Nearly 9% of all Federal Housing Administration (FHA)-insured single-family loans are 90-days or more past due, according to the agency's latest monthly activity report.
The November report shows that FHA has a 8.94% default rate, up from 6.53% in November 2008.
The insurer is trying to keep its capital reserves in the black and there's renewed speculation in the industry that it's only a matter of time before the Department of Housing and Urban Development will be forced to ask Congress for a bailout of the fund.
To date, FHA officials have said they can avoid a bailout. Later this month, agency officials are expected to unveil several moves to tighten underwriting and possibly increase mortgage insurance premiums.
Meanwhile, FHA lenders originated $26.6 billion in single-family loans in November, down 11% from the previous month, according to the activity report.
Purchase mortgage transactions totaled $15.8 billion and comprised 60% of FHA originations.