A real estate tracking firm says lenders filed more than 135,000 mortgage default notices against California homeowners during the past quarter, an 80 percent jump from the previous quarter.
MDA DataQuick says in a report Wednesday the increase was likely due to the ongoing recession and to lenders playing catch-up after a temporary lull in foreclosure activity.
The firm says the latest figures for the period ending March 31 were up from about 75,000 during the final quarter of 2008.
The latest figures marked a 19 percent increase from the roughly 114,000 recorded in the year-ago period.
Recorded default notices previously peaked in the second quarter of 2008 at nearly 122,000.
Notices of default are the first step in the formal foreclosure process.