The Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) released its National Delinquency Survey this past week, showing that foreclosure starts are at their lowest level since the second quarter of 2000, and the delinquency rate for mortgage loans on one-to-four-unit residential properties remains unchanged from the previous quarter.

Mortgages that have gone into foreclosure during the first quarter were 0.35%, down one basis point from the previous quarter, and a decrease of 10 basis points from this same time last year. Delinquent mortgages were at the lowest level since the third quarter of 2006, with a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.77% of all loans outstanding at the end of the first quarter of 2016.


Marina Walsh, MBA’s Vice President of Industry Analysis, offered the following commentary on the survey:

“The delinquency rate of 4.77 percent has returned to typical pre-recession levels and is lower than the historical average of 5.4 percent for the time period from 1979 to the first quarter of 2016.

“The rate at which new foreclosures were initiated in the first quarter was 0.35 percent, the lowest in 16 years, and 10 basis points below the historical average of 0.45 percent. A total of 28 states and Washington, DC, either saw decreases or no change in the foreclosure starts rate this quarter, while the remaining 22 states experienced increases in the foreclosure starts rate. Only two of these 22 states have strictly non-judicial processes in place.

“Continuing a consistent downward trend that began in the second quarter of 2012, the foreclosure inventory rate fell again in the first quarter of 2016 to 1.74 percent, a decrease of three basis points from the previous quarter. Of the 50 states and Washington, DC, 44 states either had no change or saw declines in the foreclosure inventory rate.

“While the overall foreclosure inventory rate for the first quarter was considerably lower than the peak of 4.64 percent at the worst of the crisis, it was still above the average of 1.5 percent for the time period between 1979 and the first quarter of 2016. The good news is that foreclosure inventory rates continued to decline in both judicial and non-judicial states this quarter. However, about two-thirds of the twenty states with foreclosure inventory rates above the national average were judicial states.”