Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Lawler: How Many Folks Have “Lost Their Homes” to Foreclosure/Short Sales/DILs?

by Bill McBride on 2/02/2011 05:30:00 PM

CR: This is an interesting question and hard to answer ... the following is from economist Tom Lawler ...

How Many Folks Have “Lost Their Homes” to Foreclosure/Short Sales/DILs Over the Past Few Years?

According to Hope Now estimates, completed foreclosure sales (rounded) were about as follows over the past few years.

YearCompleted Foreclosure
2007514,000
2008914,000
2009949,000
20101,070,000

While these numbers are disturbingly high, they are not nearly as large as one would have expected given the surge in seriously delinquent loans and loans in the process of foreclosure. For the latter, here is a chart based on data from the MBA’s National Delinquency Survey, which covers “over 85%” of total 1-4 family first-lien mortgages.

MBA Delinquency
On one side, the “completed foreclosure sales” understates the number of homes “lost,” given that many homeowners have “lost” their homes but been able to negotiate a short sale or (much less likely) done a deed in lieu of foreclosure. While there are no official estimates of either short sales or DILs, there is no doubt that the volume of short sales increased dramatically in 2009 and 2010.

Using CoreLogic’s estimates and grossing them up to reflect its incomplete geographic coverage, one would get short sales estimates of around 78,000 for 2007, 164,000 for 2008, 278,000 for 2009, and 331,000 for 2010. However, based on data reported by lenders on short sales in the OCC/OTS mortgage metrics reports, the CoreLogic estimates of short sales look way too high for 2007 and 2008 (the 2009 estimates look OK, but the 2010 estimates – which admittedly are not available for the full year – look a tad low). Using instead my own estimates for 2008 through 2010, here’s what completed foreclosure sales plus short sales might look like (I don’t have a DIL estimate, but it appears as if the volume of DILs was pretty low).

YearCompleted Foreclosure SalesShort SalesTotal
2008914,00095,0001,009,000
2009949,000263,0001,212,000
20101,070,000375,0001,445,000

On the other hand, the above numbers could well OVERSTATE significantly the number of homeowners who lost their primary home either to foreclosure or to a short sale. A “significant” % of completed foreclosure sales has been completed foreclosures on non-owner-occupied homes, though estimates vary as to what that % has been. In addition, not all short sales have involved homeowners “involuntarily” leaving their home, but who instead wanted to (for economic or other reasons) move and who were able to negotiate a short sale with their lender.

So what is the right number for folks who lost their residence to foreclosure, a short sales, or a DIL? I don’t rightly know.

It is pretty clear, however, that overall foreclosure moratoria, foreclosure delays, modifications, and other workout activity continued to keep the number of homeowners who “lost” their homes to foreclosure massively lower than one would have expected given the delinquency/in foreclosure numbers.

YearCompleted Foreclosure Sales plus Short SalesLoans in Foreclosure/90+ Delinquent at end of previous year
20081,009,0001,664,760
20091,212,0002,859,959
20101,445,0004,296,018

Note: the loans in foreclosure/90+ delinquent are derived from the MBA National Delinquency Survey, which only covers somewhere around 85-87% of the total 1-4 family first-lien mortgage market. A crude estimate of the “total” market would “gross up” the above numbers by around 1.163 (or 1/0.86).

CR Note: This was from housing economist Tom Lawler.

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