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Mortgage Delinquencies Hit Four-year High

The share of mortgage loans that became delinquent in April outpaces anything seen during the Great Recession and is the highest rate on record in 21 years, according to CoreLogic’s data. During the month of April, 3.4% of mortgages went from current to 30 days past due, outpacing the 2% high recorded in late 2008.

The overall national delinquency rate in April stood at 6.1%, according to CoreLogic’s Loan Performance Insight Report, released Tuesday. CoreLogic clarified that all loans in forbearance are counted in its report as in past-due or delinquent status.

Not only does April’s delinquency rate mark the highest in four years, but it also brings an end to 27 straight months of falling annual delinquency rates.

“Despite the scale and suddenness of the pandemic, mortgage delinquency has yet to emerge as a major issue, thanks to government COVID-19 relief programs and other housing finance industry efforts,” said Frank Martell, President and CEO of CoreLogic. “As the true impact of the economic shutdown during the second quarter of 2020 becomes clearer, we can expect to see a rise in delinquencies in the next 12-18 months—especially as forbearance periods under the CARES Act come to a close.”

The share of mortgages in early-stage delinquency in April was significantly higher than the shares that were seriously delinquent. Instead, the serious delinquency rate wallowed to its lowest level in about 20 years, and the foreclosure rate experienced a slight decline as well.

The share of loans that were between 30 and 59 days past due in April was 4.2%, a significant jump from the 1.7% recorded last April. On the other hand, the share of loans that were seriously delinquent, meaning at least 90 days past due, was 0.3%, down slightly from 0.4% a year ago.

New York had the highest loan delinquency rate of any state, at 10%. Louisiana, New Jersey, and Mississippi had the next-highest delinquency rates. South Dakota had the lowest loan delinquency rate at 3%.

Among metro areas, those that typically serve as tourist destinations are suffering high delinquency rates. For example, CoreLogic pointed out that Kahului, Hawaii; Atlantic City, New Jersey; and Las Vegas all experienced a 5 percentage point or higher rises in delinquencies in April.

Miami charted the highest delinquency rate among the major metros across the nation with 11.5% of all properties in some stage of delinquency, which is 6.7 percentage points higher than a year ago.

Denver fared the best with 3.7% of properties in delinquency.

The serious delinquency rate increased in 63 metros in April while remaining stable in 135 metros.

Looking ahead, CoreLogic anticipates a spike in late-stage delinquencies and foreclosures this year. The analytics firm already released its home price prediction, anticipating a 6.6% decline in prices by May 2021, which would diminish many borrowers’ existing equity.

About Author: Krista F. Brock

Krista Franks Brock is a professional writer and editor who has covered the mortgage banking and default servicing sectors since 2011. Previously, she served as managing editor of DS News and Southern Distinction, a regional lifestyle publication. Her work has appeared in a variety of print and online publications, including Consumers Digest, Dallas Style and Design, DS News and DSNews.com, MReport and theMReport.com. She holds degrees in journalism and art from the University of Georgia.

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