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Rockford, Chicago area have some of the highest foreclosure rates in U.S.

Rockford, Ill. and the Chicago area are experiencing some of the highest metropolitan foreclosure rates in the country. According to new data from RealtyTrac, the foreclosure filings in those areas are up both from last quarter and last year.

When Ed Jacob, head of the Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago, found the foreclosure data online, he said the news was discouraging for a few reasons.

"When I found this article online - is this like a sign of something - the pop up ad was scary signs of depression and then it had a question mark. Does that mean anything?" Jacob said.

In the Chicago, Joliet and Naperville area, foreclosures in quarter one are up almost 18 percent from last year. The jump is even larger in Rockford, where filings are up by almost 51 percent from last year.

Jacob said the numbers are going to remain stubbornly high until the area sees more job growth. Foreclosures, he said, aren't just a problem in low-income neighborhoods anymore, it's a state-wide issue.

"A lot of the homeowners who are coming to NHS for assistance right now are actually from the suburban ring or those areas or neighborhoods that we felt were stronger neighborhoods but they've had loss in income," he said.

Jacob said the increase could also be from a $25 billion dollar multi-state settlement reached with the nation's largest banks over robo-signing, which improperly approved foreclosures.

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