Home Foreclosures Drop, Mortgage Loan Delinquencies Rise in First Quarter

Foreclosed home
Foreclosed home

The delinquency rate for mortgage loans at the end of the first quarter of 2013 rose to a seasonally adjusted rate of 7.25%. That is 16 basis points higher than the delinquency rate at the end of the fourth quarter of 2012, but 15 basis points lower than the end of the first quarter of 2012. The loans were made for one-to-four unit residential properties.

The data was published today by the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). The delinquency rate includes loans at least one payment past due but not yet in foreclosure.

Only 0.7% of loans went into the foreclosure process during the first quarter, equal to the fourth-quarter total, and matching the lowest level since the second quarter of 2007. Similarly, the percentage of loans in the foreclosure process fell from 3.74% to 3.55%, the lowest level since the fourth quarter of 2008.

An MBA executive noted:

We are seeing substantial improvements in the foreclosure situation nationally and in many states. The foreclosure inventory measure decreased in 40 states, with states like Florida, California, and Nevada leading the declines. However, 33 states had increases in foreclosure starts, while the pace of decline in the 90+ day category has slowed in recent quarters, the 90+ day measure is now at its lowest since 2008.

Hurricane Sandy had a negative impact on delinquencies and foreclosures in Connecticut, New York and New Jersey in the fourth quarter of last year. In the first quarter of 2013, the three states experienced an overall drop in past due rates. New York had a small increase in 90+ day delinquencies and foreclosures declined across all loan types in New Jersey.

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