The performance of first-lien mortgages serviced by eight national banks improved during the first quarter of 2015, with 94.2 percent of mortgages current and performing. According to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), this percent equates to a 1.1 percent increase in performance when compared to a year earlier — when the percentage stood at 93.1.

The performance of first-lien mortgages serviced by eight national banks improved during the first quarter of 2015, with 94.2 percent of mortgages current and performing.

According to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), this percent equates to a 1.1 percent increase in performance when compared to a year earlier — when the percentage stood at 93.1.

These findings are based on a portfolio of mortgages that account for nearly 44 percent of all residential mortgages currently outstanding.

Of this portfolio, 58.6 percent of mortgages were serviced for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. These mortgages are performing better than average, with 97.4 percent current and performing.

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Overall, the percentage of mortgages that were 30 to 59 days past due represented 1.9 percent of the portfolio, a 7 percent decrease from a year earlier.

Seriously delinquent mortgages — those that are 60 or more days past due or held by bankrupt borrowers whose payments are 30 days or more past due — made up 2.6 percent of the portfolio. This volume equates to a 16.4 percent decrease from a year earlier.

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The number of mortgages in the process of foreclosure at the end of the first quarter fell to 299,424, a decrease of 30.8 percent from a year earlier. This total equates to 1.3 percent of all mortgages.

Improved economic conditions and foreclosure prevention assistance contributed to the decline in foreclosure activity, according to OCC.

Servicers initiated 83,058 new foreclosures during the quarter, a decrease of 8.6 percent from a year earlier. Additionally, the number of completed foreclosures decreased 31.5 percent from a year earlier to 38,509.

Including modifications, trial-period plans and shorter-term payment plans, servicers implemented nearly 190,000 home retention actions.

On the flip side, servicers completed 47,430 home forfeiture actions, which include completed foreclosures, short sales and deed-in-lieu-of-foreclosure actions.

More than 89.2 percent of modifications reduced monthly principal and interest payments, with 55.6 percent of modifications reducing payments by 20 percent or more. Overall, modifications reduced payments by $271 per month, on average.

Approximately 53 percent of mortgages modified between January 2008 and December 2014 were active at the end of the first quarter. More than 72 percent of these mortgages are current and performing, with 22.4 percent delinquent and 5.5 percent in the process of foreclosure.

Email Erik Pisor.


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