The Top 10 Foreclosure States in the U.S.
By Christine DiGangi
For a brief moment this year, Florida was not the state with the highest foreclosure rate. Maryland relieved Florida of that dubious honor in October after foreclosure activity in the state surged, but a 31.1 percent decline in Maryland foreclosures from October to November was enough to push Florida back to the top, despite declines in that state as well.
Foreclosures have declined from their peak, but Florida has had the top foreclosure rate among the 50 states for 13 of the past 14 months. One in every 462 housing units in Florida was in some state of foreclosure in November, down 3.9 percent from October and down 14.75 percent from November 2013, according to the monthly U.S. foreclosure report from RealtyTrac.
Here are the states that had the highest rate of foreclosure filings in November:
10. South Carolina
1 in 933 housing units
Foreclosure activity declined 28.66 percent since November 2013 and 12.74 percent from October 2014, allowing South Carolina to drop from its No. 8 spot in the October foreclosure rankings. Foreclosure starts in South Carolina dropped 28 percent from last year.
1 in 932 housing units
Foreclosure starts increased 23.36 percent from October and 54.6 percent from November 2013, but overall foreclosure activity declined 18.25 percent month over month and increased just 2.01 percent from last year in Indiana. As a result, Indiana fell from its October place at No. 7 to the ninth-highest foreclosure rate.
1 in 865 housing units
In October, Ohio had the fourth-highest foreclosure rate in the country, but a 22.06 percent decline in foreclosure filings from October to November allowed the state to drop to eighth place. Year over year, Ohio’s foreclosure rate declined 12.35 percent.
1 in 848 housing units
Illinois also saw a slide in foreclosure filings, dropping 16.09 percent and two spots from October. The November foreclosure rate is down 17.33 percent from the same time last year, and foreclosure starts dropped 28.11 percent in the same period, which was the eighth-largest year-over-year drop.
1 in 783 housing units
Nevada’s foreclosure rate increased 10.73 percent since November 2013, despite a 23.91 percent drop in foreclosures from October of this year. Foreclosure starts skyrocketed 138.41 percent from November 2013, but the monthly changes bumped Nevada from No. 4 in October to No. 6 on this most recent list.
1 in 750 housing units
Utah wasn’t on the top 10 list in October, but monthly and annual increases in foreclosure activity pushed the state up in the rankings. Foreclosure filings increased 27.54 percent from October to November, and the year-over-year increase was 19.82 percent, driven mostly by new notices of default.
1 in 693 housing units
Foreclosure filings in Delaware declined significantly (down 30.15 percent) from November 2013, but a slight increase from October (up 8.52 percent) moved the state from the sixth-highest to the fourth-highest foreclosure rate in the country last month.
1 in 581 housing units
Maryland was No. 1 in October after its foreclosure activity spiked 68 percent in a month and 30 percent in a year, but a 31.1 percent decline in filings from October to November let Maryland settle into the rankings two spots lower.
2. New Jersey
1 in 478 housing units
New Jersey foreclosure activity surged in November, up 196.06 percent from the same time last year. The month-to-month change in foreclosure filings (up 83.58 percent) moved New Jersey from No. 9 in October to No. 2 in November’s rankings. Foreclosure starts spiked 256.18 percent from last year.
1 in 462 housing units
Foreclosure activity is actually down in Florida, but the 3.9 percent decline from October wasn’t enough to keep it off the top of the list, especially after Maryland’s significant drop in activity. Foreclosure filings decreased 14.75 percent and foreclosure starts dropped 24.35 percent from November 2013.
Going through foreclosure is a challenging time for any homeowner, emotionally and financially, but as devastating as it can be to lose your home, there are ways to recover. In the immediate aftermath of foreclosure, focus on the other aspects of your finances and credit that you can control, like paying bills on time and keeping your debt levels as low as possible. Eventually, you may see your credit score recover from the foreclosure. Meanwhile, check your credit reports to make sure they’re accurate and review your credit scores regularly to track your progress. You can get two of your credit scores with updates every 30 days for free on Credit.com.