Foreclosures Surge, Biggest Jump in 5 Years

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Home foreclosure rates hit record highs in the first three months of 2010, according to a new report.

RealtyTrac Inc. says there's been a 35 percent increase in foreclosures since the first quarter of 2009. Households in danger of foreclosure have increased by 16 percent since that time.

According to the firm, more homes were repossessed and scheduled for a foreclosure sale than in any quarter since at least January 2005.

"We're right now on pace to see more than 1 million bank repossessions this year," said Rick Sharga, a RealtyTrac senior vice president.

Federal and state programs helped slow foreclosures last year when President Obama leaned on banks to adjust home loans for troubled homeowners. However, the trend is now on the rise again.

"We're finally seeing the banks start to process the inventory that has been in foreclosure, but delayed in processing," Sharga said. "We expect the pace to accelerate as the year goes on."

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