Riverside County had the second-highest foreclosure rate in the state last year, a real estate tracking firm reported today.
A total 31,114 mortgage default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions were recorded countywide in 2012, translating to 1 in 26 households in some stage of foreclosure, according to Irvine-based RealtyTrac.
The number of filings was down 24 percent from 2011 -- and 44 percent below the total for 2010, figures showed.
San Joaquin County was No. 1, with 1 in 25 households in default.
In the last quarter of 2012, Riverside County was also No. 2, while Stanislaus County was No. 1, according to RealtyTrac. San Bernardino County was No. 3.
Nationally, just over 1.83 million properties slipped into foreclosure in 2012, according to RealtyTrac. The activity represented a 3 percent drop from 2011 and a 36 percent decline from the peak reached in 2010.
RealtyTrac Vice President Daren Blomquist said the foreclosure picture in the months ahead was obscured by some state laws favoring a more drawn-out process of repossessing properties. He predicted a "backlog of delayed foreclosures building up" in some states.
California ranked No. 6 in U.S. foreclosure activity in 2012, with 319,162 properties going into default, or 1 in 43, according to RealtyTrac. The figure was 25 percent below the number of filings in 2011 and 41 percent less than in 2010.
Florida had the highest foreclosure rate nationwide, with 1 in 32 households in default last year.