Remember this is still near the record number of defaults.
Lenders recorded 69,799 NODs at California county offices in the fourth quarter, down from more than 84,000 in the fourth quarter of 2009 and the lowest level since the second quarter of 2007.
"We don’t know how much of the decline is due to less household financial distress, and how much is due to shifts in lender and servicer foreclosure policies," DataQuick President John Walsh said. "The level of default activity would certainly be higher if it weren’t for alternative strategies such as short sales, or even lengthening grace periods."
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American Banker reported this week that several lawsuits brought by homeowners contend that notices of default completed in nonjudicial states were done improperly. CNBC reported Tuesday that major lenders halted recording NODs to correct the problem.