Federal Reserve Bank of Boston: New Community Development Issue Briefs

HUD/FHA-Insured Homeowners and Properties in End-Stage Default and Foreclosure: National Context and Experiences in Massachusetts

The foreclosure crisis is a defining feature of the Great Recession of the 2000s. Foreclosure forces occupants out of their homes and results in additional negative impacts for them and for the neighborhoods and municipalities in which the homes are located. In all, some 7.8 million homes were foreclosed between 2007 and 2016. In 2011, the peak year of the crisis nationally, nearly 1.6 million homes were in the foreclosure inventory.

This series of Community Development Issue Briefs was being finalized just as the coronavirus pandemic hit the U.S., during a period of declining foreclosures for both FHA-insured and conventional loans. This relatively calm stretch provided an opportunity to explore the extent to which a number of HUD/FHA default and foreclosure policies and procedures are serving the public interest and to identify opportunities for improvement.

With significant numbers of people now unable to make their mortgage payments due to COVID-19-related income loss, loan defaults and foreclosures are likely to rise again. The analysis presented in this series may be of value as policymakers craft responses to this latest economic crisis.

Courtesy of Federal Reserve Bank of Boston

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