Among the 206 metro areas tracked in RealtyTrac's Q3 Metropolitan Foreclosure Market Report, 133 areas, or 65%, posted year-over-year increases in foreclosure activity. Cities in California, Florida, Nevada and Arizona again dominated the top-10 metro areas in terms of foreclosure activity, but cities outside of those four states saw many of the largest increases.
Seattle, Chicago and Houston posted the biggest jumps in foreclosure among the 20 largest metropolitan areas. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue posted a 71% increase in activity from the third quarter of 2009, Chicago-Naperville-Joliet activity rose 35% and Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown activity grew 26%.
The Detroit and Atlanta metro areas also saw big gains in foreclosure activity, growing 23% and 20% year-over-year, respectively.
"The underlying problems that are causing homeowners to miss their mortgage payments – high unemployment, underemployment, toxic loans and negative equity – are continuing to plague most local housing markets," says James J. Saccacio, CEO of RealtyTrac. "And these historically high foreclosure rates will continue until those problems are resolved."