By Michael B. Sauter
According to data released last week, the worst effects of the housing crisis are beginning to wind down. RealtyTrac's latest report shows the number of foreclosures in the U.S. in April is down 13 percent, to 188,780 from 219,258 a year ago. However, some of the largest cities in the U.S. continue to lag behind the rest of the country and still have long way to go before the housing crash has fully run its course.
RealtyTrac published the number of new home foreclosures in April in the 50 largest metropolitan statistical areas in the U.S. Of those 50 areas, 10 had more than double the national foreclosure rate --one out of every 698 new homes. In California's Inland Empire metro area, the rate was more than triple that.
Using RealtyTrac's foreclosure rates and and home price data from Fiserv Case-Shiller, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the 10 metropolitan areas with the highest foreclosure rates.
According to Trulia's chief economist, Jed Kolko, while the overall decline in home prices is the major underlying force behind these areas' high foreclosure rates, whether foreclosures are increasing or decreasing is also a function of the state's legal system. Florida, for example, has a lengthy foreclosure process that involves the courts, while Nevada's process is much shorter and non-judicial. As a result, Florida is much farther behind in liquidating its foreclosure inventory.
These are the 10 U.S. cities with the most homes in foreclosure.