Many Vero Beach properties were still underwater at the end of 2014. According to CoreLogic, about 5.4 million homes, or 11 percent of all U.S. residential properties with a mortgage, were still in "negative equity" at the end of the fourth quarter of 2014, meaning that a borrower owes more on a Vero Beach home than it is worth. These Vero Beach properties are referred to as "underwater" or "upside down."
Negative Equity of Vero Beach Properties Expected to Improve
Negative equity continued to be a serious issue for the Vero Beach housing market and the U.S. economy at the end of 2014 with 5.4 million homeowners nationwide still "underwater". The situation is expected to improve over the course of 2015. CoreLogic projects their Home Price Index will rise 5 percent in 2015, which will lift about 1 million homeowners out of negative equity.
More and more mortgage borrowers are gaining equity as home prices continue their steady rise. Nearly 1.2 million U.S. borrowers regained equity in 2014.
Fewer Vero Beach properties are underwater since the peak of the foreclosure and financial crisis, but the national aggregate value of negative equity was $348.8 billion for the fourth quarter of 2014, compared to $341.8 billion for third quarter 2014, an increase of $7 billion.
The share of homeowners that had negative equity increased slightly in the fourth quarter of 2014, reflecting the typical weakness in home values during the final quarter of the year. The CoreLogic HPI dipped 0.7 percent from September to December, and the percent of owners "underwater" increased to 10.8 percent. However, from December-to-December, the CoreLogic index was up 4.8 percent, and the negative equity share fell by 2.6 percentage points.
As we move through calendar year 2015, we will continue to monitor Vero Beach properties and their rise from underwater status. We'll post an update to the problem of Vero Beach properties being underwater later in the year to see how they compare to 2014.
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