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Mortgage Default Notices Drop But Number Still High

— New data out Tuesday from a San Diego-based real estate tracking firm shows the number of home foreclosures in California has likely peaked. But the high rate of foreclosures is expected to linger for a few more years.

San Diego based DataQuick says the number of default notices sent out to homeowners fell more than 10 percent last quarter. But the number is still up more than 18 percent compared to the same time last year. The notices are the first step in the process that leads to foreclosure more than half the time. Analyst John Karevoll says the high rate of foreclosures will probably last about two more years. But he says the reason for foreclosures is changing.

“Most of the foreclosure activity up to the middle part of this year here was due to the fact that those loans were so awful. From the mid part of this year on out, most of the distress that will show up in the housing market is going to be because of the economic downturn,” he says.

Karevoll says there were more than 8,700 default notices sent out in San Diego County last quarter.

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