The numbers of Inland families who lost their homes to foreclosure surged dramatically last month, as risky subprime mortgages strained the budgets of more households.
Riverside County posted 7,266 notices of defaults, trustee sales and lender repossessions, up 347 percent from a year earlier, and San Bernardino County posted 4,876 such notices, up 351 percent in a year, according to a report Tuesday by RealtyTrac, a foreclosure marketing firm based in Irvine.
In California, Riverside County ranked fourth and San Bernardino County ranked eighth in foreclosure activity.
"I think a lot of the loans going bad now are the highest-risk kind of loans," said Rick Sharga, RealtyTrac's vice president of marketing. "They were probably subprimes with adjustable rates and probably with 100 percent financing."
An especially telling statistic is the comparison of bank repossessions from last year, or even the prior month, to August.
In Riverside County, 21 homes were seized by lenders in August 2006. In July, 189 were seized. Last month 1,198 homes were repossessed. In San Bernardino County, 10 homes were seized a year ago. Lenders repossessed 518 in July. Last month, it was 708.
Properties with mortgages in default are increasingly being lost to foreclosure because there is not enough equity left in them to give their owners an option to sell or refinance, Sharga said.
Personally I think some of those numbers are way off. I can't believe there were only 189 homes repo'd last month in Riverside.