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Business Observer Monday, Jan. 30, 2012 7 years ago

Foreclosures improve southward

Fort Myers is healthier; Sarasota is stagnant; and Tampa has worsened.

SARASOTA -- The three major Gulf Coast metros are divergent in terms of their ability to deal with foreclosure problems. The Fort Myers market is improving; Sarasota is stagnant; and Tampa Bay is getting worse.

The foreclosure rate for November in the Fort Myers-Cape Coral area is down nearly two percentage points from the same time a year ago, to a rate of 10.06%. Fewer borrowers are late on payments, as well; the delinquency rate fell from 19.32% in November to 2010 to 16.03% at the end of 2011.

In Sarasota, foreclosure and delinquencies have stagnated. The November foreclosure rate for the North Port-Bradenton-Sarasota area is 11.5%, within 0.2 percentage points of the rate from a year prior. The percentage of borrowers late on payments is basically unchanged as well, at 16.26%.

In Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, roughly the same ratio of borrowers -- nearly 17% -- are late on payments. But a larger portion of borrowers have entered the foreclosure process over the past year, up from 10.93% to 12.07%.

The statewide foreclosure rate for November was 11.93%, down slightly from a year ago. The nationwide rate is at 3.41%.

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