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U.S. foreclosure filings in January 2020 increased 13 percent from December 2019 to 60,085 total filings, according to a report by Attom Data Solutions. The increase also brings foreclosure filings up 7 percent from a year ago in January 2019.

New Jersey, Delaware and Illinois reported the worst foreclosure rates in January 2020. New Jersey posted one foreclosure for every 1,046 housing units, Delaware one in every 1,098 housing units and Illinois one in every 1,139 housing units.

Out of the 220 metro areas with at least 200,000 people, the following posted the worst foreclosure rates: Atlantic City, New Jersey (one foreclosure in every 703 housing units); Rockford, Illinois (one in every 726 housing units); Peoria, Illinois (one in every 952 housing units); Fayetteville, North Carolina (one in every 957 housing units); and Trenton, New Jersey (one in every 984 housing units).

Among 53 metro areas containing at least 1 million people, areas that reported the greatest foreclosure rates included Chicago, Illinois (one in every 1,027 housing units); Cleveland, Ohio (one in every 1,029 housing units); Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (one in every 1,072 housing units); Jacksonville, Florida (one in every 1,144 housing units); and Riverside, California (one in every 1,189 housing units).

However, not all states saw rising foreclosures in the new year.

“Counter to the national trend, 16 states posted month-over-month decreases in foreclosure activity in January 2020,” Attom’s report said.

“Including Iowa (down 44 percent); Oregon (down 28 percent); Nevada (down 28 percent); Louisiana (down 24 percent); and Washington (down 20 percent).”

Nationally, foreclosure starts decreased in January 2020 from December 2019, though only by less than 1 percent. However, foreclosure starts during this month were down by 9 percent year-over-year from January 2019.

Nonetheless, 19 states reported year-over-year increases in foreclosure starts, including California (increased 27 percent); Tennessee (increased 21 percent); Georgia (increased 14 percent); Illinois (increased 9 percent); and Ohio (increased 3 percent).

Likewise, 75 of 220 metro areas analyzed reported year-over-year increases in foreclosure starts, like San Antonio, Texas (increased 66 percent); Los Angeles, California (increased 63 percent); Riverside, California (increased 22 percent); Nashville, Tennessee (increased 19 percent) and Chicago, Illinois (increased 14 percent).

National bank repossession rates also rose after the holidays, increasing month-over-month by 49 percent and year-over-year by 70 percent.

Email Lillian Dickerson

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