Industry NewsMortgage

California mortgage defaults up 125%

DataQuick: Activity may be 'nearing a plateau'

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Lenders started foreclosure proceedings on a record number of California homeowners in the second quarter, the result of declining home values and the rampant spoilage of a batch of especially risky home loans made in late 2005 and 2006, a real estate information service reported. Mortgage servicers recorded 121,341 "notices of default" during the April-through-June period. That was up 6.6 percent from a revised 113,809 for this year's first quarter, and up 124.9 percent from 53,943 in second-quarter 2007, according to DataQuick Information Systems. Last quarter's number of defaults was the highest in DataQuick's statistics, which go back to 1992. Notices of Default are recorded at county recorders offices and mark the first step of the formal foreclosure process. "It's still very clear that most of the problems are in certain areas and in certain categories. Basically, areas that absorbed spillover activity during the end of the boom cycle in 2006 seem to be...