Loans Going Bad Faster Than the Fixes


The good news is the pace of loan deterioration is slowing.

The bad news is we are still seeing record high delinquencies, and new delinquencies are outpacing loss mitigation efforts.

Lender Processing Services put out its Mortgage Monitor report today, and the numbers are really staggering.

Loans delinquent/in foreclosure process: 7.5 million
REO/Post-sale foreclosure: 1 million
Loans that were current 1/1/09 and 60+ days delinquent 1/1/10: 2.5 million

That last one is interesting, because it shows how much faster loans are going bad than are being modified.

Despite extraordinary loss mitigation efforts that have resulted in the execution of approximately two million loan modifications - including the federal government's Home Affordable Modification Program(HAMP) trial periods - the number of new delinquencies since January 1, 2009, still exceeds this number by 25 percent.

The slow and laborious loan modification process is also clogging the pipelines more so than ever before, causing the pool of problem loans to "grow and stagnate," according to LPS.

More than 31 percent of loans that have been delinquent for six months are not yet in foreclosure, while 22.8 percent of loans delinquent for 12 months have not been moved to foreclosure status (up from 9.0 percent in 2008).

Tomorrow on CNBC we're going to devote a full day to the current state of the housing market, from what has failed to what is promising on the horizon. We'll look at investor plays, which states are heating up, government programs that are going away and new ones coming in. I'm also going to take viewers back in time to find a surprising new end to an old story.

The numbers I just reported above show housing still faces severe headwinds, but hey, it's Spring.

Time to take a fresh look.

I hope you'll tune in.

Questions? Comments?