Wednesday, July 22, 2009

DataQuick: California Mortgage Defaults Edge Down in Q2

by Calculated Risk on 7/22/2009 02:08:00 PM

Please see graph at bottom of post ...

From DataQuick: California Second Quarter Mortgage Defaults Edge Down

The number of foreclosure proceedings started against California homeowners fell slightly in the April-through-June period compared with the prior three months, but remained higher than last year. The dip from earlier this year occurred as lenders and their loan servicers took time to revise procedures and priorities in an environment of continuing home price depreciation, economic distress and mortgage defaults, a real estate information service reported.

Lenders sent out a total of 124,562 default notices during the second quarter (April through June). That was down 8.0 percent from the prior quarter's record 135,431 default notices, and up 2.4 percent from 121,673 in second quarter 2008, according to MDA DataQuick.

"There is a perception that the housing market is dragging along bottom, that it probably won't get much worse, and that the lenders need to get serious about processing the backlog of delinquencies, either with work-outs or foreclosure. We're hearing that some lenders and servicers are doing just that, hiring more people to do the necessary paperwork. That means the foreclosure numbers will probably shoot back up during the third quarter," said John Walsh, DataQuick president.

The median origination month for last quarter's defaulted loans was July 2006, the same as during the first quarter. A year ago the median origination month was April 2006, so the foreclosure process has moved three months forward during the past 12 months.

"Either the mid 2006 loans were particularly nasty, or lenders and servicers haven't kept up with new delinquencies. Looking below the surface statistics it appears likely that it's both," Walsh said.
While most first quarter 2009 foreclosure activity was still concentrated in affordable inland communities, there were signs that the foreclosure problem was intensifying in more expensive areas. The state's most affordable sub-markets, which represent 25 percent of the state's housing stock, accounted for more than 52.0 percent of all default activity in 2008. In first quarter 2009 it fell to 47.5 percent, and last quarter it dipped to 45.0 percent.
emphasis added
There is a lot of interesting data in this report. A few key points:
  • 2009 will probably be another record year for NODs (although the lenders were playing catch-up in Q1)

  • 2006 was a toxic year (probably because that was when house prices peaked or were starting to fall).

  • Defaults are movin' on up into the mid and high priced areas.

    DataQuick NODs Click on graph for larger image in new window.

    This graph shows the Notices of Default (NOD) by year through 20091 in California from DataQuick.

    1 2009 estimated as twice Q1 and Q2 NODs.

    Clearly 2009 is on pace to break the record of 2008, and the pace will probably pickup in the 2nd half of 2009. I'd expect somewhere in the 550 thousand to 600 thousand range for the entire year.