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GSEs Complete 15K in Foreclosure Prevention Actions

GSE foreclosure starts jumped 10 percent in January, and third-party and foreclosure sales increased 16 percent, according to a Foreclosure Prevention Report released by the Federal Housing Finance Agency on Wednesday.

According to the report, which covered GSE foreclosures and prevention activities over the course of January 2017, foreclosure starts rose from 15,133 to 16,604 between December and January. Third-party and foreclosure sales increased from 5,764 to 6,705 over the same period.

The report also revealed that the GSEs completed nearly 15,000 foreclosure prevention actions for the month. To date, the Enterprises have taken 3.8 million prevention actions.

In January, 9,405 of the foreclosure prevention actions were permanent loan modifications. Since the GSEs’ conservatorship began in September 2008, they have completed 2 million permanent loan modifications—more than half of the Enterprises’ total prevention actions in that time.

Of the Enterprises’ permanent loan modifications in January, the share of those with principal forbearance dipped to 19 percent. Extend-term modifications increased to 44 percent, likely due to strong housing price growth.

According to Wednesday’s report, the serious delinquency rate stayed steady at 1.12 percent for the month, while loans delinquent 30 to 59 days dropped—from 1.45 percent to 1.36 percent—and loans delinquent 60-plus days dipped as well, decreasing from 1.52 percent to 1.49 percent. Short sales and deeds-in-lieu decreased 5 percent, hitting 1,615 in January, while total home forfeiture actions dipped from 15,526 to 14,558.

The Prevention Report comes on the back of the GSE Progress Report, which the FHFA released in late March. The report noted Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s achievements last year, specifically as they relate to goals set in the 2016 Scorecard.

Of the report, FHFA Director Mel Watt said, “In collaboration with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, FHFA has made significant progress in meeting our conservatorship objectives. This report underscores our commitment to transparency as we continue to foster liquidity and efficiency in the housing finance markets, reduce risk to taxpayers and build a new mortgage securitization infrastructure, all in a safe and sound manner.”

To read the full Foreclosure Prevention Report, visit FHFA.gov.

About Author: Aly J. Yale

Aly J. Yale is a freelance writer and editor based in Fort Worth, Texas. She has worked for various newspapers, magazines, and publications across the nation, including The Dallas Morning News and Addison Magazine. She has also worked with both the Five Star Institute and REO Red Book, as well as various other mortgage industry clients on content strategy, blogging, marketing, and more.
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