Most Loan Modifications Expected to Fail

June 16, 2010 No Comments »

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While both HAMP and loan servicer-specific loan modifications are on the rise, most are expected to re-default, according to a new report from Fitch Ratings.

Roughly 15 percent of all residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) have received either a HAMP or non-HAMP loan modification through May, up from 10 percent in September 2009.

And nearly 35 percent of RMBS subprime loans have received at least one loan modification, up from 25 percent during the same period.

But the seemingly large numbers continue to fall short of expectations, and could slow thanks to new requirements like verifying income before issuing trial loan modifications.

Of course, the quality of loan modifications may improve as a result, as loans mods that relied upon stated income were much less likely to convert to permanent modifications under HAMP.

Fitch maintains that 65 percent to 75 percent of modified subprime and Alt-A loans will default again within a year.

For prime loans, the re-default rate is slightly lower at 55 to 65 percent, but it still makes you wonder if loan modifications even work?

And roughly 15 percent of all modified loans have received at least one additional modification after the first one failed.

So what’s the solution?

Well, Fitch thinks the expanded use of short sales will “help the loan resolution landscape over time.”

Just a shame they result in a borrower losing their home, but it seems that’s the only real answer to this pesky foreclosure problem.

(photo: hans.gerwitz)

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