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Florida foreclosure rates still among the highest in the nation

According to Black Knight Financial Services in Jacksonville, foreclosures in the United States declined for the 26th straight month in June 2014. However, Florida still ranks in the top three nationally with 11.18 percent of mortgages classified as non-current. To be classified as non-current, the loan must either be delinquent or in foreclosure.

Although the number may seem alarming, the good news is that the percentage of non-current mortgages has actually dropped by 21.74 percentage points in the past six months. This is better than the national average, which has seen the number of non-current mortgages go up 1.55 percent since May. New Jersey and Mississippi were the two states ahead of Florida as far as having the greatest percentage of non-current mortgages while North Dakota has the fewest non-current mortgages, with 2.58 percent of loans either delinquent or in foreclosure.

Nationally, there was an 2.32 percent increase in foreclosure starts in June with some 88,000-odd loans going into the initial stages of a foreclosure. This number was down almost 19 percent from the same point in 2013. In addition, 5.7 percent of loans across the nation were 30 days or more past due, which represents a 14.59 percent decrease since May of 2013.

Mortgage-holders who have not their mortgage in 30 or more days may have their property taken back by the lender. This process is known as foreclosure, and it could represent the loss of a family home and result in an eyesore on a person's credit report. Although many lenders wait until a loan is more than 60 days past due to think about foreclosure proceedings, they do have the right to foreclose on a property as soon as the first payment is missed. Talking a real estate attorney may make it possible to dispute a foreclosure in court.

Source: Jacksonville Business Journal, "Foreclosure rate declines nationally, but Florida still in top five", Timothy Gibbons, July 24, 2014

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