California home foreclosures set new record

Foreclosure sign

 The third quarter’s total surpasses 24,000, which is a record. ‘It’s working its way to the Westside,’ an agent says.

The Westside is the pricey part of Los Angeles. Default notices (which precede foreclosures) rose to 72,571 statewide, also a record. That means lots more foreclosures are coming.

[most  of a foreclosure agent’s listings] were in the San Fernando Valley and South Los Angeles, but about 10% of her listings are now in a more affluent part of town.

We moved from the San Fernando Valley in January. There were few if any foreclosures then. A recent check on a foreclosure site showed hundreds of current foreclosures in the area we lived in. While the Valley is certainly less affluent than the Westside, home prices there are still at least $500,000.

So what you have is a solidly middle-class area that is getting hammered by the subprime debacle. How much longer until the Valley resembles parts of San Bernardino, which got whacked hard first, with abandoned homes, thickets of For Sale signs, overgrown front yards and swimming pools full of algae?

Real homes. Real people. Dreams and plans shattered. And we’re still just on the leading edge of the mortgage resets that are triggering foreclosures.