Non-foreclosure solutions – including loan modifications, short sales, deeds-in-lieu and workout plans – continued to outpace foreclosure sales by more than four to one in August, according to HOPE NOW, a voluntary, private-sector alliance of mortgage servicers, investors, mortgage insurers and nonprofit counselors.
Servicers completed approximately 32,000 loan modifications in August – a decrease of about 3% compared with the approximately 33,000 completed in July and a decrease of about 22% compared with 41,000 in August 2014.
Of those loan modifications, about 23,000 were through proprietary programs and 9,489 were completed via the federal government's Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP).
There were about 7,100 short sales completed in August – a decrease of 12% from 8,100 in July and a decrease of 28% from about 9,900 in August 2014.
There were about 1,600 deeds-in-lieu completed in August – unchanged compared with July but down 32% compared with about 2,300 in August 2014.
There were about 56,000 foreclosure starts in August – an increase of 6% compared with 53,000 in July but down 16% compared with 67,000 in August 2014.
There were approximately 27,000 foreclosure sales – a decrease of 7% from about 29,000 in July and a decrease of about 23% compared with 35,000 in August 2014.
Approximately 1.69 million properties were delinquent (60 days or more past due) in August – down slightly from 1.68 million in July and down 14.0% from 1.96 million in August 2014.
The report also compares some of these same key stats to data from five years ago, universally accepted as the peak of the housing crisis, showing significant improvement at the nationwide level.
‘The best news from our data is that the overall health of the housing market has seen significant improvement from five years ago,’ says Eric Selk, executive director of HOPE NOW, in a statement. ‘Foreclosure and delinquency metrics are seeing a decrease of double digits. This points to a recovery of the market, as mortgage delinquency is returning to normal levels.
‘Total industry solutions continue to track favorably with foreclosure sales, which indicate progress in the recovery of the overall housing market,’ Selk adds. ‘Although there is good news on a nationwide level, with respect to foreclosures and serious mortgage delinquencies, HOPE NOW's members remained focused on specific markets that need additional support. These markets have been slower to recover and face a variety of housing issues.’