27 Million Believe Home is Underwater

April 12, 2010 No Comments »

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Despite what looks like a potential housing recovery, albeit a fragile one, 27 million believe they owe more on their mortgages than what their homes are currently worth, according to a poll from Harris Interactive.

Of the survey respondents who have a mortgage, 24 percent said they believe their home is worth-less than what is owed on the associated mortgage(s), with about half saying “a lot less.”

And 26 percent of those homeowners are having a “great deal of difficulty” paying off the mortgage, which could mean strategic default if they’re unable to snag a loan modification.

That would add to the shadow inventory and weigh down home prices and a possible turnaround, and let’s not forget homeowner sentiment is likely overly positive.

In reality, many more are probably upside down on their mortgages or just breaking even, and with many not promised positive equity until 2015, we may see more opting to walk, especially in the hardest hit areas.

Back in February, First American CoreLogic said a staggering 70 percent of Nevada mortgage properties were underwater, with similarly elevated numbers in Arizona (51%), Florida (48%), Michigan (39%), and California (35%).

The Harris survey is based on responses from 2,320 adults between March 1 and March 8, 2010.

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