Although it never shared the notoriety of Miami, Los Angeles and Phoenix during America's foreclosure crisis, the Chicago area now has the nation's largest inventory of foreclosed homes because it is harder to unload troubled properties here than in most other metropolitan areas.
The inventory data compiled by RealtyTrac, a California company that tracks housing sales, place Chicago first among the country's 20 largest metropolitan areas. Real estate experts attribute the high concentration of foreclosures to numerous factors including the strong protections built into Illinois law to protect borrowers, the impact of the "robo-signing" investigation by the Illinois Attorney General, and the reluctance of banks to dump properties at prices far below the value of mortgage loans on their books.
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