The Department of Treasury and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) have issued the Housing Scorecard for June 2014. The Scorecard is a comprehensive report that looks at all areas of the housing industry. This report was first created by the Obama administration in 2009 after the housing market suffered the worst crash since the Great Depression.
The Scorecard for June shows that there is continued improvement in all areas of the housing market. It also states that there is a continuing trend in increased equity and foreclosure activity continues to decrease in all areas of the United States.
The report further states that actions taken by the Obama administration to help struggling home owners are continuing to provide relief. The administration has stated that the Home Affordable Mortgage Program (HAMP) has provided over 1.3 million mortgage modifications to date. These modifications have saved home owners an estimated $28.2 billion in mortgage payments.
Information released in the report included:
- New home purchases in May increased by 18.6 percent to an annual sales rate of 504,000 units. This is a 16.9 percent increase over sales for the same month in the previous year, and a significant increase in the annual rate registered for April of 2014 at 425,000.
- The increase in new home sales during May represents the largest one month increase in new home sales in 22 years.
- This annual rate for home sales represents the highest rate since May 2008, or right before the housing market crash.
- Previously owned home sales increase in May. This was a welcome increase after two consecutive months of decreasing sales. It is believed that the slow sales of previously owned homes were in direct relation to the lingering harsh winter.
- Annual rate for previously owned homes registered at 4.89 million units. This represents a 4.9 percent increase over the previous month. However, this figure is a five percent decrease over the annual rate for the same month in the previous year.
- New foreclosure starts dropped 10 percent from the previous month in June to 49,420 units. This figure represents a 32 percent decrease from the same month in the previous year.
- Foreclosure rates are now at their lowest level since 2005.
- Completions of foreclosures also decreased in June. Completion rates dropped six percent from May and 27 percent from June 2013.
- Over 8.5 million loan modifications or mortgage assistance transactions have taken place since the housing market crash in 2009. 2.1 million mortgage assistance transactions took place through the Making Home Affordable Program, which includes 1.4 million modifications through the Home Affordable Modification Program.
- The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) has reported 2.1 million mortgage loss interventions through May 2014.
- HOPE Now lenders have reported 4.1 million loan modifications being granted through this program.
The Administration cautions that even though the housing figures are looking very positive that these numbers should be viewed with caution. The Obama administration together with HUD believes that there is still much to be accomplished before they will declare the housing market stable.