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Number of Delinquent Mortgages Could Double Next Year

[Dec 5, 2008.]


TransUnion LLC said it expects the number of delinquent mortgages in the U.S. to double next year, according to the Wall Street Journal. That will be the highest rate of delinquencies in about 16 years.

After analyzing about 27 million customer records, the credit bureau estimated that by the fourth quarter of 2009 about 7.17% of people with mortgages will be 60 or more days late on their payments. By the end of this year about 4.67% of homeowners are expected to be delinquent on their mortgages.

A lot of the reason for the expected increase is due to the fact that more adjustable rate mortgages are expected to reset next year. "There are a lot more loans that will be resetting throughout 2009 through 2011," Ezra Becker, principal consultant in TransUnion's financial-services group, told the Journal. "There may be an ongoing flow of consumers who may now be able to pay their mortgage but may not be able to a year from now."

It seems like the mortgage mess is far from over and it isn't being helped by the fact that the unemployment rate is at its highest rate in 15 years. Some lenders have agreed to modify the terms of mortgages for delinquent homeowners, and have even postponed foreclosures and evictions during the holiday season.

But with so many more people being expected to fall into hard times with their mortgages next year, it's hard to know if current measures being taken to help homeowners are going to be extended until that time. The Treasury Department is considering a plan to lower the rate of 30-year fixed mortgages to a low as 4.5%, but that measure is aimed at new mortgage applications, not refinances.

In the meantime, if you're already a couple months delinquent on payments you may qualify for help from your lender so it's worth calling them to find out.








About Author:

Francine L. Huff is a freelance journalist and the author of The 25-Day Money Makeover for Women. She has appeared on a variety of TV and radio shows.

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