Tampa Bay Foreclosure Rates High, But Dropping

Depending on what side of the table you’re on, the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater market ranked second among Top 20 metropoltan cities in foreclosures during the first quarter of 2014.

1 in 122 houses filed for foreclosure, according to a report issued by RealtyTrac. The official total of foreclosure filings was 11,092. However, the foreclosure rate is down 17.78 percent from first quarter 2013, nearly 4 percent from last quarter.

“I think Florida, and Tampa Bay, have turned the corner in terms of foreclosure activity,” said Daren Blomquist, RealtyTrac vice president. “It’s headed in the right direction, but it’s coming off a very elevated level.”

Florida still leads the nation in foreclosure filings, though. In metropolitan areas with a population of 200,000 or more, the top eight foreclosure cities in Florida are: No. 1, Port St. Lucie (one unit in every 99); No. 2, Miami (106); No. 3, Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville (112); No. 4, Orlando (120); No. 5, Tampa Bay (122); No. 6, Lakeland (127); No. 7, Ocala (130); No. 8, Jacksonville (134). They were followed by Rockford, Ill. and Atlantic City, N.J.

Florida foreclosure activity has decreased annually for the past three consecutive quarters, as the market recovers

Blomquist also thinks that the banks and courts in Florida have “caught up” with shadow inventory — distressed properties that are not yet listed — but added a cautionary caveat:

“Foreclosure is the first stop in disposing of shadow inventory. The second is to see the properties listed on the market.”

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