Each quarter, RealtyTrac releases its “Home Equity and Underwater Report.”
According to RealtyTrac’s data, “9.1 million U.S. residential properties were seriously underwater.” Mortgages that are “seriously underwater” exceed a property’s value by at least 25 percent. They also account for 17.2 percent of all properties with a mortgage.
That number decreased slightly (0.2 percent) in the second quarter. In the second quarter of 2012, there were 12.8 million properties that were “seriously underwater” — 29 percent of all homes with a mortgage.
The improvement in underwater mortgages may be coming to an end. Recently, home-price appreciation has tailed off and if interest rates rise, all bets are off.