Most large metro markets in the U.S. saw increased foreclosure activity in 2012, according to a report from foreclosure data aggregator RealtyTrac.
Of the 212 metro areas with populations of 200,000 or more watched by RealtyTrac, 120 (57 percent) saw the number of properties hit with foreclosure-related filings increase from 2011 to 2012.
Major metros seeing double-digit annual increases in foreclosure activity included Tampa (up 80 percent increase), Miami (36 percent), Baltimore (34 percent), Chicago (30 percent), and New York (28 percent).
Overall, foreclosure activity -- the number of properties subjected to default notices, schedule auctions, or bank repossessions -- declined by 2.7 percent from 2011 to 2012, a less dramatic reduction than last year's 36.1 percent annual decline.
Foreclosures peaked in most markets in 2010, RealtyTrac said, and 85 percent of large metros saw less foreclosure activity last year than in 2010.
RealtyTrac also identified what it thinks will be the top 20 metros to buy foreclosures in during 2013. That analysis, which considered only metro areas with a population of 500,000 or more, scored by months' supply of foreclosure inventory, percentage of foreclosure sales, average foreclosure discount, and percentage increase in foreclosure activity in 2012.
All but one of the 20 metro areas selected by the company as the best places to buy foreclosures in 2013 were located in states where courts typically handle the foreclosure process. The foreclosure process usually takes longer in judicial foreclosure states, and many courts in those states are still dealing with backlogs from the robo-signing scandal.
Florida and New York accounted for 11 of RealtyTrac's top 20 metros to buy foreclosures in, with the remainder in Illinois, Texas, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Connecticut or Indiana. All but Texas are judicial foreclosure states.
Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, Fla., topped the list followed by Rochester, N.Y.; Albany-Schenectady-Troy, N.Y.; and New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa. All 20 had seen an annual percentage increase in foreclosure activity in the double or triple digits in 2012.
RealtyTrac's 20 best places to buy foreclosures in 2013
|Metro area||Inventory months' supply||Foreclosure sales (Percentage of all sales)||Average foreclosure discount (percent)||Foreclosure activity (annual percentage change)|
|Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, Fla.||34||23.81||28.05||308.71|
|New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa.||97||7.7||40.35||27.91|
|Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Fla.||32||24.67||26.64||80.16|
|El Paso, Texas||15||8.79||17.8||93.42|
|Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, Fla.||29||28.7||30.58||36.17|
|New Haven-Milford, Conn.||9||13.66||41.87||54.18|
Metros in the West dominated among the 20 markets RealtyTrac considered the worst places to buy foreclosures in 2013. Half of those markets were in California and Utah, which are non-judicial foreclosures states. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, Texas had the lowest score, followed by Ogden-Clearfield, Utah; Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, Ark.; Las Vegas-Paradise, Nev.; and Salt Lake City, Utah. All saw double-digit year-over-year percentage declines in foreclosure activity last year.
RealtyTrac's 20 worst places to buy foreclosures in 2013
|Metro area||Inventory months' supply||Foreclosure sales (Percentage of all sales)||Average foreclosure discount (Percent)||Foreclosure activity (annual percentage change)|
|Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, Ark.||15||7.14||24.34||-48.64|
|Las Vegas-Paradise, Nev.||7||42.06||16.79||-56.97|
|Salt Lake City, Utah||19||17.67||13.37||-37.71|
|Boise City-Nampa, Idaho||13||16.64||18.98||-27.55|
|Buffalo-Niagara Falls, N.Y.||37||2.41||32.92||-42.97|
|San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, Calif.||9||25.96||42.77||-36.13|
|Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, Calif.||11||37.5||20.39||-23.66|
|Austin-Round Rock, Texas||13||7.97||44.58||-19.74|
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