November 16, 2017

CFPB Releases New Tool for Analyzing Mortgage Delinquencies

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has launched a new online tool for tracking mortgage delinquency rates across the U.S.

“Measuring the number of consumers who have fallen behind on their mortgage payments is a telling barometer of the health of mortgage markets locally and nationally,” CFPB Director Richard Cordray said in a press release about the new tool. “This rich information source identifies mortgage delinquency rates down to the county and metro-area level, making it a useful public tool.”

What Data Does the New Tool Include?

The Mortgage Performance Trends tool has interactive charts and graphs with data on delinquency rates for all 50 states plus the District of Columbia. It tracks monthly changes in two categories of delinquency rates.

The first category consists of borrowers who are 30-89 days behind on their mortgage payments, which typically means they’ve missed one or two payments. The second category consists of those who are 90 or more days past due on their mortgage payments.

The History Behind the Tool

The tool is built with data from the National Mortgage Database, which the CFPB and the Federal Housing Finance Agency established in 2012, and includes data on delinquency rates going back to 2008, when the financial crisis was unfolding. Leading up to that crisis, some lenders originated mortgages to consumers without considering their ability to repay the loans, and this lowering of underwriting standards led to skyrocketing rates of mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures.

Required under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act passed into law in 2010, the CFPB established new rules to address the issues that brought about the crisis. These rules require lenders to determine a borrower’s ability to repay a mortgage before making the loan and also require servicers to assist borrowers struggling to repay their mortgages.

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