April 23, 2018

Obama’s Housing Scorecard: Cautious Progress

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Obama’s Housing Scorecard: Cautious Progress

The housing recovery is strengthening across the country, but the Obama administration cautions that the economy is still healing from the recession and the recovery is fragile, according to the administration’s March Housing Scorecard.

The report highlights several of the latest housing indicators, including reports showing that home prices remain stable and foreclosures are continuing to fall. Indeed, foreclosure starts are at their lowest level since the end of 2005, according to RealtyTrac. Repossessions by lenders are down 33 percent from year-ago levels.

"While there is good news in the March Scorecard, it's clear the housing market is still in the recovery phase of the cycle," says Kurt Usowski, HUD deputy assistant secretary for economic affairs. "The good news is that home owners' equity is now over $10 trillion, foreclosure starts are at their lowest levels since 2005, and house prices remain stable, but the recovery is stronger in some markets than in others. Overall, with home sales slowing, too many home owners still underwater, and mortgage delinquency rates remaining high compared to historic norms, we must sustain our efforts to encourage continuing recovery in the housing market and help responsible home owners."  

The scorecard each month highlights the administration’s progress in its housing programs. The Making Home Affordable program has helped more than 1.3 million home owners receive permanent loan modifications through the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) and avoid foreclosure, according to the report. The Federal Housing Administration also has offered more than 2.2 million loss mitigation and early delinquency interventions through February, according to the report. Coupled with additional efforts, the administration notes that more than 8.2 million mortgage modifications and other forms of mortgage assistance arrangements have been completed between April 2009 and February 2014.

Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

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