1 Out of Every 194 Received a Foreclosure Filing

by : Daniel Doane

RealtyTrac reported that nearly 650,000 foreclosure filings - which include notices of default, auction sales and bank repossessions - were issued in the first quarter. That represents 1 of every 194 households and marks a 23% increase from the last quarter of 2007.

"Foreclosure activity hasn't slowed down yet," said Rick Sharga, spokesman for RealtyTrac. "But I was a little surprised that foreclosure filings more than doubled since last year."

Foreclosures increased in 46 states and in 90 of the nation's 100 largest metro areas. Some regions that had been only marginally hurt by the mortgage meltdown recorded large increases in filings. In Connecticut, for instance, filings tripled compared with the first three months of 2007. Massachusetts recorded a 260% increase.
Hardest hit in the Southwest; Nevada, California and Arizona lead the nation in foreclosure filings.

In the first quarter, one in every 54 Nevada households received some type of foreclosure filing - more than any other state. Its largest city, Las Vegas, had 1 out of every 44 homes go into foreclosure.

California's Stockton led all cities with one out of every 30 homes receiving a notice - nearly seven times higher than the national average. Riverside/San Bernardino region had the second highest rate in the quarter, with one of every 38 homes in default.

The news comes despite increased foreclosure efforts by lenders and community organizations. With over half a million home owners helped avoiding foreclosure during the first quarter of the year. With hard money loans, lender work out programs from loan mortification programs community programs. Lawmakers in Washington, D.C. are at work with other plans that would help relief for distressed homeowners.

"Foreclosure activity in the first quarter increased on a year-over-year basis in 46 out of the 50 states and in 90 of the nation's 100 largest metro areas, demonstrating that most regions of the country are seeing more foreclosures. The record number of hybrid adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) - worth $362 billion - will reset in 2008. "We expect to see another foreclosure peak because the record number of resets coming in the third or fourth quarter of 2008." All of these foreclosure prevention efforts may not be able to stand up to the tsunami of foreclosures on the way." said RealtyTrac CEO James J. Saccacio.'

Passed on April 1, 2008
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Daniel Doane