Widely circulated data from Singapore’s Credit Bureau suggest that there has been a rise in home loan defaults in the past few years. For example, the number of mortgage defaults in 2018 (156) was up 39% from 2017 (112), and was more than double the number from 2015 (65). Similarly, the number of mortgagee listings (home listing by lenders, usually following defaults) have increased more than two fold since 2015. Should consumers be concerned about a downturn in the housing market?

Why Are Mortgage Defaults on the Rise?

There are a number of reasons that mortgage defaults may have increased in recent years. First, as interest rates have gradually risen from a trough, mortgages have become more expensive for borrowers. This type of rise can result in increased monthly loan bills. For example, a S$250,000 home loan with an interest rate of 2% will require a monthly