Your foreclosure hotspots await

While the U.S. market shows signs of recovery, there is still time for investors to snap up a foreclosed property south of the border.

The RealtyTrac 2012 Year-End report on foreclosures was revealed yesterday, with Florida cities holding onto the top spots in this dubious ranking.

The report surveyed 212 metropolitan areas with a population of at least 200,000. According to the report, foreclosure activity was up 57 per cent from 2011, with improvements marked in 120 of the surveyed markets. But the level of foreclosure activity dipped from 2010, which was the peak for most markets.

Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac says the improvements were expected as U.S. cities recover from the housing correction.

“Markets with increasing foreclosure activity in 2012 took the first step in finally purging delayed distress left over from the bursting housing bubble,” he said. “Meanwhile, the underlying fundamentals in many of those markets are slowly improving, making it an opportune time to absorb additional foreclosure inventory this year — and that is particularly good news for buyers and investors hungry for more inventory to purchase in those markets.”

Activity was down in popular haunts for Canadian investors such as Phoenix and Detroit, down 37 per cent and 26 per cent respectively. But Florida remained strong, with foreclosure activity rising 80 percent in Tampa and 36 percent in Miami. In fact, Florida cities made up 8 of the 20 highest metro foreclosure rates. Orlando, Jacksonville and Cape Coral-Fort Myers all ranked highly. Cities such as Atlanta, Chicago and Las Vegas weren’t far behind.
So where should investors look to snap up foreclosed properties in 2013? According to RealtyTrac, there are still several deals to be had in the Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville area of Florida. The report reveals the area has a 34-month supply of inventory, and almost a quarter of all sales are foreclosed properties with an average discount of 28 per cent. Foreclosure activity was up 308 per cent in 2012 from 2011.

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