20% of homes underwater
Real estate website Zillow.com says one of every five U.S. home owners owed more on their mortgage than their home was worth in the fourth quarter. The percentage of American single-family homes with mortgages in negative equity rose to 21.4% in the fourth quarter from 21% in the third quarter, according to the Zillow Real Estate Market Reports. U.S. home values declined again in the fourth quarter, as the Zillow Home Value Index fell 5% year-over-year and down 0.5% quarter-over-quarter, to $186,200. It was the 12th consecutive quarter of year-over-year declines, the reports showed. “The prevalence of markets in or near a double-dip situation shows that we are not yet at the bottom, in terms of home values,” Stan Humphries, Zillow chief economist, said in an interview.