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Sun Belt Cities Top List of Nation’s Metro Foreclosure Rates in First Quarter

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RISMEDIA, April 22, 2009- RealtyTrac®, one of the leading online marketplaces for foreclosure properties, released its Metropolitan Foreclosure Market Report for Q1 2009, which shows cities in California, Florida, Nevada and Arizona accounted for the 26 highest foreclosure rates in the first quarter among metro areas with a population of 200,000 or more.

Las Vegas posted the highest metro rate, with 4.48% of its housing units receiving a foreclosure filing during the quarter (one in every 22) – more than seven times the national average. Merced, Calif., documented the second highest metro foreclosure rate, with 4.21% of its housing units receiving a foreclosure filing (one in every 24), and Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Fla., recorded the third highest metro foreclosure rate, with 3.85% of its housing units receiving a foreclosure filing (one in every 26).

“The metro areas with the highest levels of foreclosure activity in the first quarter of 2009 paint a picture of concentrated problems in a relatively small number of hard hit areas,” said James J. Saccacio, chief executive officer of RealtyTrac. “Sales activity appears to be increasing in some of these markets as home prices have fallen to levels that are attractive to first-time homebuyers and investors. While we expect many of these metro areas to continue to experience high levels of foreclosure activity throughout 2009, we also expect to see other markets rise up the ranks as unemployment rates surge throughout the country.”

Other metro areas in the top 10 were the California cities of Stockton, Riverside-San Bernardino, Modesto, Bakersfield, and Vallejo-Fairfield, along with Phoenix and Port St. Lucie, Fla. Thirteen of the top 26 metro foreclosure rates were in California, nine were in Florida, and Nevada and Arizona each added two to the Top 26 list.

Report methodology
The RealtyTrac U.S. Foreclosure Market Report provides a count of the total number of properties with at least one foreclosure filing reported during the quarter. Data is also available at the individual county level and MSA level for both Q1 2009 and March 2009.

For more information, visit www.realtytrac.com.

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