Chicago’s foreclosure rate 4th highest among top 20 metro areas

RealtyTrac just released its US Foreclosure Market Report for November 2014, which shows foreclosure filings — default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions — were reported on 112,498 U.S. properties in November, a decrease of 9 percent from the previous month and down 1 percent from a year ago. November was the 50th consecutive month with a year-over-year decrease in overall foreclosure activity. The report also shows one in every 1,170 U.S. housing units with a foreclosure filing during the month.

A total of 55,906 US properties started the foreclosure process in November, a decrease of 1 percent from the previous month but a 6 percent increase from a year ago, the first year-over-year increase following 27 consecutive months of year-over-year decreases.

Five of the nation’s 20 largest metro areas posted year-over-year increases in foreclosure activity: New York (up 71 percent), Houston (up 70 percent), Philadelphia (up 43 percent), Boston (up 27 percent) and Baltimore (up 22 percent).

Among the nation’s 20 largest metros, those with the five highest foreclosure rates were Miami (one in every 394 housing units with a foreclosure filing), Tampa (one in every 432 housing units), Baltimore (one in every 576 housing units), Philadelphia (one in every 625 housing units), Chicago (one in every 716 housing units) and Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario in Southern California (one in every 725 housing units).

“The housing market is struggling to find the new normal when it comes to a tolerable level of foreclosure activity in this post-Great Recession economy,” said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac. “Finding that new normal requires striking a balance between too much loan risk, which would result in another housing meltdown, and too little risk, which could result in a stunted recovery.

“Foreclosure rates on 2014-originated loans are actually higher than 2013-originated loans nationwide and in many markets, indicating that lenders are open to a slightly higher level of risk than we’ve seen over the past five years of extremely tight lending standards,” Blomquist continued. “But it’s unlikely that lenders will dial up that risk level too quickly going forward given that many are still dealing with working through a lengthy and messy foreclosure process on risky loans from the last loose lending spree.”

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