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Foreclosure sales rate skyrockets out west

Foreclosed homes are being bought back by banks at a high rate out west.

Foreclosed homes are being bought back by banks at a high rate out west.

Foreclosed homes are still in the news these days, particularly out west, where sales have been skyrocketing.

According to ForeclosureRadar, an organization that supplies Realtors and other professionals with the latest information on foreclosures in five western states, the rate of sales among foreclosed homes in January was the largest seen since last fall.

"We have not seen this level of activity on the courthouse steps for months," says Sean O'Toole, CEO and founder of ForeclosureRadar.com. "The increase in foreclosures is just in time to provide a fresh supply of entry-level homes for the spring home buying season."

Not surprisingly, Nevada, which has been hit hard by foreclosures in recent years, saw a 36.8 percent increase. In California, which has had a mixture of good and bad real estate developments recently, foreclosure sales increased over 50 percent compared to December.

The study considered "foreclosure sales" as those where banks buy them back or investors buy them, not people people planning on moving into one after buying.

This news likely won't be welcomed by homebuilders, many of whom are skeptical about their prospects for building this year, as it leaves the market flooded with inventory.