Florida leads in foreclosure rates

8 of 10 top cities with highest foreclosure rates are in Florida

Author: Matt Horn, Reporter, Capitol News Service
Published On: Dec 13 2013 04:28:03 PM EST
House prices, up arrow, money, taxes (generic 16x9)
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -

Foreclosure rates nationwide have fallen to the lowest since 2005, but Florida still has the highest rate in the country.

"It doesn't surprise me just because again the number of foreclosures that still need to get through the system, they've just been sitting there," said John Sebree with the Florida Realtors Association.

Sebree said there is a silver lining. The foreclosure rates in the state have dropped 40 percent since November a year ago.

"The number of foreclosure filings, which are brand new foreclosures that are entering the market are down significantly across the country and even more in Florida," Sebree said.

Eight of the top 10 cities with the highest foreclosure rates are in Florida. Legislation that took effect in July has slowed the process. That's when Gov. Rick Scott signed a Republican-driven bill to speed up foreclosures, but also require better loan documentation from banks.

"It's going to help make sure we have a timely foreclosure process, so our families make sure they can keep their homes," Scott said in June.

Anthony DiMarco with the Florida Bankers Association said the court process delays a foreclosure from beginning to end.

"Here, it's taking 800, 900 days when you go through the court system," said DiMarco.

As foreclosure rates drop, housing prices continue to increase, upwards of 20,000 foreclosures a month. However, there are still around 275,000 that need to be processed.