Cities With the Most Delinquent Mortgages

The housing boom increased the value of the equity in millions of homes across America. What a home is worth was driven higher, and the ratio to home mortgage balances improved. It is a very sharp contrast to the collapse of the market in 2007 and 2008, when delinquent mortgages and foreclosures surged across the country.

Home values have increased, on average, by about 20% year over year each month nationwide. In some cities, the figures are closer to 30%. Most of the homes affected have mortgage balances that drop each month as people pay them down, so the spread between home value and mortgage value improved.

The real estate price surge has been driven by several factors. The first is that mortgage rates dropped to an extraordinarily low of 3% for a 30-year fixed mortgage. (This has almost doubled over the past several months as the Federal Reserve has aggressively raised rates.) People found homes more affordable than at most times in the past several decades.

Another force that drove up prices is the mass migration of Americans due to their ability to work from home. They flocked to places they preferred to live rather than those where they had to live due to their jobs.

A decline in home prices already has started in some markets. Certainly, the rise in prices in many has become muted. These two facts and a weakening economy will strain the pocketbooks of some homeowners.

The CoreLogic Loan Performance Insights for September 2022 was just released. It examined the health of the housing markets at the national, state and local levels. For the most part, the news was good. Delinquencies (those between 30 and 59 days past due) of loans was 2.9% nationally in June. In two states, the figure was above 5%. They were Louisiana and Mississippi, each at 5.3%. Both are poor states based on income, although CoreLogic did not draw a conclusion about that fact.

CoreLogic provided 24/7 Wall. St. with data on the 20 cities with the highest delinquency rates. The figures were for CBSAs, one designation for metro areas. Two cities have rates above 8%: Pine Bluff, Ark., at 8.3% and Laredo, Texas, at 8.1%. Two cities had rates of 7% or so. In Vineland, N.J., the figure was 7.7%, and in Odessa, Texas, it was 7.0%.

These are the American cities with the highest percentage of mortgages that are seriously delinquent:

  • Pine Bluff, Ark. (8.3)
  • Laredo, Texas (8.1)
  • Vineland, N.J. (7.7)
  • Odessa, Texas (7.0)
  • McAllen, Texas (6.6)
  • Mobile, Ala. (6.0)
  • Shreveport, La. (5.9)
  • Beaumont, Texas (5.8)
  • Watertown N.Y. (5.8),
  • Alexandria, La. (5.8)
  • Beckley, W.V. (5.8)
  • Glens Falls, N.Y. (5.8)
  • Florence, S.C. (5.8)
  • Weirton, W.V. (5.8)
  • Johnstown, Pa. (5.8)
  • Monroe, La. (5.7)
  • Houma, La. (5.7)
  • Binghamton, N.Y. (5.7)
  • Brownsville, Texas (5.6)
  • East Stroudsburg, Pa. (5.6)

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