New foreclosure lawsuits increased by double digits in South Florida during the first quarter, according to Attom Data Solutions. The Irvine, California-based company found 2,860 foreclosure lawsuits started in the tri-county area, up from 2,444 in the fourth quarter and 1,716 from the first quarter of 2018. That’s an increase of 17% and 67%, respectively.
Nationwide, foreclosure lawsuit starts increased 7% from the fourth quarter and fell 3% from the first quarter of 2018. However, Florida led all states with a 65% increase in foreclosure starts, year-over-year.
“While some markets saw a slight uptick in foreclosure filings, that is above pre-recession levels, the majority of the major markets are well below pre-recession levels,” said Todd Teta, chief product officer at Attom Data Solutions. “While we did see a slight increase in U.S. foreclosure starts from last quarter, bank repossessions reached an all-time low in the first quarter of 2019, showing continuing signs of a strong housing market.”
Foreclosure actions – counting lawsuit filings, notices of auction and repossession – numbered 5,537 in South Florida in the first quarter. That’s down 19 percent from the fourth quarter, but up 24 percent from the first quarter of 2018. There was one foreclosure action for every 453 homes, the 18th-highest foreclosure rate in the country.
The highest foreclosure rates were in Atlantic City, New Jersey (one in 177 homes); Lakeland (one in 338 homes); and Trenton, New Jersey (one in 345 homes).
original content South Florida Business Journal