In Depth Analysis: CalculatedRisk Newsletter on Real Estate (Ad Free) Read it here.

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

LPS: March Foreclosure Starts increase, Foreclosure Sales lowest since December 2010

by Calculated Risk on 5/02/2012 09:15:00 AM

Note: U.S. District Court Judge Collyer approved the consent orders for the mortgage servicer settlement on April 5th, so we still have to wait a little longer to see the impact of the agreement on delinquencies.

LPS released their Mortgage Monitor report for March today.

According to LPS, 7.09% of mortgages were delinquent in March, down from 7.57% in February, and down from 7.78% in March 2011.

LPS reports that 4.14% of mortgages were in the foreclosure process, up slightly from 4.13% in February, and down slightly from 4.15% in March 2011.

This gives a total of 11.23% delinquent or in foreclosure. It breaks down as:

• 1,888,000 loans less than 90 days delinquent.
• 1,643,000 loans 90+ days delinquent.
• 2,060,000 loans in foreclosure process.

For a total of 5,591,000 loans delinquent or in foreclosure in March. This is down from 6,333,000 in March 2011.

This following graph shows the total delinquent and in-foreclosure rates since 1995.

Delinquency Rate Click on graph for larger image.

The total delinquency rate has fallen to 7.09% from the peak in January 2010 of 10.97%. A normal rate is probably in the 4% to 5% range, so there is a long ways to go.

The in-foreclosure rate was at 4.14%, down from the record high in October 2011 of 4.29%. There are still a large number of loans in this category (about 2.06 million).

Delinquency RateMost of the decline in the delinquency rate was part of the normal seasonal pattern.

Every year some people fail to pay their mortgage during the holidays, and then they catch up by March. This graph shows the usual decline in the delinquency rate from December to March, and the decline in 2012 was about normal (in percentage terms).

The third graph shows the break down of loans "in foreclosure" by process (judicial vs. non-judicial).

Delinquency RateThe foreclosure inventory in judicial states is still near record highs.

The foreclosure inventory in non-judicial states is much lower and has been slowly declining.

The last graph (all provided by LPS Applied Analytics) shows foreclosure starts and sales.

Foreclosure Starts and Sales Foreclosure starts increased in March, but are still down 31.1% year over year.

Foreclosure sales were at their lowest point since December of 2010.

This was before the mortgage servicer settlement was approved in early April, so it is still too early to see the impact of the settlement.

There is much more in the Mortgage Monitor report.