Monday, October 31, 2011

Underwater Mortgages

The ratio of total mortgage debt to property value:
Las Vegas 119%
Orlando 100
Phoenix 97
People have begun to stop outmigration from New York, Massachsetts, and Michigan to these supposed paradises. I guesss they have decided that snow is not so bad after all.

Karl Case estimates that the decline in home prices from 2005 to 2009 caused consumer spending to be $240 billion in 2010 than it would have been. This kind of decrease in the value of a major asset can not be absorbed by individuals or banks. Both need to start over. After all, this is an accounting problem and we could change the banking rules for banks that write off the decline and refinance their mortages.

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