The people of New Jersey work hard to support their families and achieve the American dream. Home ownership is a crucial part of that dream. Owning a home can provide a family with a sense of financial security, community and responsibility. But through the economic downturn over the past six years, thousands of people have lost their homes to foreclosure.
Even though financial gurus have been assuring us that the worst of the financial crisis is over, foreclosures of family homes don’t seem to be slowing down. According to Realty Trac, more than 1.1 million homes in America are currently in some phase of the foreclosure process, and as we reported in a recent blog post, foreclosures in New Jersey are still on the rise.
A mortgage is considered underwater if the homeowner owes more on the mortgage than the assessed value of the property, also referred to as negative home equity. In both Newark and Elizabeth, New Jersey, more than half of all homes are underwater, with Paterson just behind at 49 percent.