RIVERSIDE (CBS) — The dog days of summer did little to help the housing market in Southern California boost its sluggish recovery.

Riverside County had the third-highest foreclosure rate in the state in August, with the number of filings virtually unchanged from July, a real estate tracking firm reported Thursday.

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A total 7,039 mortgage default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions were recorded countywide in August, according to Irvine-based RealtyTrac — meaning about 1 in 109 households were in some stage of foreclosure, placing the county at No. 3 in statewide foreclosure activity.

RealtyTrac says Stanislaus County was No. 1, with 1 in 95 households in default; San Joaquin County was No. 2, with 1 in 100, Merced County was No. 4, with 1 in 111; and for the first time Sacramento County was in the top five at No. 5, with 1 in 113.

Riverside County’s foreclosure activity dropped a half percent from July and was 31 percent lower than a year-ago, figures showed.

Nationally, 338,836 properties slid into foreclosure in August — a four percent increase from the prior month but a 5 percent drop compared with August 2009.

“The trend lines of decreasing default notices and increasing bank repossessions converged in August, with virtually the same number of new default notices and bank repossessions for the month — a clear indication that the clogged foreclosure pipeline is being carefully managed on both ends by lenders and servicers,” said RealtyTrac CEO James J. Saccacio.

California ranked fourth in the nation in foreclosure filings, with 66,143
residential properties — or 1 in 194 — in default, down 3 percent from July and 25 percent from a year ago, according to the most recent data.

Nevada was No. 1, followed by Florida and Arizona, with Idaho just behind California at No. 5.

(©2010 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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