But while mortgage debt rose, mortgage balances were 4.4 percent below the peak levels set in 2008, while some states that were severely impacted in the recession—including Arizona, California, Florida and Nevada—have balances far below their respective highs. Furthermore, the median credit score of borrowers for new mortgages dropped in the fourth quarter from 760 to 755.
Mortgage debt also recorded the second lowest household debt in the household quarter, with 1.3 percent of mortgages in serious delinquency. Mortgage balances account for 71 percent of total household debt, the largest component. There were 52.7 million mortgage accounts in the fourth quarter, up from 52 million on year earlier.