The housing market has made significant strides toward recovery, due in part to the efforts of the Making Home Affordable (MHA) program. The Program Performance Report Through The Fourth Quarter of 2016, some of the last results as all MHA programs ended on December 31, detail the improvements made since 2009 and the assesses the quality of certain servicers. For example, Delinquencies and foreclosures have dropped since its inception, and the oversight of servicers provided by MHA programs has brought some improvement.
Since 2009, delinquencies have dropped from 6.1 million to 2.7 million. Over 3 million homeowners were underwater as of December 31, a drop from 10.2 million in 2009. And as of December 31, foreclosures starts are at 59.7 thousand, a difference of slightly over 76 percent of 2009’s 250.6 thousand.
MHA has helped 2.8 million homeowners during its time, with a focus on five guiding principles:
- Improving accessibility to foreclosure alternative programs for homeowners experiencing hardship
- Providing payment relief that meets the needs of homeowners based on their hardship
- Becoming sustainable through solutions designed to resolve delinquency and improve effectiveness long-term
- Being transparent by ensuring that the processes are clear and understandable by all parties
- Holding itself accountable by ensuring the appropriate level of oversight
The Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), launched in spring 2009, began a total of 2,511,344 trial loan modifications and 1,683,112 permanent modifications. MHA’s Q4 results note that homeowners who remain in HAMP without defaulting are less likely to default. Homeowners with HAMP permanent loan modifications were able to
Many homeowners in delinquency who were not eligible for HAMP assistance found alternative solutions. 58 percent of those not eligible obtained alternative modification or otherwise resolved their delinquency. However, 23 percent of these were referred to foreclosure.
In addition to offering programs such as HAMP, MHA has compiled data on servicers so that they may better address the needs of homeowners. The MHA Servicer Assessment results for Q4 2016 show which major servicers require improvement, and whether the needed improvement is slight, or substantial. Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Ocwen, Select Portfolio Servicing, and Wells Fargo were reported by MHA as only requiring minor improvement, and CitiMortgage is reported as requiring moderate improvement. However, MHA reports the need for substantial improvement at Nationstar Mortgage. MHA’s results found a 4 percent rate of income calculation errors within Nationstar mortgage, bringing the servicer’s score down.
The Hardest Hit Fund dealt with state-by-state problems in the housing crisis, rather than the nationwide programs from MHA. HHF programs interact with MHA programs and have assisted more than 292,000 homeowners as of December 31. HHF programs did not end on December 31 but have been extended through 2020.