The Federal Housing Financing Agency (FHFA) released its Foreclosure Prevention Refinance and FPM Report covering January 2020 and found that the GSEs posted 9,108 foreclosure preventions for the month.
The GSEs have prevented 4.42 million foreclosure actions since entering conservatorship in September 2008.
Regarding these actions, 50% were permanent loan modifications. Specifically, the report noted a total of 5,827 permanent loan modifications during the month of January, causing the total tally to wind up at 2,4 million.
The FHFA report also revealed that January posted numerous modifications with principal forbearance—25% of all modifications. As for extend-term only modifications, these accounted for 64% of all loan modifications in January 2020. Short sales and deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure experienced a slight uptick in January, rising 30% from the previous month (December 2019) to peak at a total of 442 on record.
The GSE’s January 2020 mortgage performance was also showcased in the report, with FHFA revealing a small drop in the serious delinquency rate, lowering from December 2019’s 0.65% to 0.64%. Regarding the GSE’s foreclosures, January 2020 saw a 27% rise in third-party and foreclosure sales, from 2,537 in December to 3,225. Also experiencing an uptick were foreclosure starts, which started at 10,670 in December 2019 and rose to 11,624 in January.
The report also highlighted refinancing, revealing that the total refinance volume for January dropped. January saw a decline in mortgage rates, with the average interest rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage lowering to 3.62%, down from December 2019’s rate of 3.72%.
FHFA also shared that a total of four refinances went through during this period via the High LTV Refinance Option program. After including these recent additions, the report revealed that total refinances made possible thanks to this High LTV Refinance Option brought the current tally to 15 altogether since the program first began. As for the cash-out refinances of January 2020, the percentage stayed steady at 42%, a mark that is lower than the peak that was seen in the latter part of 2018.