Despite the fact that home affordability remains high, housing data released by the Obama Administration shows new and existing home sales remain low at 27,400 and 440,00 units respectively during December.
Any sort of recovery in the housing market remains fragile and the Administration said it remains committed to its efforts to prevent avoidable foreclosures and stabilize the housing market.
“We know that many responsible homeowners are still fighting to make ends meet,” said HUD Assistant Secretary Raphael Bostic. “That’s why we’re committed to continuing to provide help to homeowners by implementing the broad range of programs the Obama Administration has put in place.”
As lenders review internal procedures related to foreclosure processing, many foreclosure actions have been delayed leading to a lower level of foreclosure activity in December than in prior months. The decline is likely to be temporary as lenders eventually revise and resubmit foreclosure paperwork in the coming months.
December data for the Making Home Affordable Program (MHA) shows that after 12 months, nearly 85 percent of homeowners remain in a permanent modification. Homeowners in HAMP permanent modifications have already reduced their mortgage obligation by more than $4.5 billion to date.
More than 4.1 million modification arrangements were started between April 2009 and the end of December 2010 – more than double the number of foreclosure completions during that time. These actions included more than 1.4 million HAMP trial modification starts, more than 650,000 FHA loss mitigation and early delinquency interventions, and nearly 2 million proprietary modifications under HOPE Now.
The aggregate amount of homeowners’ equity in household real estate at the end of the quarter was down, but remains higher than first quarter of 2009.
To view a copy of the scorecard, see here.