The national mortgage delinquency rate was about 3.64% of all loans in October, down 8.2% from September and down nearly 18% from October 2017, according to Black Knight’s First Look report.
The decrease follows a sharp increase in September that was typical of seasonal cycles.
About 1.844 million loans were 30 days or more past due, as of the end of the month, a decrease of about 165,000 compared with September and a decrease of about 378,000 compared with a year earlier.
Of those loans, about 499,000 were seriously delinquent (90 days or more past due but not in foreclosure), a decrease of about 14,000 compared with September and down about 90,000 compared with October 2017.
It was the lowest serious delinquency rate in more than 12 years.
Improvements in hurricane-related delinquencies associated with Harvey and Irma – which spiked in late 2017 – are contributing to the strong year-over-year improvements, Black Knight says.
However, there was an increase in foreclosure starts, which jumped 26.5% compared with September and were up 0.80% compared with a year earlier.
There were about 50,600 foreclosure starts nationwide in October, compared with about 40,000 in September.
Despite foreclosure starts seeing a monthly increase from September’s nearly 18-year low, the number of loans in active foreclosure fell slightly and has decreased by 24% from last year.
The foreclosure inventory rate stood at 0.52%, down 0.54% from the previous month and down 24% from a year earlier.
As of the end of the month there were about 267,000 residential properties in the foreclosure pipeline, down about 1,000 from September and down about 81,000 from October 2017.
Prepayment activity – now driven primarily by housing turnover – climbed 14% but remains 29% percent below last year’s level. The prepayment rate in October was 0.80%.