According to an article in the Dallas Morning News, over 21,000 Dallas-Fort Worth area homes were lost to foreclosure in 2008. Foreclosures even hit many high-priced properties.
The article said:
The average debt on homes foreclosed on here last year was just over $138,000, according to data from Foreclosure Listing Service. But lenders also took almost 100 homes with $1 million or more in debt. “If you drive through these neighborhoods where there are $800,000 to $1.5 million homes, you see a lot of for-sale signs,” Roddy said. “We are seeing a lot of properties in these price ranges in foreclosure.”
Many homeowners facing foreclosure are from the middle-class and even upper-middle class who have been effected by job losses or major reductions in income. Many of these homeowners facing foreclosure are also losing some much value in their homes that they end up owing more on their mortgage than the house is worth.
They try to sell house; but with a declining real estate market, tight credit market and rising job losses there are fewer buyers especially for the higher-priced homes. As a result of the inability to sell their homes, many homeowners in these high-priced areas are succumbing to foreclosure.
Many analysts hope that the government foreclosure program will decrease the amount of foreclosures in the Dallas-Fort Worth area; but some are doubtful.
A best case for the next 12 months is that, due to the government programs, we see as much as a 5 percent to 8 percent decline in foreclosure postings,” Roddy said. But it’s too early to gauge the impact of the deepening North Texas recession. “We could get hit with another negative – job losses – which could keep the foreclosure situation from improving,” Roddy said.
What’s more likely to happen is that we may see a false decline in foreclosures because of mortgage backed modifications; but if the past numbers are any indicator of the future–those modifications will eventually lead to foreclosure. Any mortgage modifications that are not made affordable in the long-term will eventually led those homeowners into foreclosure.