The percentage of borrowers in forbearance declined for the 21st consecutive month, according to the latest Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) monthly Loan Monitoring Survey

The total number of mortgage loans in forbearance decreased by 12 basis points in February, down from 1.30% of servicers’ portfolio volume in the prior month to 1.18%. MBA estimates that 590,000 homeowners are currently in forbearance plans.

The share of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans in forbearance decreased 8 basis points to 0.56%. Ginnie Mae loans in forbearance decreased 10 basis points to 1.50%, and the forbearance share for portfolio loans and private-label securities declined 30 basis points to 2.72%.  

“There were many positive results in overall mortgage performance in February. The percentage of borrowers current on their mortgage payments increased to almost 95 percent – 350 basis points higher than one year ago,” said Marina Walsh, CMB, MBA’s vice president of Industry Analysis.

Walsh attributed the decline to viable loss mitigation options, low unemployment, strong wage growth, and rising home equity. 

Other key highlights of the report include:

Loans in forbearance as a share of servicing portfolio volume as of February 28, 2022:

  • Total: 1.18% (previous month: 1.30%)
  • Independent Mortgage Banks (IMBs): 1.44% (previous month: 1.59%)
  • Depositories: 0.97% (previous month: 1.06%)

By stage, 30.1% of total loans in forbearance are in the initial forbearance plan stage, while 57.0% are in a forbearance extension. The remaining 12.9% are forbearance re-entries, including re-entries with extensions.

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