In the latest Equifax National Consumer Credit Trends Report, the total balance of write-offs for first mortgages and home-equity lines and loans in the first quarter dropped by 32.6 percent from one year ago. The company said that in this year's opening quarter, the write-offs (excluding loans in bankruptcy) totaled $12.34 billion.
Equifax also reported that severe delinquency rates for first mortgages as a share of total balances dropped to 2.35 percent in the first quarter from 3.27 percent one year ago. The company defines severe delinquencies as loan more than 90 days past due, in bankruptcy or in foreclosure.
The severe delinquency rates for home-equity installment loans dropped to 1.98 percent in this year's first quarter, down from 2.59 percent a year ago. Home-equity revolving lines of credit saw their severe delinquency rate decline to 1.47 percent in the first quarter, down from 1.71 percent.
Amy Crews Cutts, chief economist at Equifax, commented, "We're seeing borrowers become increasingly better at making on-time payments, but we're also seeing a faster rate of amortization due to low interest rates."
Equifax also found that in January 2015, the total credit limit...