December Housing Scorecard Released


The Departments of Treasury and Housing
and Urban Development have released their joint December 2011 Housing
.  The report is essentially a
summary of housing and housing finance data released by public and private
sources over the previous month and/or quarter. 
Most of the data such as new and existing home sales, permits and
starts, mortgage originations, and various house price evaluations have been
previously covered by MND. 

The scorecard incorporates by reference
the monthly report of the Making Home Affordable Program (MHA) through the end
of November.  This includes information
on the universe of MHA programs including the Home Affordable Modification
Program (HAMP), HOPE Now, and Second Lien Modifications (2MP) designed to help
homeowners with a second lien that is preventing or delaying a first lien
modification.  Metrics are also included
on the Principal Reduction Alternative (PRA) program which requires servicers
of non-GSE loans to evaluate the benefit of principal reduction for mortgages
with a loan-to-value ratio f 115 percent or larger when testing for a HAMP
first-lien modification, the Unemployment Program (UP) which grants full or
partial forbearance for up to a year to homeowners who have lost their jobs, and
the Home Affordable Foreclosures Alternatives Program (HAFA) which allows
borrowers to exit homeownership through a deed-in-lieu or a short sale.  While it is not a program, the report also
covers FHA-HAMP modification activity which has involved 7,350 trial
modifications of FHA loans of which 4,659 are now permanent.

During November the administration initiated
19,059 trial modifications under the HAMP program compared to 21,445 in
October.  This brings the total of trials
begun since the program started in April 2009 to 1.755 million, 909,953 of
which have been converted to permanent modifications; 26,877 of these during
the month of November.  Over 750,000 of
these permanent modifications remained in force at the end of the reporting

The Scorecard lists as the most common
reasons for the cancellation of trial modifications regardless of servicer as insufficient
documentation, payment default, and borrower ineligibility regarding the minimum
31 percent debt-to-income ratio. 

When homeowners are not accepted for trial
modification or those modifications are cancelled, borrowers may be given other
alternatives.  The HAMP program reports
that 39.7 percent of borrowers in cancelled modifications have been offered
alternative programs and 6.1 percent have engaged in a short-sale or
deed-in-lieu of foreclosure.  Ten and
one-half percent of borrowers have brought their loans current and 6.4 percent
have paid them off.  Foreclosures were
started on 16.3 percent of the borrowers and completed on 10.6 percent.  Where the borrower was not accepted for the
program 20.5 percent brought their loans current, 26.5 percent were offered an
alternative modification and foreclosures were started on 15.2 percent and
completed on 7.6 percent.  Deed-in-lieu
and payoff figures were nearly identical for both ineligible and canceled

Under HAFA, servicers have started
38,613 interventions of which 24,365 have been completed, all but 700 of which
were short sales.  Eighty-three hundred
borrowers remain active in the program.

PRA currently has 15,875 active
modifications out of 57,656 started. 
There are 36,454 permanent modifications in place with a median principal
reduction of $66,308.

At the end of November 13,762 unemployed
borrowers were under an UP partial payment forbearance and 2,871 under a plan
with no payment required. 

The 2MP program has accepted 115,750
borrowers as eligible and nearly half, 54,826 have started the second lien
modification process.  Of this number
9,772 second liens have been fully extinguished at an average value of $60,688,
1,100 liens have been disqualified and 44,000 modifications remain active.

Interest in the various foreclosure
prevention activities apparently remains high. 
The HOPE Now Hotline received 65,838 calls in November and 42,189
borrowers were referred for free housing counseling  The Making Home Affordable website received
2.6 million hits during the months and has received 132 million hits over its

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