Andrew Edwards, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/15/2011 12:00:01 AM PST
The so-called “shadow inventory” of future foreclosures may be about to fall on Southern California’s real estate markets.
In San Bernardino County, foreclosure filings jumped nearly 30 percent from October to November, new numbers show. Los Angeles County’s foreclosure activity jumped 15 percent.
The two areas’ foreclosure activity increased by similar percentages when November’s filings are compared to the same month one year prior.
Those numbers reflect all types of foreclosure filings, and do not necessarily reflect how many proceedings will end with people losing their homes.
But a more focused look at the numbers show a rising number of homes being put up for auction.
In November, the number of San Bernardino filings for notices of trustee sales rocketed 80 percent to affect 2,253 homes.
Those filings signal a new influx of distressed properties, said Kat Hegg, a real estate agent at Hegg Team Realty in Fontana.
“That means they’re getting ready for a busy January,” she said.
Hegg’s service area stretches from La Verne to Redlands. She said banks will be unlikely to kick people out of their homes around Christmas time, but things could change in 2012.
In Los Angeles County, trustee sale notices jumped 67 percent, affecting 3,560 homes.
RealtyTrac, a foreclosure listing firm with offices in Irvine, released the new data today. The statistics appear to provide further evidence to the company’s viewpoint that the slowdown in foreclosures that took place earlier this year could trend that would not be sustained.
“We were looking at an artificial lull in foreclosure activity and now we’re coming out of it,” RealtyTrac spokesman Daren Blomquist said.
In early and mid-2011, RealtyTrac analysts explained decreases in foreclosure activity as the result of banks adopting more deliberative procedures after the “robosigning” scandal of the previous year.
“Robosigning” refers to banks initiating foreclosure processes without actually following the proper legal requirements. If RealtyTrac’s viewpoint is the correct one, slower procedures have allowed many people to remain in homes they cannot afford.
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