Phoenix flippers have been looking at Mesa foreclosure listings to find lower-priced properties that they could flip profitably. The city of Mesa, a suburb of Phoenix in the east, is part of the Phoenix metro area that also includes Scottsdale.

In February, foreclosures still accounted for 41 percent of all homes sold in Mesa. Despite posting a smaller foreclosure percentage than Phoenix and Chandler, Mesa has a significant number of residential properties in foreclosed lists.

Foreclosures in Mesa have contributed to the staggering 133,809 foreclosures posted in the Phoenix-Mesa metro area in 2009, equivalent to 8.03 percent of all households in the area. The number also marked an almost 37 percent increase in foreclosure activity compared to 2008.

Flippers have been targeting foreclosure properties in Mesa because of the proximity of the city to Phoenix. Mesa has long been a bedroom community in relation to Phoenix because of the large percentage of Mesa residents doing their business in Phoenix or working in enterprises in Phoenix. Despite Mesa having a population higher than other popular cities, many Mesa residents still depend on Phoenix for their jobs and business operations.

It is this relation of Mesa to Phoenix that spur flippers to target Mesa foreclosure listings. If they cannot find the kinds of bargains they are looking for in Phoenix, they could look at properties in Mesa.

The pace of entry of distressed properties into foreclosure listings in Arizona slowed month-over-month in February after surging in January by more than 4 percent. But total foreclosure filings in February was still relatively high at 16,718. Despite the drop from 21,048 filings in January, the state of Arizona was still second among all 50 states in foreclosure rate.

The number of properties that entered the real estate owned listings of banks also dropped, although the number was still relatively high. Of the almost 17,000 filings in February, a total of 6,053 homes were taken back by lenders, equivalent to 36.21 percent of total filings.

In January, of the more than 21,000 foreclosures filed, a total of 8,637 homes were repossessed by banks, equivalent to 41.04 percent of total filings.

According to Phoenix investors, the number of experienced flippers has risen sharply. They have also developed techniques of blocking other flippers from bidding on the properties they want. Some flippers spread wrong information about certain properties in Mesa foreclosure listings so other bidders would lose interest in these properties, leaving them free for bidding by the shrewd flippers.

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