Half of borrowers with prime loans -- or loans made to borrowers with good credit and income -- will likely end up underwater anyway, according to a recent report.
Already more than one-third of prime mortgage loan borrowers are underwater or owe more on their homes than they're worth and with home prices expected to drop by another 10 percent, half of prime borrowers will likely end up underwater, a Fitch Ratings report found. More than 12 percent of borrowers are seriously behind on their payments according to the report, putting them at risk of defaulting.
"Prime mortgage default rates will stay elevated as home prices fall further and unemployment remains high," Fitch Ratings Managing Director Grant Bailey said in a press release.The report indicates that the credit crisis and falling housing prices are taking their toll on homeowners. Compounding those factors, out-of-work homeowners are likely having trouble finding a job. U.S. employers added 103,000 jobs in September, which wasn't enough to push the unemployment rate down from 9.1 percent.
Lawmakers are looking for a way to save hundreds of thousands of Americans from their underwater mortgages and spur a recovery in the housing market. Officials said they hope to unveil a plan in the next few weeks that would allow between 600,000 and 1 million borrowers to refinance their loans and lower interest rates, Reuters reported.
This Italian villa, built in 1924, is available for the first time in 30 years -- and for $9.5 million less than its original ask. The 7.39 acre estate offers coastal and valley panoramas. Features include a pool, guesthouse, tennis court, Japanese garden and three gated entrances.
Exposed beams and glass doors, leading to a porch with coastal views, add luster to this ornate interior.
Location: Corona Del Mar, Calif.
Price: $17.995 million
Sq. Ft.: 7,251
This soft contemporary presides majestically over coastal cliffs. Walls of glass give the panoramas full advantage while three stories of outdoor living go even further to celebrate the residence's stunning location. But as exceptional as this property is, the owner may have asked a little too much at first -- or more than just a little: The home is $10 million cheaper than originally listed.
Location: Kihei, Hawaii
Price: $17 million
Sq. Ft.: 2,337
The fact that $17 million brings you just two bedrooms in the case of this stunner speaks to how expensive Hawaii beachfront really is. And just think: Before the home's $5 million price cut, two bedrooms here cost significantly more.
Location: Paradise Valley, Ariz.
Price: $15.995 million
Sq. Ft.: 17,015
Counting the residence's guesthouses, this property offers 35,000 square feet of covered space. Throw in the 21-car garages, and you've got to wonder: Was the original owner playing sultan? If so, the act's up -- this home has been foreclosed on. Recently, its handler cut the price by $2 million.
The home boasts high-tech security and sound equipment along with a 13-seat mahogany theater, solar-heated pool and solar-electric generator. There are also two swimming pools, including the one pictured at left.