Florida Foreclosures Show Increase in November

The real estate crisis of 2008 continues to drag on in Florida, where foreclosures increased in November 2011, and the state remains high on the nationwide scorecard, ranking seventh overall.

The increase may be related to lenders restarting active foreclosure proceedings, after months of lessened activity, due to the "robo-signing" issues and questions of adequate documentation from 2010.

The South Florida Business Journal reported that CoreLogic's 90-day delinquency rate for Florida was 17 percent for September 2010, but some areas fared worse. It notes Miami-Dade County's rate was 25 percent, which was three times the national average.

CoreLogic's monthly numbers indicate November's foreclosures were up seven percent to 11,000 from 2010 numbers. A company spokesman, Daren Blomquist, was quoted as saying, "the last time we saw a year-over-year increase was March 2010."

How Long Will This Last?

Corelogic also reported that real estate values declined 3.5 percent. While not the optimal situation for Florida homeowners, Florida only ranked 20 th nationwide in home value depreciation, much better than number one ranked Nevada, with 12.5 percent decline.

A report prepared by the Florida Senate's Committee on Judiciary found that a backlog of 462,000 foreclosure cases had fallen to under 261,000. This provides some perspective on the scope of the problem.

All of this distressed property continues to exert a downward pressure on home prices. For borrowers who have fallen behind on mortgage payments or who are struggling to make payments need to consider if remaining in their home is viable.

Underwater?

The situation is worse if you are underwater with your mortgage. Because of the large numbers of delinquent and foreclosed property, it may take decades for some properties to recover their pre-crisis valuation. Some Florida real estate has fallen 75 percent in value, and may never recover to the loan amount.

If a borrower whose house is underwater is also struggling to make ends meet or is also having difficulty making credit card or other payments, filing for bankruptcy may be the best option. A bankruptcy attorney can review your finances, the mortgage obligation and the current value of the property and help you decide the most economically sensible course of action to follow. A bankruptcy solution may involve either filing Chapter 13 reorganization in an attempt to catch up or modify the mortgage loan or Chapter 7 to discharge all the debts and surrender the home.