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Floridians still dealing with a high rate of foreclosures

Although residents of South Florida are probably getting used to seeing mostly positive headlines when it comes to the real estate market, it can be easy to forget that Florida residents statewide are still having a lot of problems with banks and lenders. With year after year of signs of only a tepid economic recovery, making the mortgage payment is still the hardest part of daily life for millions of Americans, including many in Florida. And, according to a recent report, January of 2013 marked the fifth month in a row in which Florida led the nation in the foreclosure rate.

According to the report, almost 30,000 properties were in some stage of the foreclosure process in Florida in January. Many more borrowers are dealing with delinquent payments, which can easily lead to a foreclosure.

However, even as individual homeowners and property owners are still facing tough times, investors appear to reaping the benefits. Some investors have begun to scoop up foreclosed properties, sometimes in bulk, with the intent to turn them into profit-churning rental properties. Some of these investment groups can be quite large. For instance, one company starting to take an interest in Florida has bought over 3,500 homes throughout the country since 2008. These properties were then renovated.

Even though some of these investment purchases may ultimately help the recovery of the housing market, the point cannot be overlooked that some homeowner had to go through a painful foreclosure process to put those properties on the market. For anyone having trouble holding true to their mortgage, there are options. One of which is a mortgage loan modification, but there are others. Getting the right information about all of the options to help avoid foreclosure can be the best first step toward staying in your home.

Source: SunSentinel.com, "Florida foreclosures big business for investment firms," Paul Owers, Feb. 18, 2013

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