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Miami metro foreclosures rise 24 percent in first half of 2012: report

Prices of foreclosed homes are up, which may provide market buffer
By Alexander Britell | July 26, 2012 05:30PM

There were a total of 46,559 properties with foreclosure filings in the tri-county area in the first half of 2012, a new report from RealtyTrac shows. That represents a 23.7 percent increase over the first six months of 2011 and signals that South Florida’s increase in foreclosure processing is continuing.

It also marked a 24 percent increase from the second half of 2011.

“This is a reflection that it’s not just a one or two month anomaly [of increases],” RealtyTrac spokesperson Daren Blomquist told The Real Deal. “For the last six months, we’ve seen this consistent upward trend in foreclosure activity.”

Despite the renewed processing by banks, there was a silver lining in the data, Blomquist said: prices of foreclosed properties are on the rise. The tri-county area saw a 5 percent year-over-year increase in average foreclosure prices — potentially providing a buffer as more foreclosures are processed.

“What that’s done is make the Miami market very much ready to absorb these additional foreclosures that are coming on line,” he said. “There are a lot of buyers who are interested in getting them. And so for the most part, these properties will be able to sell very quickly.”

Nationally, foreclosure activity increased year-over-year in the first half of 2012, although 129 metro areas posted decreases in activity.

“Increasing foreclosure starts in many local markets helped push total foreclosure activity higher in the first half of the year compared to the second half of 2011,” RealtyTrac CEO Brandon Moore said in a statement.

Florida accounted for seven of the 10 highest foreclosure rates in America; Miami’s metro area had the 13th highest foreclosure rate in the country.