The housing market has boomed this year. People have migrated from the large coastal cities like San Francisco and New York to areas inland where prices are lower and the quality of life is believed to be better. Home sales in places like Boise have exploded. Among the reasons people can relocate are the ability to work from home and mortgage rates at historic lows.
Among the housing trends of 2021 is that few mortgages have been foreclosed on, and only a small number of people have home loans that are delinquent. Despite the surge in home prices brought on by brisk demand, middle-class and upper-class incomes have been good during the economic slump brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Banks screen loans much more carefully than they did in the housing collapse of 2007 and 2008.
Delinquent homes are not unheard of, however, although they are relatively rare. CoreLogic has just released its May Loan Performance Insights report, and most of the conclusions were good news for lenders. Dr. Frank Nothaft, chief economist for CoreLogic, commented: “The rise in home prices has built a substantial home equity cushion for homeowners with a mortgage, reducing the risk of a foreclosure.”
Another conclusion of the report is that 4.7% of home loans in May were more than 30 days delinquent or in foreclosure. The figure in the same month last year was 7.3%.
The two states with the highest delinquency rates are very different from one another. The rates in New York and Louisiana were 5.3%. They could hardly be more distant from one another geographically or distinct in population size, median household income or level of educational attainment.
Perhaps the rates in New York are because of poorer cities like Syracuse and Buffalo. The report does not say.