ST. PAUL  (AP) - Home foreclosures have dropped 15 percent during the first half of the year in Minnesota.

But, the Minnesota Homeownership Center is quick to point out that the number of foreclosed homes is still at a record high as people struggle to find work.

Center director Julie Gugin says the number one reason people come to the nonprofit organization for help say the loss of income, or employment, is the reason they're having trouble paying their mortgage.

Foreclosures statewide dropped to 9,565 for the first six months of the year. The St. Paul Pioneer Press ( ) reports that in the seven-county metro area, foreclosures are declining at a faster rate than in rural areas.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved)