While Las Vegas boasts the worst foreclosure rate in the country, several other cities are creeping up with the fastest growing rates of foreclosures — and they’re in some unexpected places.
These cities mostly have one thing in common: They’re all battling a growing number of job losses among their residents that are leading more home owners to default on their mortgages.
Here are five cities with some of the fastest-growing foreclosure rates in the country:
1. Spartanburg, S.C.
Foreclosure rate: 1 in 60 homes
This city in upstate South Carolina faced a 228 percent increase in foreclosure filings in 2010 — making it the nation's fastest-growing foreclosure rate. In 2009, the city’s unemployment rate hit 12.7 percent in 2009, dropping to 10.9 percent in 2010, yet still well above the national average.
2. Albuquerque, N.M.
Foreclosure rate: 1 in 46 homes
Albuquerque had a 60 percent increase in foreclosures in 2010. This city has had one of the fastest-growing metro areas over the past decade, attracting young professionals and retirees, but its economy was hard hit by the recession.
3. Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Foreclosure rate: 2.25 percent
Myrtle Beach had a 44 percent increase in foreclosures in 2010. Once a big draw for vacation-home buyers, the city’s second-home market was crushed by the recession when tourism dropped and unemployment increased.
4. Savannah, Ga.
Foreclosure rate: 1 in 40 homes
Savannah had a 37 percent increase in foreclosure filings in 2010. Its unemployment rate is still on the rise; in November it rose to 8.9 percent. Many of the foreclosures in the city are in its Historic District or The Landings, popular areas where home prices rose quickly during the housing boom days.
5. Charlotte, N.C.
Foreclosure rate: 1 in 50 homes
Charlotte also had a 37 percent increase in foreclosure filings in 2010. Its unemployment rate is dropping; it was 10 percent in November. Charlotte has become the 33rd largest metro area in the country, growing by more than 30 percent in the past 10 years.
Source: “10 Surprise Foreclosure Hotspots,” CNN Money (Feb. 1, 2011)