Nationwide foreclosure activity has remained unsteady. While foreclosure activity dipped by 10 percent in January 2009, it increased by six percent in February - an increase of approximately 30 percent from February 2008.

In mid-March, the top ten states with the highest foreclosure rates (based on foreclosure filings in February 2009) were: please click here to view.

Ohio, which was ranked with the highest amount of foreclosures in recent years, dropped to number 10 in the third quarter of 2008 and held steady at number 10 during the first quarter of 2009. However, the ratio of foreclosure filings in Ohio has dropped from 1 in every 417 housing units in the third quarter of 2008 to 1 in every 451 housing units currently.

Since our first report on nationwide foreclosures, Colorado and New Jersey have fallen out of the top ten and are now ranked number 11 and number 29, respectively.

States with the lowest foreclosure rates in the first quarter of this year include Nebraska at number 50, Vermont at number 49 and South Dakota at number 48.

Although legislation regarding the foreclosure crisis is still pending and has primarily focused on homeowners, RealtyTrac has implemented a tool for renters. On April 1, 2009, RealtyTrac announced a new service called RealtyTrac Renter Alerts that gives tenants advanced notice when the property they are renting enters into default or is about to be foreclosed by a lender. The new foreclosure monitoring service sends e-mail alerts to subscribers warning them immediately of any foreclosure activity on a specific property. RealtyTrac U.S. Foreclosure Market Report provides a count of the total number of properties with at least one foreclosure filing reported during the month or quarter – broken out by type of filing at the national, state and county levels.