.1% (7th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 10.5% (16th highest)

Ghost Ranch, New Mexico

10. New Mexico
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 128 (10th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 7,099 (20th fewest)
> Median home value: $164,100 (21st lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 3.6% (11th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 6.7% (20th lowest)

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Cincinnati, Ohio

9. Ohio
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 112 (9th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 45,801 (7th most)
> Median home value: $136,400 (9th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 5.7% (23rd smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 17.1% (2nd highest)

Skyline of Hartford Connecticut on a beautiful sunny day

8. Connecticut
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 109 (8th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 13,621 (22nd most)
> Median home value: $270,900 (9th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 1.4% (the smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 11.6% (13th highest)

Greenville, South Carolina

7. South Carolina
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 109 (7th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 19,784 (15th most)
> Median home value: $148,600 (14th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 6.1% (24th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 9.6% (18th highest)

Las Vegas Strip at night - high vantage, Nevada

6. Nevada
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 92 (6th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 12,872 (24th most)
> Median home value: $221,400 (18th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 15.3% (the largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 18.9% (the highest)

Chicago, Illinois 4

5. Illinois
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 91 (5th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 58,197 (5th most)
> Median home value: $180,300 (tied-24th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 4.9% (17th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 16.5% (3rd highest)

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Orlando, Florida Cityscape

4. Florida
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 85 (4th highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 106,901 (the most)
> Median home value: $179,800 (25th lowest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 10.5% (4th largest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 13.9% (7th highest)

Baltimore, Maryland 3

3. Maryland
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 73 (3rd highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 32,988 (9th most)
> Median home value: $299,800 (5th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 3.9% (13th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 13.0% (9th highest)

Wilmington, Delaware Memorial Bridge

2. Delaware
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 66 (2nd highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 6,190 (17th fewest)
> Median home value: $240,200 (15th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 4.2% (15th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 13.3% (8th highest)

Newark at night, New Jersey

1. New Jersey
> Foreclosure rate: 1 in every 54 (the highest)
> Housing units in foreclosure 2016: 66,592 (3rd most)
> Median home value: $322,600 (4th highest)
> 5-yr. home value change: 3.0% (6th smallest increase)
> Homes seriously underwater: 12.3% (10th highest)

Detailed Findings and Methodology

During the recession, areas with rapidly declining home values also usually had much higher foreclosure rates. Since then, the relationship has persisted — With the return of home prices to pre-recession levels, the foreclosure rate has also dropped dramatically.

Nationally, the typical U.S. home is worth about 7% more today than it was in 2009. In all but four of the 20 states with the higher foreclosure rates, home prices rose less than the 7% during that time.

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Daren Blomquist, senior vice president with ATTOM Data Solutions explained that the correlation between home prices and foreclosures is due to a number of factors. “In Areas that lingering high foreclosure rates, [those rates] hold down home values…” Blomquist continued: “The lingering high foreclosure rates create uncertainty in those housing markets, and so it holds home prices rates down, and as those foreclosures sell, they’re typically selling at a discounted price.”

Those mortgages with severe debt are at risk of finding themselves underwater. This means the amount of money owed on the home exceeds the total value of the property. In general, the states which have the highest foreclosure rates also tend to have the largest share of homes that are seriously underwater, meaning that the debt owed on the home is at least 125% of the value of the property.

As recently as the fourth quarter of 2013, over one in four homes were seriously underwater. That has declined to less than 10%. In 16 states, more than 10% of homes are underwater. Of those, 11 states are in the top 15 for foreclosure rates. In Nevada, which has the sixth highest foreclosure rate, about 19% of homes are seriously underwater.

Blomquist explained why the relationship seems to hold – “If you have equity in your home, you probably at least have the option of selling and avoiding foreclosure. But if you’re underwater, more likely you won’t have that option, and you’re going to have to go into foreclosure.”

To determine the states with the most foreclosed homes, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed state-level foreclosure rates provided by ATTOM Data Solutions, a real estate data analytics company. Foreclosure rates used in the rank refer to housing units that were in some stage of the foreclosure process in 2016. ATTOM’s estimates for the population and the number of housing units, as well as figures for median home value come from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Consumer Survey. The most recent available data from the ACS is 2015. ATTOM also provided 24/7 Wall St. with the share of mortgages that are seriously underwater — meaning debt is 125% or more the value of the home.