After about two months of steady improvement in COVID-related mortgage leniency activity across the country, the numbers have risen, according to data analysts at Black Knight.
As of last Tuesday, 2.33 million, or 44%, of homeowners remain on COVID-related forbearance plans, including 2.6% of Fannie / Freddie loans. 7.8% of FHA / VA loans and 5% of personal and portfolio loans.
After reporting the latest numbers showing a 20,000 increase in Active Forbearance Plans, Black Knight officials report that the increase is not too much of a concern and is not entirely unexpected.
“These mid-month increases have been relatively frequent in recent months,” it said.
Despite this increase, the planned volume fell by 228,000 or -8.9% compared to the same period in the previous year.
Both entry and exit activity fell this month, with exits hitting their lowest weekly level since late February, reports Black Knight.
The increase was mainly in portfolio and privately securitized mortgages, reports Black Knight. That shows a 31,000 increase in forbearance plans for these types of loans this week.
The leniency rate for government-sponsored loans continues to fall.
Loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the number is down by 9,000. Federal Housing Administration-sponsored mortgage loans and VA mortgage loans fell by 2,000.
According to researchers at Black Knight, next week’s statistics, which will include the last days of April, could improve further from the previous month. More than 240,000 plans should expire in April, it said.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently proposed changes to help prevent impending enforcement measures since federal foreclosure measures – forbearance programs – will eventually expire.
The CFPB reports that more homeowners are behind on their mortgages than they have ever been since 2010, the height of the Great Recession. Nearly 1.7 million borrowers are projected to quit leniency programs in September and the following months, with their mortgage payments many years or more behind.
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