NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Home foreclosures in the United States were down year-over-year for the 40th straight month in January, according to RealtyTrac, but foreclosures are peaking in states that have judicial foreclosure processes.
According to RealtyTrac's Foreclosure Report, there were a total of 124,419 foreclosure filings during January, rising 8% from December, but declining 18% from January 2013. The increase from December was typical, because of the usual holiday lull.
The year-over-year declines during January were the smallest since September 2012, since 15 states showed large year-over-year increases in foreclosure filings, because of the long delays caused by judicial foreclosure processes, including New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Maryland.
Florida had the most foreclosure filings, with 25,996 in January, which was down 13% from a year earlier. Next was California, with 14,834 filings, down 18% from January 2013. Illinois ranked third, with 8,781 foreclosure filings during January, declining 38% from January 2013.
Florida also ranked highest by foreclosure rate, with one out of every 346 housing units having a foreclosure filing. Next was Nevada, with one out of every 533 housing units having a filing, followed by Maryland, with one out of every 543 housing units being in some stage of the foreclosure process.
Maryland's "overall foreclosure activity increased on a year-over-year basis for the 19th consecutive month in January," RealtyTrac said.
For metropolitan statistical areas with populations of over 200,000, eight of the top 10 for foreclosure filing rates were in Florida, with Port St. Lucie leading, as with one out of every 211 housing units in that MSA at some stage of the foreclosure process.