MBA Survey: “Share of Mortgage Loans in Forbearance Decreases to 5.48%”, More Borrowers Seeking Relief

Note: This is as of December 6th.

From the MBA: Share of Mortgage Loans in Forbearance Decreases to 5.48%

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) latest Forbearance and Call Volume Survey revealed that the total number of loans now in forbearance decreased from 5.54% of servicers’ portfolio volume in the prior week to 5.48% as of December 6, 2020. According to MBA’s estimate, 2.7 million homeowners are in forbearance plans.

“The share of loans in forbearance decreased in the first week of December. However, more borrowers sought relief, with new forbearance requests reaching their highest level since the week ending August 2, and servicer call volume hitting its highest level since the week ending April 19,” said Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s Senior Vice President and Chief Economist. “Compared to the last two months, more homeowners exiting forbearance are using a modification – a sign that they have not been able to fully get back on their feet, even if they are working again.”

Added Fratantoni, “The latest economic data is showing a slowdown, particularly an increase in layoffs and long-term unemployment. Coupled with the latest surge in COVID-19 cases, it is not surprising to see more homeowners seeking relief.”

By stage, 18.72% of total loans in forbearance are in the initial forbearance plan stage, while 78.72% are in a forbearance extension. The remaining 2.56% are forbearance re-entries.
emphasis added

MBA Forbearance Survey Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the percent of portfolio in forbearance by investor type over time.  Most of the increase was in late March and early April, and has been trending down for the last few months.

The MBA notes: “Total weekly forbearance requests as a percent of servicing portfolio volume (#) increased relative to the prior week: from 0.08% to 0.12%. … As a percent of servicing portfolio volume (#), calls increased from the previous week from 5.3% to 9.4%.