Thu | Jun 21, 2018

NHT automates debt management, collections rise

Published:Wednesday | May 23, 2018 | 12:00 AM
The National Housing Trust building at Park Avenue, New Kingston.

The National Housing Trust, NHT, says new loan management software resulted in more than a $1-billion boost in collections of mortgage payments, while cutting loan defaults to new lows.

In the fiscal year ending March 2017, mortgage collections climbed to $20.1 billion, or seven per cent more than the $18.75 billion reported in the previous year.

The collections nudged the housing agency just above the targeted collections of $20 billion set for the 2017 fiscal year, by 0.5 per cent.

"The overall improved performance of this portfolio was supported by the implementation of the debt management software," NHT said in its financial report tabled in Parliament earlier this month.

The agency spent US$381,000, or around $48 million, on the software to manage collections on a mortgage loan portfolio that was valued at $162 billion in 2017. The software was acquired from an American company called Fiserv Inc.

NHT told the Financial Gleaner that it implemented the software in early December 2016 as a means of automating the management of the delinquency portfolio.

Since then, the default rate has fallen to "an all-time low of 9.9 per cent," whereas the range is generally between 11 per cent and 15 per cent, the housing agency told the Financial Gleaner.

The NHT portfolio comprised some 108,309 mortgage loan accounts last year. At year ending March 2017, the agency reported a surplus of $24.2 billion, which was 34 per cent higher than the previous year.

avia.collinder@gleanerjm.com