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03/19/2013

Fort Worth-Arlington mortgage holders underwater remained unchanged in fourth quarter 2012

Slightly more than 8 percent, or 30,961, of homeowners in Fort Worth-Arlington with a mortgage were in negative equity as of the fourth quarter of 2012, which is flat when compared to the third quarter 2012, said CoreLogic.

An additional 5.4 percent, or 20,388 residential properties, were in near negative equity for the fourth quarter of 2012, up slightly from the third quarter.

Negative equity is often referred to as being underwater or upside down and means borrowers owe more on their mortgages than their homes are worth.

Nationwide, about 200,000 more residential properties returned positive equity during the fourth quarter of 2012, bringing the number of properties that moved from negative to positive equity in 2012 to 1.7 million and the number of mortgaged residential properties with equity to 38.1 million, CoreLogic said.

About 10.4 million, or 21.5 percent of all residential properties with a mortgage, were still in negative equity at the end of the fourth quarter of 2012, down from 10.6 million, or 22 percent, at the end of the third quarter of 2012.

"The scourge of negative equity continues to recede across the country," said Anand Nallathambi, CoreLogic’s CEO. "There is certainly more to do but with fewer borrowers underwater, the fundamentals underpinning the housing market will continue to strengthen. The trend toward more homeowners moving back into positive equity territory should continue in 2013."

_ Sandra Baker

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