Negative equity

One in four mortgages shouldn’t be confused with one in four houses, but it’s still an awful lot of homes underwater:

CoreLogic reports that 10.8 million, or 22.5 percent, of all residential properties with mortgages were in negative equity at the end of the third quarter of 2010, down from 11.0 million and 23 percent in the second quarter. This is due primarily to foreclosures of severely negative equity properties rather than an increase in home values.

During this year the number of borrowers in negative equity has declined by over 500,000 borrowers. An additional 2.4 million borrowers had less than five percent equity in the third quarter. Together, negative equity and near-negative equity mortgages accounted for 27.5 percent of all residential properties with a mortgage nationwide.

This isn’t over. This isn’t even CLOSE to being over, no matter what the market enthusiasts would have you believe. They’re like starving sharks desperately shouting about how warm and wonderful the water is, hoping you’ll ignoring the billowing clouds of blood underneath them.