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Foreclosures still a problem in some areas

Texas residents may have noticed that there are not as many foreclosures on the housing market as there were during the recession. However, a significant percentage of real estate sales still involve foreclosures across the U.S.

In July, foreclosed properties accounted for 6.4 percent of all single family home and condo sales, according to RealtyTrac. This is down from 6.6 percent of all sales in June and a major drop from 8 percent of sales in July 2014. At the same time, the National Association of Realtors reports that distressed properties, which include both foreclosures and short sales, fell from 8 percent in June to 7 percent in July. Distressed properties accounted for 9 percent of all homes during the same period last year. Five years ago, distressed properties made up 33 percent of the market.

Overall, the real estate market is improving nationwide. However, there are still some pockets where foreclosures are a problem. According to RealtyTrac, the cities still experiencing real estate hardship are Virginia Beach, Virginia; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Las Vegas, Nevada; Tampa, Florida; Chicago, Illinois; Toledo, Ohio; Baltimore, Maryland; Morehead City, North Carolina; Rockford, Illinois; and Salisbury, North Carolina. Meanwhile, there are some concerns about the lack of housing affordability and the over-dependence on fickle cash buyers in some markets. Underwater homeowners also continue to pose a heightened risk of default should the economy falter.

Texas homeowners who are facing a mortgage foreclosure may benefit by consulting with an attorney. Legal counsel may be able to stop the foreclosure process and arrange a payment schedule that makes it possible for a client to save their home.

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