The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that nearly 1 in 6 homeowners is "underwater"-- they owe more on their mortgages than their homes are worth. How does it feel to be underwater in your own house? Well, you don't feel like shoppping at the mall.
About 75.5 million U.S. householders own their homes. About 12 million householders, or 16%, owe more to their mortgagee than their homes are worth, according to Moody's Economy.com. Among those who financed their homes in the past five years, 29% are under water. (In 2006 about 4% were under water. Last year the rate rose to 6%.) Moody's Chief Economist, Mark Zandi, noted: "it is very possible that there will ultimately be more homeowners under water in this period than any time in our history."
The water is not equally deep everywhere. The WSJ online hosts a cool interactive map showing regions in the US that are knee deep, swampy, and bone dry.