The Sunshine State: Foreclosures on the Rise

In the past few months, I’ve come across quite a few situations where homeowners had only recently been served with foreclosure documents even though they hadn’t paid a mortgage payment in quite some time. What is actually remarkable is that their mortgages hadn’t been paid in a very long time, and in some instances, hadn’t been paid in
years.  Foreclosures Property GuidingSince the ink dried on the $25 Billion Mortgage Fraud Settlement Fund, homeowners are now starting to feel the effects as lenders try to make up for lost time. This is particularly noticeable here in Florida. Due to the lengthy process, and because Florida is a judicial foreclosure state, it can take an average of about 2.5 years for a lender to complete a contested foreclosure in Florida. That’s second only to New York and New Jersey.

The silver lining is that on a national level, foreclosures dropped 13% this year, which is good news. However, Florida’s foreclosure rate has increased by more than that amount. Now, for the first time since 2005, Florida once again leads the nation for foreclosures according to a report by RealtyTrac.

• 1 out of every 318 homes in the Florida was in some stage of foreclosure last month, which is more than double the national average. There was 1 foreclosure filing for every 117 houses during the third quarter, which is the highest in the U.S., according to a recent report by RealtyTrac.

• Bank repossessions rose 23% this year, which is a increase for the 9th straight month.

• Foreclosure starts last month increased 24% on a yearly basis, which is the 11th consecutive month with an annual increase.

Even though the overall foreclosure rate decreased in the last two years, the other shoe is about to drop. The reduction in foreclosure filings was no oversight, as the lenders tried to clean up the mess that they had made. If you recall, the lenders errors were the root of the Mortgage Fraud Settlement to begin with. Unfortunately for homeowners, the lenders have been addressing those problems, and they are determined to clean the backlog of cases.

If you or someone you know is facing foreclosure, or are falling behind on the payments, you should contact a licensed Florida attorney to discuss your options. If you would like schedule a free consultation, or have any comments or suggestions on upcoming topics, please comment below or email

This is a generalized discussion and is not intended for any particular set of facts. Nothing in this article should be interpreted as creating an attorney-client relationship or attorney-client privilege. The law frequently changes as new cases are decided by the courts. Anything relied upon in this or any blog, is done so at the reader’s own risk.

The Guirguis Law Firm, PLLC
1423 S.E. 16th Place, STE 204
Cape Coral, Florida 33990
239.573.9939 Telephone
239.603.6965 Facsimile

Posted on October 17, 2012, in Legal and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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