Almost Half of Florida Homeowners Are Under Water in Their Mortgages
Brandon, FL (Law Firm Newswire) December 30, 2011 - PolitiFact Florida recently confirmed that almost half of homeowners in the Sunshine State owe more on their mortgage than their houses are worth.
The number – 46 percent – came from an October speech at the Democratic Party’s 2011 convention in Orlando. PolitiFact checked out the outlandish-sounding claim and found that, indeed 45.1 percent of Florida homeowners are “underwater” or owe more than they could sell their home for in today’s market.
PolitiFact did its research through CoreLogic Inc. and Zillow.com. Those two companies get their real estate data from county records. All of these numbers may scare Florida homeowners on the brink of filing for bankruptcy.
“Sometimes bankruptcy is the smartest thing you can do,” said Brandon bankruptcy attorney Reginald Osenton. “There are so many Floridians who are underwater right now for whom bankruptcy could be a viable alternative. While being upside down on your home by itself is not a reason to file bankruptcy, it is a factor to consider.”
Florida’s 45.1 percent puts the state behind only Nevada at 60 percent and Arizona at 49 percent as the worst in the country. The national average is at about 25 percent, according to PolitiFact.
The highest rates in Florida are in Jacksonville, 59.8 percent, and Port St. Lucie, 57.8 percent. The lowest rates in the state are in Panama City, 37.4 percent, and Gainesville at 39.8 percent, according to Zillow. There were 1.97 million homes in Florida “underwater” this past summer, according to CoreLogic.
“If you are underwater with your mortgage, you are certainly not alone in Florida,” Osenton said. “It is in your best interest to begin to seek answers that could put you in a better situation and help you keep your house.”
Osenton Law Office, PA
500 Lithia Pinecrest Road
Brandon, Florida 33511
Call: (813) 654-5777
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