California Foreclosure Starts Up 73% Since January

California Foreclosure Starts Up 73% Since January

04/12/2013 BY: ESTHER CHO

Foreclosure starts in California showed a huge increase since the beginning of this year, but the long-term trend still points to an overall decrease, ForeclosureRadar reported.

In the Golden State, Notices of Default (NOD), or the first stage of the foreclosure process, increased 14.2 percent month-over-month in March. Since January, NODs have surged 72.5 percent. ForeclosureRadar said this suggests “some of the regulation-driven decline in foreclosures toward the end of last year reversed course.”

Despite the significant year-to-date increase, ForeclosureRadar reported foreclosure starts were still down 63.8 percent from a year ago, and NODs last month were at their third lowest level since data tracking began in September 2006.

The analytics firm also reported Notices of Trustee Sale, which serve as the final notice before a sale, were down monthly and yearly in March by 4 percent and 54.1 percent, respectively.

Overall, California foreclosure filings—NODs and Notices of Trustee Sale-showed a 4.0 percent in March. However, filings were down still down 59.3 percent from a year ago.

According to the firm, foreclosure filings have been trending downward since March 2009 as government agencies introduce more programs that result in a longer foreclosure process or alternatives to foreclosure such as short sales.

Foreclosure sales in California stood at 4,167 last month, representing a 0.9 percent decrease from February and a 50.7 percent decline from a year ago.

The report also included data for four other Western states: Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington.

Nevada and Oregon also saw monthly increases in foreclosure starts. Foreclosure starts were up 5.1 percent in the Silver State, and also up 61.3 percent year-over-year. In Oregon, foreclosure starts were up 9.1 percent from February, but down by 94.6 percent from March 2012.

In Arizona, foreclosure starts were fell 12.8 percent from February and were down 60.9 percent from last year. Washington also saw a slight 2.8 percent decrease in starts.

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