Maryland mortgage delinquencies
The good news is that 89 percent of Maryland borrowers weren't behind on their mortgages at the end of last year. The bad news? Only 89 percent of Maryland borrowers weren't behind on their mortgages at the end of last year.
That's the smallest share since the Mortgage Bankers Association began keeping track 30 years ago, and it means more than 100,000 borrowers in trouble.
A record percentage of prime and subprime mortgages in the state weren't current -- either behind a bit or to the point that the lenders were trying to foreclose. The prime group is actually larger than the subprime -- 56,000 vs. 46,000 -- but there are a lot more prime borrowers in the state than subprime.
The share of Maryland subprime loans in trouble is staggering. Take a guess. Go ahead, I'll wait.
OK: Almost 40 percent.
Some 6.7 percent of prime mortgages in Maryland are past-due or in the foreclosure process, a much smaller share than subprime but still unusually high. It was 3.7 percent as recently as the beginning of last year.
You can find national delinquency statistics here.
If you'll recall, delinquencies and foreclosures began shooting up as a result of problematic lending standards and falling home values. Lorraine Mirabella reports in today's mortgage delinquency story that the new problem is the one that would normally be to blame for foreclosure:
"Employment is the issue," Jay Brinkmann, MBA's chief economist, said during a conference call. "It's not an issue with changes in payment structure or payment resets. As jobs go away, you first see this show up in" subprime, fixed-rate lending. Then it works its way up to the less-risky prime loans.