Mortgage Delinquencies Set New Record

September 21, 2009 No Comments »

up and up

The 30-day mortgage delinquency rate hit a new record last month, according to credit bureau Equifax.

The company told Reuters that 7.58 percent of U.S. homeowners with a mortgage were at least 30 days behind in August, up from 7.32 percent in July.

It was the fourth straight monthly increase in delinquencies, and the mortgage lates are apparently accelerating, at least on a year-over-year basis.

A year ago, 4.89 percent of mortgages were 30 days past due; in August 2007 the rate was 3.44 percent, according to Equifax data.

Meanwhile, subprime mortgage delinquencies now top 41 percent, up from around 39 percent in the prior five months.

Bankruptcy filings were also up 32 percent from a year earlier, though not as bad as the 35 percent year-over-year increase in July.

Interestingly, consumers are still keeping up with other bills, with credit card delinquencies down for the third straight month (even subprime card delinquencies).

This could indicate strategic default and/or the belief that keeping up with mortgage payments is just too far out of reach for many Americans.

For millions of underwater homeowners, there’s simply no incentive to continue paying the mortgage, even at a reduced (modified) rate.

Who cares if you save $250 a month on your mortgage if you’re $100,000 in the hole?

Leave A Response