USA – NOT “A-OK”

By on February 5th, 2016

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Currently Bell & Company assist borrowers across Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland with Negative Equity issues. But we like to keep our ear to the ground with movements worldwide and you may have recently read our blog post highlighting the London Property Market and concerns over a bubble developing.

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Recently, we have been researching the United States of America and the property market, in certain areas, appears to be in a dire state. RealtyTrac’s end of year Property report for 2015 identified that 6.4 million are “underwater” the term used to represent Negative Equity.

Darren Blomquist, Vice President at RealtyTrac, states “we continue to deal with a long tail of seriously underwater properties – it will be a long time before they return to positive equity.”

As with the property decline in Northern Ireland certain areas in the US have seen more decline than others. The figures below show the percentage of properties underwater in the respective areas:

  • Las Vegas 27.7%
  • Lakeland (Florida) 24.4%
  • Cleveland 24.2%
  • Akron (Ohio) 22.5%
  • Orlando 22.2%

RealtyTrac also identify further interesting statistics:

  • 41% of properties in negative equity are non-owner occupied with 59% being owner occupied. Many of these home owners will feel like they are “mortgage prisoners”
  • 57% of underwater properties have be owned for 10 years or less
  • 63% of underwater properties took out mortgages in 2008 or prior – a classic trend seen in troublesome property markets

With the US Federal Reserve recently taking the plunge and increasing interest rates many borrowers in Negative Equity will feel the pinch even more. With this in mind we’d expect mortgage arrears to rise and home repossessions too. It will be interesting to see how US lenders react to mortgage shortfall debt.

As always if you or anyone you know is suffering from a debt burden which is becoming unbearable please contact Bell & Company today on +44 (0) 2895 217 373 to arrange a free initial consultation. We are achieving excellent settlements in both Northern Ireland and Republic Of Ireland in both our Corporate and Resolution Departments. Our Insolvency department continues to deliver the best independent Bankruptcy Advice also and thus we are proud to assist a variety of clients. We look forward to hearing from you.

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