Minnesota Braces for Second Foreclosure Storm

Homeowners in the Twin Cities have been encouraged by signs of economic improvement in the past few months. Home prices began to rise again after a two year slump. Behind that sunny forecast however, there are signs of another tempest brewing.

The rise was due in large part to the drop in the number of foreclosure sales in the first quarter of the year. But the lull in foreclosures isn't likely to last. According to market analyst, RealtyTrac, Minnesotans may soon be facing another downpour of home foreclosures.

The forecast is based on statistics showing an 11 percent increase in the number of people who are headed for foreclosure. RealtyTrac reported that currently one in every 312 homeowners in the state has either received notice of a sheriff's sale or a warning indicating a sale is coming.

Experts believe the rise in foreclosures is left over in large part from the robo-signing scandal, which caused most banks to suspend foreclosure processes last year while they regrouped. There is no indication of how this latest swell of foreclosures will affect the local economy as a whole

For individuals looking to save their homes, there may still be hope. Now, the timing may be right to investigate bankruptcy solutions. Changes in bankruptcy law in Minnesota have created opportunities for homeowners that previously did not exist. People now have the option of stripping off their second mortgages using Chapter 13 bankruptcy in addition to catching up on arrears. They key, however is to get legal help as soon as possible.

Source: www.startribune.com, "More Home Foreclosures on Horizon in Minnesota," Jim Buchta, 12 April 2012

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