Foreclosure data tracker RealtyTrac released its final 2009 foreclosure statistics today. The results, as you can probably imagine, are ugly. The U.S. had 2,824,674 foreclosed properties. That's a 21% increase from 2008 and a 120% increase from 2007. Yet, the results vary widely on a state-by-state basis. You may be able to guess a few of the worst-hit states, but the depth of their pain is rather astonishing.There are a few different ways you could try to determine which states were the worst -- depending on what measure you use. If you want to compare total foreclosures, then California ranked #1, with 632,573 foreclosed properties. Florida followed with 516,711. Arizona was a distant third with 163,210 foreclosures.
But since California and Florida are pretty highly-populated states, it isn't necessarily fair to call them the worst, in my opinion. I'm more interested in how many foreclosures each state had per housing unit. That levels the playing field. Luckily, RealtyTrac provides that data as well. Now the worst state is Nevada, with a whopping one foreclosure for every 10 properties. Arizona follows with one foreclosure for every 16 properties. Florida is right on its heels with one foreclosure for every 17 properties.