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Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Foreclosures rising in Akron's suburbs

Analysis of Summit County sheriff's sales confirms higher rate of homeowners unable to pay mortgages

By Rick Armon Beacon Journal staff writer

Published on Wednesday, Jul 09, 2008

While Akron remains the epicenter for Summit County's ongoing foreclosure crisis, people are losing their homes at a faster rate in many suburbs, according to a new Beacon Journal analysis.
Foreclosures jumped significantly — in some cases doubled — over the last three years in communities such as Bath Township, Copley Township, Coventry Township, Hudson, New Franklin and Twinsburg.

The fact that the foreclosure crisis has spread beyond Akron into the suburbs isn't news. But the analysis confirms what everyone has concluded is common knowledge — suburban homeowners also are having problems paying their mortgages.

''That wasn't too surprising to us,'' said Cynthia Sich, director of the Summit County Office of Consumer Affairs. ''It was just a matter of time.''

The newspaper examined sheriff's foreclosure sales — which include homes and commercial properties — for 2005, 2006 and 2007.

Overall, 6,123 properties were sold. More than 120 of those were sold more than once in the three-year period.

The worst year was 2006, when 2,243 properties were bought at auction.
(Through June, 1,352 had been sold this year.)

Community numbers
In Bath, the number of foreclosures rose from seven in 2005 to 20 in 2007 — a 185.7 percent increase. In Hudson, they jumped from 10 to 21, or 110 percent. In Copley, they increased from 15 to 28, or 86.7 percent.

New Franklin saw its foreclosures rise from 19 to 36, or 89.5 percent. In Coventry, they rose from 30 to 50, or 66.7 percent. And in Twinsburg, the number increased from 19 to 30, or 57.9 percent.

Akron led the county with a total of 4,205 over the three-year period. The number rose from 1,220 to 1,476 — a 21 percent increase.

The sales in Akron peaked at 1,509 in 2006.

Several communities experienced a decline in foreclosures. They fell from 41 to 29 in Green, and 94 to 89 in Cuyahoga Falls. They also dipped from 13 to nine in Munroe Falls, and 14 to 11 in Sagamore Hills Township.

Officials couldn't explain the significant drop in Green and Cuyahoga Falls — although both had many more foreclosures in 2006 than last year.