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Foreclosure crisis deepens, despite earlier optimism

Published: Sat, February 27, 2010 @ 8:09 p.m.

Local, state and national foreclosure statistics back up what many of us could sense about the number of homes falling to foreclosure last year: The problem got worse.

2006 was the worst year the Mahoning Valley has had for foreclosures, with the rate rising more than 30 percent in Mahoning and Trumbull counties.

There were hopeful signs in 2007 and 2008, as the foreclosure numbers eased.

All that changed, however, when the national economy soured part way through 2008, setting up a 2009 that forced foreclosure rates to rise 4 percent in Ohio, 9 percent in Trumbull County, 10 percent in Columbiana County and 21 percent across the nation.

Mahoning County’s foreclosure rate was the exception, dropping 5 percent.

Richard Cordray, Ohio attorney general, came to the Mahoning Valley in late 2007 when he was Ohio treasurer and the foreclosure rate was on its way down.

He even predicted that the foreclosure crisis would abate by 2009 or 2010.

“Without the recession, we would have seen it decline,” he said in a recent interview.

Cordray now says Ohio’s foreclosure problems are likely to continue, with Ohio’s record number of foreclosures in 2009 — 3.8 percent higher than in 2008 — likely to grow even more in 2010.

Read more in Sunday’s Vindicator and Vindy.com

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