Defaulting HELOCs: A Growing Concern

In 2004, millions of home owners tapped into the equity of their homes through home equity lines of credit. Their 10-year grace periods are now done and they’ve had to start paying. And that’s why HELOC delinquencies are now suddenly soaring.

In March, second-lien HELOC delinquencies – those behind a mortgage on a property — climbed 87 percent compared to a year ago, Black Knight Financial Services’ reports.

Delinquencies may continue to climb too. HELOCs taken out in 2005, 2006, and 2007 comprise 52 percent of all active lines of credit. In 2005, there were about 850,000 home equity lines; 1.25 million in 2006 and 2007. The grand financial total from just those three years: $192 billion.

The increases in HELOC delinquencies are the first annual rises since June 2012, Black Knight notes. An 87 percent spike in delinquencies among 2005 HELOCs over the past 12 months have been attributed to most of the recent spike.

Source: Black Knight Financial Services and “A Decade After the Bubble, Home-Equity Line Delinquencies Jump,” MarketWatch (June 6, 2016)

“Copyright NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®. Reprinted with permission”

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