Industry News

California mortgage defaults hit 10-year high

More borrowers expected to lose homes in second half of year

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Lenders sent California homeowners the highest number of mortgage default notices in more than a decade during the second quarter, the result of flat or falling prices, anemic sales and a market struggling with the excesses of the 2004-2005 home-buying frenzy, a real estate information service reported. Lenders filed 53,943 notices of default (NoDs) during the April-through-June period, up 15.4 percent from 46,760 for the previous quarter, and up 158 percent from 20,909 for second-quarter 2006, according to DataQuick Information Systems of La Jolla. Last quarter's default level was the highest since 54,045 NoDs were recorded statewide in fourth-quarter 1996, DataQuick reported. By contrast, defaults peaked in first-quarter 1996 at 61,541 and reached a low of 12,417 in third-quarter 2004. An average of 34,172 NoDs have been filed quarterly since 1992, when DataQuick's NoD statistics begin. "A lot of the loans that went bad last quarter were made at or just beyond the cycle's peak, betwe...