August 23, 2012

Hartford area's negative home-equity snapshot

Contributed photo
Contributed photo

One in five Hartford area homeowners owe a combined $2.8 billion more than their properties are worth, realty-data tracker Zillow.com says.

Greater Hartford owners of 50,156 homes can take some comfort, Zillow.com said Thursday, that their 15.3 million other U.S. neighbors were deeper underwater on their properties in the second quarter.

Nationally, nearly one in three homeowners had negative equity totaling $1.15 trillion in the second quarter, according to Zillow.com. That was down about $42 billion from $1.57 trillion in the first quarter.

Zillow.com claims its home-equity snapshot is the most accurate available because, rather than estimate households' outstanding debt, it looks at actual, current outstanding loan amounts.

In Greater Hartford, of homes that are in negative equity, over half (59 percent) are underwater by 20 percent or less while an additional 6 percent owe more than double on their mortgage than what their home is worth, Zillow.com said.

Nationally, 14.5 percent of underwater homeowners owe more than double their homes' worth.

Hartford County is the most underwater, with 22 percent of homeowners with mortgages in negative equity. Tolland County is next at 20.4 percent, followed by Middlesex at 19.4 percent.

Among Hartford area homeowners with negative equity, most continue to pay their mortgages on time. Just 9.7 percent of underwater mortgagees were 90 days or more behind on their home loans, the data tracker said. Nationally, the underwater delinquency rate was 9.2 percent.

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