More than half of homeowners who are seriously delinquent on their mortgages are taking advantage of home retention programs. That’s according to the latest Mortgage Monitor Report from the data and analytics division of Black Knight Financial Services Inc., a Fidelity National Financial company.
The monthly Mortgage Monitor Report is based on Black Knight’s repository of loan-level residential mortgage data and performance information, which encompasses about two-thirds of the overall market.
According to this month’s report, of the approximately 952,000 borrowers whose mortgages are 90 or more days past due but not yet in foreclosure, 62 percent are in some form of a home retention program, such as loan modifications and repayment plans.
For those in active foreclosure, about 53 percent of borrowers are in such plans. About 70 percent of all new trial modifications and repayment plans have been through one or more home retention actions in the past.
Ben Graboske, senior vice president of Black Knight Data & Analytics, said that while overall retention actions have decreased over the past two years, they are making up a greater share of that seriously delinquent inventory.
“We’re currently seeing the highest level of saturation yet, but that’s only marginally up from last year,” Graboske said.
“In other words, that saturation level is beginning to flatten. Overall, home retention actions have declined 42 percent over the past two years, but at the same time, have increased 9 percent as a share of that seriously delinquent inventory.”
Although there has been great improvement in both seriously delinquent and active foreclosure inventories, they still remain two and three times their pre-financial crisis norms, respectively, Graboske noted.
Washington, D.C., which uses a nonjudicial foreclosure process, leads the nation with 67 percent of its seriously delinquent inventory having gone through some sort of home retention activity; of these, 26 percent are currently in an active trial modification or repayment plan.
Maryland, Georgia, Texas and Connecticut followed, all having seen 66 percent of their 90-plus-day delinquent inventory participate in some form of home retention action.
States with the highest percentage of noncurrent loans are Mississippi, New Jersey, Louisiana, New York and Maine. Mississippi, Louisiana and New Jersey are also on the list of states with the highest percentage of seriously delinquent loans, and are joined by Rhode Island and Alabama.
States with the lowest percentage of noncurrent loans are Minnesota, Montana, South Dakota, Colorado and North Dakota. But Florida has seen the most improvement, with a 37 percent decline in inventory over the last year, and a 63 percent drop over the last two years, the report found.