Mortgage Delinquencies Remain Near 10-Year Low

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The share of home mortgage loan payments that are 30 days or more past due fell from 5.3% in April 2016 to 4.8% in April 2017. The foreclosure inventory rate fell from 1.0% to 0.7% in the same period.

The share of mortgages that transitioned from current to 30 days past due was 1.0% in April 2016, compared with 1.2% in April 2017. This year’s rate is equal to the transition rate just before the housing crisis struck, and well below the peak rate of 2% in November 2008.

The data were reported Tuesday by CoreLogic in its Loan Performance Insights report. Early-stage delinquencies, defined as 30 to 59 days past due, were trending slightly higher in April 2017 at 2.2%, compared with the year-ago rate of 2.0%. The share of mortgages that were 60 to 89 days past due in April 2017 was 0.6%, unchanged compared with last year’s rate. According to CoreLogic, measuring early-stage delinquency rates is important for analyzing the health of the mortgage market.

CoreLogic’s chief economist, Dr. Frank Nothaft, said:

Most major indicators of mortgage performance improved in April, showing that the market continues to benefit from improved economic growth and home price increases. Regionally, with the exception of several energy industry intensive states — Alaska and North Dakota — the rest of the U.S. continues to see improvements in mortgage performance. While overall performance is improving, it reflects the older legacy pipeline of loans that continue to heal …

Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic, added:

Delinquency rates are down virtually across the board as the rebound in the U.S. housing market continues to gather steam. It appears likely that delinquency rates will continue to fall for some time, but at a moderating pace. As we look forward, improved fundamentals provide us with a firm foundation and we must now increase our attention to carefully expand the supply of affordable housing stock and ensure that mortgage lending policies help to prudently promote first-time homeownership.

The three states with the lowest 30-plus delinquency rate in January 2017 were North Dakota (2.1%), Colorado (2.3%) and Montana (2.7%). The 30-plus delinquency rate was highest in Mississippi (8.6%), Louisiana (8.3%) and New Jersey (7.5%).