Foreclosure filings increased 30 percent in February, as compared with February 2008, according to RealtyTrac.

The increase of foreclosure filings, which includes default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions, occurred despite bans on foreclosures throughout various parts of the country.

“The increase in foreclosure activity from January to February is somewhat surprising, given that many of the foreclosure prevention efforts and moratoria in place in January were extended through most of February as well,” said James J. Saccacio, chief executive officer of RealtyTrac. “There were some notable exceptions to this: a 45-day voluntary moratorium in Florida expired at the end of January, and foreclosure activity there was up 14 percent from the previous month; and many New York foreclosure proceedings delayed by a new law for an extra 90 days appear to have hit the system in February, when the state’s foreclosure activity increased 23 percent from the previous month.”

Nevada had the highest foreclosure rate with one in every 70 properties receiving a foreclosure notice. It was a 9 percent increase from January 2009 and a 156 percent increase over February 2008.

Arizona (1 in 147) and California (1 in 165) had the next highest foreclosure rates during the month.

March 16, 2009.