In another sign foreclosure activity is ramping up, foreclosure filings rose nationwide in October compared to the month before, according to the latest report from foreclosure data site RealtyTrac.

One in every 563 housing units, or 230,678 properties, received a filing — a default notice, scheduled auction, or bank repossession — in October. While that’s a 7 percent jump from September, filings were still down nearly 31 percent from October 2010.

"The October foreclosure numbers continue to show strong signs that foreclosure activity is coming out of the rain delay we’ve been in for the past year as lenders corrected foreclosure paperwork and processing problems," said James Saccacio, RealtyTrac’s CEO, in statement.

The number of homes receiving default notices increased 10 percent month to month in October, to 77,733 properties, though that’s still down 23 percent from October 2010. In states that follow a judicial foreclosure process, default notices reached an 11-month high of 39,282, accounting for about half of all default notice filings. Three states saw particularly significant month-to-month increases in default notices: Florida (28 percent), Pennsylvania (50 percent) and Indiana (61 percent).

Scheduled auctions rose 8 percent month to month but fell 38 percent year over year in October to 85,321. Auctions in judicial foreclosure states also reached an 11-month high last month, to 25,941. On a monthly basis, auctions increased significantly in three states: Florida (57 percent), Minnesota (43 percent) and Illinois (38 percent).

Banks repossessed 67,624 properties in October, up 4 percent from September, but down 27 percent from October 2010. Four states saw especially large month-to-month increases in REO (bank-owned home) activity: Michigan (40 percent), Oregon (45 percent), New Jersey (48 percent) and Indiana (73 percent).

Five states accounted for 53 percent of nationwide foreclosure activity in October: Nevada, California, Arizona, Florida and Michigan.

A new Nevada state law designed to crack down on documentation irregularities by foreclosing lenders took effect in October, likely leading to the 75 percent monthly decrease in default notices in the state, RealtyTrac said. Nevertheless, Nevada had the highest foreclosure rate in the nation for the 58th straight month in October.

10 states with the highest foreclosure activity rates in October:

Area Foreclosure rate (October 2011)
U.S. 1 in 563 housing units
Nevada  1 in 180
California 1 in 243
Arizona 1 in 259
Florida 1 in 268
Michigan 1 in 282
Georgia 1 in 406
Illinois 1 in 423
Idaho 1 in 432
Oregon 1 in 455
Colorado 1 in 458

Source: RealtyTrac

Among metropolitan areas with a population of 200,000 or more, Stockton, Calif., had the highest foreclosure rate in October with 1 in 143 units receiving a foreclosure filing. Las Vegas had previously held the top spot for 22 straight months, but dropped down to No. 5 due to an 80 percent monthly drop in new default notices, RealtyTrac said.

Metro area Foreclosure rate (October 2011)
Stockton, Calif. 1 in 143 housing units
Modesto, Calif. 1 in 148
Vallejo-Fairfield, Calif. 1 in 150
Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif. 1 in 155
Las Vegas 1 in 162
Saginaw, Mich. 1 in 174
Sacramento, Calif. 1 in 176
Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Fla. 1 in 190
Merced, Calif. 1 in 200
Orlando, Fla. 1 in 208

Source: RealtyTrac

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