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Real estate market data company says foreclosures may spike again

While attorneys general of many states continue to negotiate settlements with major loan servicing companies over the "robo-signing" scandal, banks appear posed to aggressively resume foreclosures across the country, according to RealtyTrac. The real estate market company predicts that as many as 1 million homes may be seized in foreclosure proceedings in 2012 after a lull in foreclosures that kept the number of seized homes down last year.

RealtyTrac says just over 804,000 properties were subject to foreclosure last year, but that number can be expected to jump about 25 percent in 2012. Some of the reason the data company thinks foreclosures may spike this year is because banks held off on foreclosing roughly 400,000 mortgages last year.

However, a spokesman for the real estate data company says it appears banks have already begun to ramp up the rate of foreclosures. The spokesman says foreclosures began to increase during the second half of 2010, and he expects the trend to continue this year.

Last year, one in 69 United States homes received filing last year. Roughly 1.89 million homes were under distress and received a notice of default, auction or repossession. That number represents a drop of 34 percent from the numbers reported in 2010 and the lowest number since the market began to collapse in 2007. RealtyTrac says foreclosure filings reached 2.7 million last year because some properties received multiple notices.

News about the economy continues to show conflicting signs of the direction the economy may be taking, with news of potential increases in foreclosures suggesting a continuing sluggish market and other stories saying the unemployment rate continues to fall. Overall statistics do not necessarily suggest the situation in any given household in Ohio.

Cincinnati bankruptcy lawyers are aware that financial distress in an individual household can be difficult for any Ohio resident. Distressed homeowners can speak with an experienced bankruptcy attorney to learn how the bankruptcy code can provide a fresh start for financially strapped Ohio residents.

Source: Bloomberg BusinessWeek, "Home Seizures May Jump 25% This Year as U.S. Foreclosures Resume," Dan Levy, Jan. 12, 2012

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