The home loan and real estate markets we are currently slogging through are unprecedented in their severity. The last time something similar happened was so long ago that few are still here to remember it. As a result millions of people are unable to make their home loan payments and subsequently will have their credit damaged. Three basic events can lead to that.
In short sale the mortgage lender agrees to let the homeowner sell the property for less than the underlying loan balance. Deed in lieu means that the borrower gives the deed, or keys, to the home loan provider before it starts foreclosure action. And then there is the foreclosure itself. All three will slam the homeowner's credit generally up to seven years. By how much depends largely on how many other accounts are in distress.
These guidelines evolved gradually during "normal" housing market conditions. At times when there weren't millions of borrowers in trouble with their mortgage payments. But today things are different. The real estate scene is uniquely clobbered, bringing along with it a historic price adjustment, too. One that was actually badly needed to better reflect a sustainable value structure.
What FICO, the most widely used credit standard, does is use its computer model to predict future borrower behavior, in other words assess risk. FICO score, say, eight years ago was able to lay out a rather representative picture of a mortgage borrower. But from about 2007 onward a totally new class of a credit applicant was introduced to be rated. An unusually large segment of today's homeowners who in some shape have defaulted, or will default, on their mortgage have had a decent to excellent credit rating up until this meltdown. Keeping that in mind, their current FICO score would not be as accurate a predictor employing the standard model. Once the economy improves and most of them will obviously recover financially and become good credit risks once again, they'd still be carrying for years dings to their credit.
Las Vegas valley - with localities like Mountains Edge, Summerlin, Henderson, Southern Highlands, Anthem, North Las Vegas and Green Valley - has its share of homeowners who fall under this category. Real estate upturn here in Southern Nevada - and throughout the nation - will be undeniably delayed because many home loan applicants just can't get approved due to FICO's slow update policy. But there is hope.
The mortgage industry still has those with the spirit of entrepreneurship. Some scattered portfolio lenders are already underwriting mortgages for borrowers with recent foreclosure on their record. They keep the loans in their own books since Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac won't touch them. And it's foreseeable that more will start doing that as they realize what untapped market it is.