Currently Reading

Foreclosures Are Surging But Still at Low Levels

Housing Policy + Finance

Foreclosures Are Surging But Still at Low Levels

Despite the increased level of foreclosure activity in September, we’re still far below historically normal numbers.

October 14, 2021
Foreclosure notice and face mask

As government and private-sector programs for helping homeowners with financial difficulties delay monthly mortgage payments start expiring, foreclosures are rising dramatically. But that increase is coming off of a very low baseline, and foreclosures still are far below pre-pandemic activity. 

New foreclosures, also known as starts, usually number around 40,000 per month. They fell to as low as 3,000 to 4,000 in the first year of the pandemic, when forbearance programs were in full force.

“Despite the increased level of foreclosure activity in September, we’re still far below historically normal numbers,” said Rick Sharga, executive vice president at RealtyTrac, an ATTOM company.

September foreclosure actions were almost 70% lower than they were pre-pandemic. Total foreclosure activity is also still 60% lower than it was a year ago.

“Whether the increase is a prelude to a more serious problem, or just a return to normal levels of foreclosure is one of the bigger debates going on inside the industry right now,” said Sharga.

 Foreclosure numbers should stay relatively low because of aggressive modifications by lenders and also because of high levels of home equity, due to the recent housing boom and consequently high home prices. Prices were up over 18% year over year in August, according to CoreLogic.

“I think the ‘forbearance cliff’ will be minimal,” said David Stevens, former CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association and former FHA commissioner in the Obama administration.

Read More

Related Stories

Housing Policy + Finance

Foreclosures Up But Crisis Repeat Worries, Not So Much

Housing market experts don’t see another foreclosure crisis on the horizon for a number of reasons.

Housing Policy + Finance

Banks Consider Climate Change Risk for Home Loans

Banks are starting to calculate their risk exposure to climate catastrophes, and this process can be called “underwaterwriting” or “blue-lining,”…


Increasing Home Values Lift 1 Million Homes from 'Underwater' Status

Home value increases have taken more than 1 million homes out of an “underwater” status, meaning the loans secured by the property were 25% higher…


More in Category


Create an account

By creating an account, you agree to Pro Builder's terms of service and privacy policy.

Daily Feed Newsletter

Get Pro Builder in your inbox

Each day, Pro Builder's editors assemble the latest breaking industry news, hottest trends, and most relevant research, delivered to your inbox.

Save the stories you care about

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet lorem ipsum dolor sit amet lorem ipsum dolor sit amet.

The bookmark icon allows you to save any story to your account to read it later
Tap it once to save, and tap it again to unsave

It looks like you’re using an ad-blocker!

Pro Builder is an advertisting supported site and we noticed you have ad-blocking enabled in your browser. There are two ways you can keep reading:

Disable your ad-blocker
Disable now
Subscribe to Pro Builder
Already a member? Sign in
Become a Member

Subscribe to Pro Builder for unlimited access

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.