The heat map below shows change in foreclosure starts for the January to September 2008 time period compared to the same time period in 2012 by county nationwide, which can be seen by hovering over each county. This data is layered on top of data showing which presidential candidate won the county in the 2008 election, signified by the color shading of the county.
Please note that data is not available for every county. This heat map is part of RealtyTrac’s exclusive Election 2012 Local Housing Market Health Check released today. Download the full report and view other housing market heat maps from the report.
The report, which analyzed data in 919 counties nationwide, found that the number of properties starting the foreclosure process in the first nine months of 2012 was down from the number of foreclosure starts in the first nine months of 2008 in 484 of the counties analyzed (53 percent) but was up in 428 counties (47 percent).
The decrease in foreclosure starts was driven largely by counties won by President Barack Obama in the 2008 election. Among those counties, 252 (62 percent) saw foreclosure starts down from four years ago while 153 (38 percent) saw foreclosure starts increase from four years ago.
Conversely, foreclosure starts increased from four years ago in the majority of counties won by John McCain in 2008. Among those counties, 275 (54 percent) saw foreclosure starts in the first nine months of 2012 increase from the same time period in 2008, while 232 (46 percent) experienced a decrease in foreclosure starts.
Many of the nation’s most-populous counties experienced a decrease in foreclosure starts over the last four years, helping nationwide the foreclosure start total of 882,000 during the first nine months of 2012 to decrease 31 percent from the 1.3 million foreclosure starts during the first nine months of 2008.
A few exceptions to this downward trend in foreclosure starts among big counties were Cook County, Ill., (up 4 percent), Gwinnett County, Ga. (up 22 percent), Pima County, Ariz. (up 6 percent), and Philadelphia County (up 91 percent).