Sonoma County foreclosures remain at pre-crash levels from before the housing bubble burst.

Sonoma County homeowners lost 71 residential properties in the first quarter of 2014.   That was a 53.9 percent lower than a year earlier and was the lowest for the first quarter since 2006. 

Notices of defaults, the first step in the foreclosure process, increased 12.4 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier.

Some suggest that a similar statewide trend was due to an anomaly surrounding a new state law; the Homeowner Bill of Rights. When the law took effect in January 2013, lenders and loan servicing companies issued far fewer notices of defaults for the next few months.

With the exception of 2013, the new numbers on notices of default on homes in Sonoma county are the lowest for the first quarter since 2006.

Foreclosures spiked in Sonoma county in 2008 because of a dramatic plunge in housing prices. In 2008, homeowners lost a record 2,820 houses and condominiums, compared to 449 last year.

Despite the drop in activity, the losses have been historic.

Since 2007, Sonoma County recorded more than 11,000 foreclosures!  That is more than one in 10 homes with a mortgage.

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