Or maybe just skip a beat. RealtyTrac, our #1 ranked foreclosure listings service, released its foreclosure report for first quarter 2009. The bad news: 800,000 properties received foreclosure filings, 12% higher than the next highest month on record. But if you have managed to stay afloat, this may be good news for you. If you re in the market for a dream house and have the cash, here is a listing of the Top 10 Foreclosure Cities based on inventory.

Just for fun we also show the priciest property listing for each top foreclosure city. That 1400 sq. ft. condo for $10 million must come with a lifetime staff and an art collection, or I m not seeing the value there. Still, foreclosure listings may be an opportunity to trade up without the risk of ending upside down on your mortgage.

By Inventory:*

  1. Las Vegas, NV $9,000,000 (4/4) 3120 sq. ft.
  2. Miami, FL $4,000,000 (3/2) 2,264 sq. ft.
  3. Chicago, IL $1,200,000 (condo)
  4. Phoenix, AZ $3,800,000 (3 baths) 1,394 sq. ft.
  5. Los Angeles, CA $13,524,000 (4/4) 3,276 sq. ft.
  6. Sacramento, CA $4,000,001 (single family home)
  7. Cape Coral, FL $1,155,000 (3/2) 2,974 sq. ft.
  8. Orlando, FL $999,999 (single family home)
  9. Tampa, FL $1,567,900 (7/7) 6,257 sq. ft.
  10. San Diego, CA $10,250,000 (2/2) 1,420 sq. ft. (condo)

If you re in the market for a foreclosure property, Joe Henry of Keller Williams in Northern Virginia says,  Cash offers within 50% of Fair Market Value provide the most traction and banks are efficiently clearing title issues to expedite ratification and closing schedules.  He advises his clients to work with their broker to write a defendable offer with room to counter, a 30 day close, and to buy  as is.  How to find the best deal? Joe says,  The home needs to make your heart beat faster at a compelling value. 

As with any home purchase, do your research. Start with our review of the best foreclosure listing services.

*Source: RealtyTrac, 4/09

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