California foreclosure filings were down in April for the first time since the beginning of the year, ForeclosureRadar.com says in its latest California Foreclosure Report. Despite the decline in filings, the inventory of properties in pre-foreclosure or scheduled for sale only dipped slightly, as the drop in filings were offset by an increase in the time to foreclose.
Notice of trustee sale filings, which set the date and time of auction and serve as a homeowner's final notice before sale, totaled 30,578 in April, representing a 10.25% drop from March. Notice of default filings, meanwhile, dropped 16.01% month over month to 27,832 filings.
Foreclosure cancellations continue to climb, ForeclosureRadar.com reports, increasing by more than 32% from the beginning of the year. The number of properties sold to third parties also continues to climb, helped again this month by slightly better discounts, the research firm says.
"The steady rise in cancellations leads us to believe that loan modifications and short sales are gaining traction" says Sean O'Toole, founder and CEO of ForeclosureRadar.com. "I'd caution, however, that cancellations also occur due to filing errors and extended postponements, which require the notice of trustee sale to be re-filed. In fact, 14.6 percent of new notice of trustee filings in April were on previously canceled foreclosures."