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New Data Affirms Continued Declines in Delinquency Rates

Phil Hall
Feb 11, 2020
Photo credit: Getty Images/mareesw

Two new data reports are highlighting the ongoing trend in plummeting delinquency rates.
 
CoreLogic has determined 3.9 percent of mortgages were in some stage of delinquency in November, down by a 0.1 percentage point decline from one year earlier, while the 0.4 percent foreclosure inventory rate was unchanged from one year earlier and tied the prior 12 months as the lowest for any month since at least January 1999.
 
The rate for early-stage delinquencies was two percent in November, a 0.1 percent uptick from one year earlier. The share of mortgages 60 to 89 days past due was 0.6 percent, down from 0.7 percent, and the serious delinquency rate of 1.3 percent was down from the November 2018 reading of 1.5 percent.
 
CoreLogic added that the share of mortgages that transitioned from current to 30 days past due was 1 percent in November, up from 0.8 percent one year earlier. No states posted a year-over-year increase in the overall delinquency rate in November.
 
“Overall delinquency rates remain at 20-year lows spurred on by tight underwriting standards following the onset of the Great Recession, a robust and accelerating economic cycle over the past five years and the increasing underlying health of the housing economy,” said Frank Martell, president and chief executive officer of CoreLogic. “In the Southeast, the 2018 hurricane season left higher overall delinquency rates in its wake, but the region is finally on the mend. In the Midwest, we see a somewhat different picture. Of the 50 metro areas that experienced increases in overall delinquency rates in November, nearly half were in the Midwest. Still, as mortgage rates reach a three-year low, we could expect to see stabilization across markets heading into 2020.”
 
Separately, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reported the delinquency rate for mortgage loans on one- to four-unit residential properties decreased to a seasonally adjusted rate of 3.77 percent of all loans outstanding at the end of the fourth quarter. The delinquency rate was down 20 basis points from the third quarter and 29 basis points from one year ago. The percentage of loans on which foreclosure actions were started in the fourth quarter remained unchanged at 0.21 percent.
 
“The mortgage delinquency rate in the final three months of 2019 fell to its lowest level since the current survey series began in 1979,” said Marina Walsh, MBA’s vice president of industry analysis. “Mortgage delinquencies track closely to the U.S. unemployment rate, and with unemployment at historic lows, it’s no surprise to see so many households paying their mortgage on time.”

 
Published
Feb 11, 2020
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