California Foreclosure Declines a Welcome Break Foreclosures Drop in February


Discovery Bay, California (EastBayDaily) — ForeclosureRadar (, the only website that tracks every California foreclosure with daily auction updates, today issued its monthly California Foreclosure Report. Statewide foreclosure rates declined in February, even on a daily average basis. Foreclosure sales at auction declined 15 percent to 16,931 sales with a combined loan value of $6.85 Billion. Notices of Defaults, the first step in the foreclosure process, were down 7.6 percent to 37,362. There were 18,636 Notices of Trustee Sale, which set the auction date and time, down 20 percent from January. Despite the declines the numbers are significantly higher than Q4’07 averages, – defaults higher by 26 percent, and foreclosure sales higher by 36 percent.

“February declines are a welcome break from the astonishing increases in December, 2007 and January, 2008,” said Sean O’Toole, founder of ForeclosureRadar. “Unfortunately, those increases and the continued withdrawal of lending options point to more trouble ahead. Based on current activity levels, we still do not expect foreclosures to peak earlier than the third or fourth quarter of 2008.”

Lenders continue to take back 98 percent of foreclosures at auction, despite offering substantial discounts. A year ago opening bids were discounted 30 percent or more on just 3 percent of sales. Today, 77 percent of sales are discounted an average of 19 percent and 31 percent are discounted 30 percent or more.

Of the foreclosed loans for which ForeclosureRadar has determined loan position, 98 percent were first mortgages with the majority of those properties having their second mortgage wiped out at sale. The majority of foreclosed loans were originated in 2006 (46 percent), followed closely by 2005 (36 percent), and for the first time 2007 (10 percent) which overtook 2004 (5 percent).

At the county level, the majority of large counties saw overall foreclosure declines, while a number of smaller inland counties saw continued increases despite the overall decline.

See Graph of Statewide Trends

See Table of County Foreclosure Activity

California Foreclosure Report Methodology Rankings are based on population per foreclosure sale. NOD indicates the number of Notices of Default that were filed at the county, and NTS indicates filed Notices of Trustee Sale. Sales indicates the number of properties sold at foreclosure auction, including those “sold” back to the lender. Percentage changes are based on monthly Sales. The data presented by ForeclosureRadar is based on county records and individual sales results from daily foreclosure auctions throughout the state – not estimates or projections.

About ForeclosureRadar is the only web site that tracksevery foreclosure in California with daily updates on all foreclosure auctions. ForeclosureRadarfeatures unprecedented tools to search, manage, track and analyze preforeclosure, foreclosure auction, short sale and bank owned real estate. The web site was launched in May 2007 by Sean O’Toole, who spent 15 years building and launching software companies before entering the foreclosure business in 2002 where he has successfully bought and sold more than 150 foreclosure properties. ForeclosureRadar is an indispensable resource for real estate agents, brokers, lenders, investors, mortgage brokers, attorneys and other real estate professionals specializing in the California real estate market.

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Ginny Cain – Cain Communications