Here’s some sobering news: the rate of foreclosure starts and the percent of loans in foreclosure are at the highest levels ever, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. The total delinquency rate, which measures how many people are behind in loan payments, is at its highest point in the MBA survey since 1985.

Almost 6 percent of homeowners were behind on mortgage payments during the fourth quarter of 2007. This does not include homes in the process of foreclosure. More than 2 percent of loans were heading into foreclosure during the fourth quarter of 2007.

Foreclosure has devastating consequences for families. Their credit scores get ruined and so it becomes more difficult to rent an apartment. Some employers now check credit scores during the hiring process so it may be more difficult to find a job.

If you’re having trouble making your mortgage payments I urge you to get some help before it’s too late. Call the HOPE hotline 888-995-HOPE. While you may feel uncomfortable or embarrassed better to do that than have no place to live.

Mar. 7, 2008