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Nearly Four Million U.S. Homeowners Now In Forbearance

Keith Griffin
May 04, 2020
Photo credit: Getty Images/AaronAmat

The latest report from the Mortgage Bankers Association shows the number of loans in forbearance has increased to 7.54%, up from last week’s level of 6.99%, bringing the total number of U.S. homeowners now in forbearance to 3.8 million.
 
Mortgages backed by Ginnie Mae had the largest overall share of loans in forbearance by investor type (10.45%). The number of loans in forbearance for depository servicers rose to 8.41%, while the number of loans in forbearance for independent mortgage bank (IMB) servicers increased to 7.13%.
 
“The share of loans in forbearance increased once again in the last full week of April, but the pace of new requests slowed,” said Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s senior vice president and chief economist. “With millions more Americans filing for unemployment over the week, the level of job market distress continues to worsen. That is why we expect that the share of loans in forbearance will continue to grow, particularly as new mortgage payments come due in May.”
 
Other Findings of MBA's Forbearance and Call Volume Survey
 
►The share of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans in forbearance increased relative to the prior week: From 5.46% to 5.85%.
►The share of other loans (e.g. private label securities and portfolio loans) in forbearance increased relative to the prior week: from 7.52% to 8.30%.
►Forbearance requests as a percent of servicing portfolio volume (#) dropped across all investor types for the third consecutive week relative to the prior week: from 1.14% to 0.63%.
 
In terms of weekly servicer call center volume, calls decreased from 10.0% to 7.2%, the lowest level reported for this survey series that began in early March. The average speed to answer dropped relative to the prior week from 5.0 minutes to 2.4 minutes, as abandonment rates decreased from 9.9% to 5.8%. The average call length declined for first time in six weeks, from 7.7 minutes to 6.9 minutes.
 
MBA’s latest Forbearance and Call Volume Survey covers the period from April 20-26, 2020, and represents almost 77% of the first-mortgage servicing market (38.4 million loans).

 
 
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