In 2005 many home owners tapped the equity of their homes through home equity lines of credit (HELOC) and following a 10-year grace period, the time has come to pay up. MarketWatch staffer Andrea Riquier takes a look at the delinquency rates from HELOCs which were up 87% in March compared to a year ago among second-lien HELOCs, this according to data provider Black Knight.
Delinquency rates could remain elevated as 52% of all active lines of credit were taken out between 2005 and 2007. But the forecast for borrowers from 2006 looks a bit brighter:
The silver lining is that more borrowers with 2006 credit lines have prepaid their HELOCs, possibly thanks to ultra-low interest rates in recent years. A similar pattern may continue with the 2007 vintage, Black Knight suggested.
The jump in delinquencies is a reminder of how pervasive the housing bubble was, and how its effects linger in unexpected ways.