How Many Homes in the Country Are Still Underwater?

In addition to low housing inventory, the unprecedented amount of monetary easing from the Federal Reserve has acted like a life preserver to the real estate market. However, many Americans still find themselves underwater or anchored to their current homes.

In the third-quarter of 2013, the national negative equity rate declined at its fastest pace on record to 21 percent of all homeowners with a mortgage, according to Zillow’s latest Negative Equity Report. In comparison, 23.8 percent of homeowners with a mortgage were underwater in the previous quarter. The peak was made in the first quarter of 2012 at 31.4 percent.

The national negative equity rate has now declined for six consecutive quarters, and fell below 25 percent earlier this year for the first time since Zillow began using its current methodology in 2011. In fact, around 1.4 million American homeowners were freed from negative equity during the third quarter. While this is a significant improvement, many people are still trapped in their homes.

Across the nation, there are approximately 10.8 million homeowners who still owe more than their homes are currently worth. Zillow also finds that the effective negative equity rate — homeowners with less than 20 percent home equity — is at 39.2 percent. Meanwhile, roughly one in seven homeowners owe more than double what their home is worth.

A homeowner technically reaches positive equity when the market value of the house exceeds the outstanding loan balance by any amount, but the associated costs of listing a house and moving prevents many Americans from selling. Zillow notes that listing a home for sale and buying a new one typically requires equity of 20 percent or more to comfortably meet related expenses.

“Rising home prices and a greater willingness among lenders to engage in short sales have both contributed substantially to the significant decline in negative equity this quarter. We should feel good that we’re moving in the right direction and at a fast clip,” said Zillow Chief Economist Dr. Stan Humphries. “But negative equity will remain a factor for years to come, and must be considered part of the new normal in the housing market. Short sales will remain a persistent feature of the market as many homeowners remain too far underwater for reasonable price appreciation alone to help.”

With the help of centrally-planned interest rates and low inventory levels, home prices have been on the rise. In September, home prices across the nation increased on a year-over-year basis for the 19th consecutive month. According to CoreLogic, a property information and analytics provider, home prices jumped 12 percent in September from a year earlier. In fact, home prices have posted double-digit gains for eight straight months.

Home prices are still 17.4 percent below their bubble peak in April 2006, but every state logged an annual increase in September. West Virginia and Arkansas posted the smallest gains at 0.9 percent and 1.3 percent, respectively. Looking ahead, Zillow predicts the negative equity rate among all homeowners with a mortgage will decline to 18.8 percent by the third quarter of 2014.

How Many Homes in the Country Are Still Underwater?

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Posted by on November 30, 2013 in Real Estate


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Five questions to ask before hiring a real estate agent Want to sell your property quickly?

Five questions to ask before hiring a real estate agent
Want to sell your property quickly?

Looking for your dream house? Are you hoping to get the best deal possible during the complex process of buying or selling a home? With so much money – and often, emotion – at stake, doing it alone is generally not the best way to reach your goals. The secret for getting exactly what you want: Work with a savvy real estate agent. A qualified real estate agent will streamline the process, help you save money and serve as a liaison with your best interests in mind. But how do you find the right real estate agent? Hundreds or even thousands of real estate professionals may work in your area, but finding the best one for your unique situation doesn’t have to be time-consuming. Remember, you’re hiring this individual for his or her expertise and services. You want someone who will work hard for you, but also someone you are comfortable with because you may be spending a lot of time together.

1. How many buyers/sellers have you helped in the last year?

2. Do you have advanced training?

3. What services do you offer?

4. Who else will be working with me?

5. How often will I hear from you?

I have these answers ready for YOU! Call me today! 407-489-0328

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Posted by on June 6, 2013 in Real Estate


Investors Gradually Retreating from Market

Investors Gradually Retreating from Market.

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Posted by on April 4, 2013 in Real Estate


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The Top 10 Real Estate Tax Deductions for Homeowners

The Top 10 Real Estate Tax Deductions for Homeowners.

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Posted by on April 4, 2013 in Real Estate


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Another sign that the house market is bouncing back from a long slump.

Residents line up to snag new home lots.

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Posted by on March 9, 2013 in Real Estate


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Orlando inventory hits five-year low; median price rises 13 percent – Orlando Regional Realtor Association

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Posted by on May 4, 2012 in Real Estate


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Top 10 metros with greatest drop in for-sale inventory | Inman News

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Posted by on April 28, 2012 in Real Estate


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