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Foreclosures prove mixed bag in Magnolia State

ACROSS MISSISSIPPI — As the national home foreclosure crisis spread out of its initial hotspots, foreclosure activity fell last year in Jackson, while rising sharply in Gulfport-Biloxi, a national tracking firm said Thursday.

Irvine, Calif.-based RealtyTrac said that nationally, foreclosure filings for homeowners increased in 72 percent of the 206 metropolitan areas it surveyed. Those filings ranged from an initial default notice to outright confiscation by a lender.

RealtyTrac surveyed metro areas with at least 200,000 residents.

RealtyTrac chief executive James Saccacio said the crisis spread as high unemployment lingered and hit areas that were “relatively insulated from the initial foreclosure tsunami.”

Initially, the foreclosure problem was heavily concentrated in metro areas in such states as Nevada, Florida, California and Michigan. However, the top 10 metro areas for foreclosures saw decreases in 2010.

In Mississippi:

— Gulfport-Biloxi recorded 935 filings that hit one in every 113 housing units. That was up nearly 74 percent from 2009 and ranked the area 163rd nationally.

— Jackson recorded 1,864 filings, a drop of nearly 21 percent from 2009. Those filings hit one in every 120 housing units, ranking the area 168th nationally.

Across the United States, there were 2.87 million foreclosure filings last year, affecting one in every 45 housing units. That was up 1.67 percent from 2009 and 23 percent from 2008. Las Vegas was the metro area hit the most, with one in every 9 housing units being targeted for a foreclosure-related notice.


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