Homes purchased for investment purposes rose 65% in 2011 as investors looking for a place to park their cash sought out bank-owned properties, according to the latest Foreclosure News Report for RealtyTrac.

Last year, 1.2 million U.S. properties were acquired for investment purposes, up from 749,000 in 2010.

"Hundreds of thousands of these decrepit properties can't be financed because banks won't lend money to regular homebuyers (or investors) to purchase them, leaving cash investors as the only buyers," wrote Octavio Nuiry, who composed the latest Foreclosure News Report for RealtyTrac.

Nuiry cited data from the National Association of Realtors, which essentially concluded that investment homebuyers in 2011 had a median age of 50 and earned approximately $86,100.

The government-sponsored enterprises led the way this year by having the most REO sales year-to-date, RealtyTrac said. The agencies are followed by The Bank of New York Mellon (BK), Bank of America (BAC), Deutsche Bank (DB), US BankCorp. (USB), Wells Fargo (WFC), Chase (JPM), HSBC Holdings (HBC) and Citigroup (C).