Number of U.S. homes in foreclosure soared 79 percent in 2007

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The number of U.S. homes in some stage of foreclosure last year jumped 79 percent from 2006 and the number of homeowners falling behind on mortgage payments suggests more of the same this year.

The real estate tracking company RealtyTrac says about 1.3 million homes received foreclosure-related warnings last year, up from 717,522 in 2006. More than one percent of all U.S. households were in some phase of the foreclosure process last year, up from about half a percent in 2006.

Nevada, Florida, Michigan and California posted the highest foreclosure rates.

A late-year surge in the number of properties reporting foreclosure filings suggests that many are in the initial stages of the process and could end up lost to foreclosure this year unless lenders or the government steps in.

Nearly two million subprime mortgages are scheduled to reset to higher interest rates this year and next.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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