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Florida Foreclosures Intensify

U.S. foreclosures up 2% between April and May

June 13, 2013

By Mortgage Daily staff

As U.S. foreclosure activity expanded, Florida has established itself as the absolute worst state for foreclosures no matter what metric is applied.

Mortgage loan servicers lifted foreclosure activity last month, with at least one filing made on 148,054 U.S. properties, according to RealtyTrac's U.S. Foreclosure Market Report for May 2013.

Filings include notices of default and lis penden; notices of trustee's sale and notices of foreclosure sale; and real estate owned properties that have been repossessed.

In April, filings were made on 144,790 properties -- a 75-month low.

Foreclosures have slowed considerably from May 2012, when 205,990 properties were hit with a filing.

Florida maintained its perch atop the state ranking with 29,606 total filings in May, jumping from 24,656 the previous month.

No. 2 California moved up to 17,069 foreclosures from 16,161 in April.

Ohio followed with 8,770 properties that were hit with a foreclosure, then 8,715 in Illinois and 5,862 in Georgia.

North Dakota was at the bottom of the list with only 10 filings.

U.S. foreclosures up 2% between April and May

The 72,698 U.S. foreclosures started in May were more than the 70,133 that were initiated the prior month.

Florida was the location of 12,273 foreclosure starts last month, surging from 8,822 in April.

In California, 8,846 foreclosures were started, followed by 4,113 in Texas, 4,021 in Illinois and 3,789 in Georgia.

The U.S. foreclosure rate was one filing for each 885 housing units last month., not quite as good as the one-in-905 rate previously reported for April.

But the national rate has improved from a year earlier, when a foreclosure was being filed on each 639 homes.

At one filing for every 302 housing units, Florida's rate was higher than any other state. It was also worse than the one-in-363 rate a month earlier.

Florida had to contend with Miami, which had the highest foreclosure rate -- one-in-209 -- among metropolitan areas with at least 200,000 people. In addition, another five Florida cities were among the 10-worst in the nation.

Nevada was next with a one-in-305 rate. Las Vegas was the fourth-worst metropolitan area with one filing for each 296 housing units, while Reno also was on the top-10 list.

After that was one-in-584 in Ohio, one-in-587 in Maryland and one-in-600 in South Carolina.

"The foreclosure problem continued to shift away from non-judicial states and toward judicial states," RealtyTrac said. "Judicial states accounted for five of the top six foreclosure rates nationwide."

Just one foreclosure was filed for each 31,552 North Dakota housing units.

Servicers completed 38,946 U.S. foreclosures in May, worse than 34,997 the prior month but better than May 2011, when 54,844 foreclosures were completed.

"Among the five lenders involved in last year's national mortgage settlement, all but one (Citi) posted monthly increases in REO activity," the report stated, "indicating that temporary stoppages of foreclosure sales announced during the month by some of the lenders involved in the settlement had little lasting impact on the number of completed foreclosures for the month."

Florida took the triple crown with 7,230 real-estate-owned filings. Like with the other categories, the Sunshine State worsened from April, when there were 6,344 repossessions.

Ohio's 2,770 REO filings was the second-worst showing. But the Buckeye State slowed from 3,029 REOs in April.

Michigan had 2,360 completed foreclosures, landing it in the No. 3 spot, then 2,073 in Georgia and 2,028 in California.

Washington, D.C.'s, six completed foreclosures were fewer than in any state.

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