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Mortgage Debt Hits $15.8T

Mortgage debt hit a record $15.8 trillion in Q3 2019, according to data from LearnBonds.com. According to the data, this is the highest amount since the 2008 economic crisis which stood at $14.7 trillion.

The home mortgage sector rates showed a steady decline in recent years to hit a low of $13.3 trillion in the third quarter of 2013, and from the 2013 Q3, the debt has increased in a steady trajectory to hit the latest figures recorded in 2019. From the data, there was $401 billion in newly originated mortgage debt in 2018 Q4.

“Generally, the mortgage is among the largest component of household debt across the United States,” LearnBonds notes. “However, the mortgage rates have been low since the last quarter of 2018. The Federal Reserve Bank resorted to lowering the rates in the wake of trade uncertainty which affected the global economic growth.”

Additionally, debt-to-income (DTI) ratios are on the decline, loan-to-value (LTV) ratios are on the rise, and average credit scores for conventional conforming home loans ticked up as of Q3 2019, according to data from CoreLogic.

The average DTI for conventional conforming loans was 36% for Q3 2019, down one point from a year earlier. CoreLogic noted that this shift may be a result of a “relaxing of affordability pressures” as mortgage rates eased in 2019.

Mortgage rates declined over the first three quarters of the year and were down 1 percentage point on an annual basis in the third quarter of the year.

CoreLogic noted that “credit-risk attributes of borrowers have shown dramatic variation in the last 20 years,” but that while DTI and LTV ratios have relaxed overall, “there has been no change in credit score standards.”

Also, the high DTI and LTV loans tend to be fully documented “and thus are different than the pre-housing crash high DTI and LTV loans,” many of which were low or no-documentation loans.

Over the past few years, new policies loosening credit standards for the GSEs have helped push average DTI and LTV ratios up for conventional conforming home loans.

About Author: Seth Welborn

Seth Welborn is a Harding University graduate with a degree in English and a minor in writing. He is a contributing writer for MReport. An East Texas Native, he has studied abroad in Athens, Greece and works part-time as a photographer.
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