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Southern California’s Foreclosure Work Running At One-Tenth Its Peak Pace

The ugly end of the previous business boom may still be sending economic flashbacks.

The thing to be worried about is the undergoing extended economic upswing as the business boom is nearing its end, which could result in a slowdown, causing trouble for the real estate market.

Despite the changes in the ongoing expansion, one thing is constant among the housing trend in Southern California; that is, people are still making their mortgage payments. Moreover, the existing foreclosure work is running at about one-tenth of its peak pace.

Doing an analysis, if you compile the regional data on total foreclosure filings, consisting of scheduled auctions, default notices and bank repossessions, you’ll find the lowest level of distress in over a decade.

A total of 12,435 foreclosure filings were made in the first quarter in the six Southern California counties, a reduction of 23 percent in a year. Comparing the results for the last 10 years, that’s a 64 percent reduction in a decade. A similar case happened in the second quarter of 2006, when the foreclosure filing mill ran slower.

However, soon after, at the beginning of 2007, the local market turned ghostly real fast. One has to tread carefully, but rest assured that the level of distressed properties today is 91 percent lower from the peak of foreclosure mania.

In the first three months of this year, a total of 8,584 filings were made across the rest of California, which is a reduction of 29 percent in a year, and 92 percent from 2009.

Troubled homeowners have experienced similar drops in several Southern California counties when compared to a year ago. The average levels recorded in 2009 in these counties are listed below:

Riverside: So far in 2017, a total of 2,216 filings have been recorded, which is 22 percent off in a year and 92 percent below from 2009.

Los Angeles: A total of 4,900 filings have been recorded in the first quarter of 2017, which is 27 percent off in a year and down 90 percent from 2009.

San Diego: A total of 1,568 filings have been recorded in the first quarter of 2017, which is down 23 percent in a year and 91 percent below 2009.

San Bernardino: A total of 1,923 filings have been recorded so far this year, which is down 25 percent a year ago and 91 percent below 2009.

Orange: So far, a total of 1,383 filings have been recorded in 2017, which is down 21 percent in a year and 90 percent below 2009.

Ventura: So far, 445 filings have been recorded in 2017, which is down 22 percent in a year and 89 percent below 2009.

If it is any reassuring, only 3.1 percent of California mortgages were late by 30 days or more, as of January. Although it is a broad measure of missed payments, the figure was down from 3.9 percent from last year. The rate of California mortgages is way below the national rate of late mortgages, which is recorded at 5.3 percent. Only four states had batter payment rates on their home loans, which included North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana and Colorado.

Taking a look at employment, the main driving force behind housing in California, California’s economy was adding jobs at the rate of 1.9 percent in February. This is higher than the average 1 percent annual growth rate recorded in California since 1990. In 2008, California became a job loser at the start of the last housing debacle. Soon after, the real estate market collapsed.

Since warning signs are pretty much muted, housing conditions can change fairly rapidly.

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