Foreclosures were up in August as foreclosure starts ticked up and several states saw activity boom as they resolved legal issues, according to RealtyTrac data released today. However, after three consecutive months on annual increases in foreclosure starts, activity was down by 13% in August on a year-over-year basis. Bank repossessions were down 2% on a monthly basis and down 19% annually. Overall, filings were up 1% compared to June, but remained 15% lower on an annual level.

"Bucking the national trend, deferred foreclosure activity boiled over in several states in August," said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac. "In judicial states … this was a continuation of a trend we’ve been seeing for several month now. The increases in Florida and Illinois pushed foreclosure rates in those states to the two highest in the country—supplanting the non-judicial states." Before last month, non-judicial states had held the nation’s top two foreclosure spots every month since December 2010.

Most non-judicial states, however, saw foreclosure activity decline.

Overall, 20 states saw year-over-year increases in foreclosure activity. Filings in the 24 non-judicial states and the District of Columbia averaged a 31% annual decline, although 15 of those states and Washington, D.C., saw monthly activity rise.

See RealtyTrac’s full report on August’s foreclosure filings.

Claire Easley is a senior editor at Builder.