The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of the Treasury have released the May edition of the Obama Administration’s Housing Scorecard—a—comprehensive report on the nation’s housing market. Data continue to show important progress across many key indicators—as the annual home price increase is the highest since the housing bubble burst in mid-2006 and purchases of new and existing homes remain strong—although officials caution that a full housing recovery will take more time. The Housing Scorecard is available online at www.hud.gov/scorecard.
“As the May housing scorecard indicates, the Obama Administration’s policies and actions over the last four years to speed housing recovery are continuing to show important signs of progress,” says HUD Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic Affairs Kurt Usowski. “In the first quarter of 2013, homeowners’ equity grew by more than $815 billion, reaching its highest level since the first quarter of 2008. Despite the positive news, we have important work ahead since there are so many families and individuals still ‘underwater’ with mortgage balances higher than their home’s value.”
Included in this month’s Making Home Affordable Program Report are detailed assessments for the largest mortgage servicers participating in the program evaluating their performance for the first quarter of 2013. These Servicer Assessments—first issued in June 2011 and published quarterly—show that servicers continue to focus attention on areas identified in previous program reviews, resulting in improved program implementation and better outcomes for homeowners. Last week, the Administration announced an extension of the Making Home Affordable Program—which includes the Home Affordable Modification Program or HAMP—through December 31, 2015. The Making Home Affordable Program is a critical part of the Administration’s efforts to fuel the housing recovery and help homeowners avoid foreclosure.
“We have kept the pressure on the mortgage industry to step up its efforts, which has helped millions of families access relief in a historic housing crisis,” says Treasury Assistant Secretary for Financial Stability Tim Massad. “Making Home Affordable provides standards and accountability for the mortgage industry that will now help additional homeowners avoid foreclosure through 2015.”