Although Alan Greenspan feels the US economy is growing (slowly), a recession is not coming(probably), the bottom has been hit (maybe not here), and the stock market is getting better, in fact the overall economy is still slowing - and he's
trying to sell his book. Some areas of Florida are doing better than others. But, the Orlando area is not expected by some authorities to bottom out until the first Quarter of 2009 with a 15% decline in housing values!
The condominium oversupply is resulting in delays and cancellations of new construction. Florida has a reported 2% drop in foreclosure actions since August. Down is good, BUT this is a miniscule adjustment compared to the 158% increase in foreclosures
from Sept 06 to Sept 07. And it may not be a trend – just a glitch!
A University of Florida survey reports continuing distress in the condo and existing housing markets, rising foreclosures, and disruption in the mortgage securities market as evidenced by the recent instability.
Even in the Panhandle area that considers itself stabilized and doing o.k., Florida's largest landowner/developer has had a 75% reduction in the workforce.
Exotic mortgages (they aren't sexy) and sub-prime loans are still seeing monthly payments shooting up precipitously.
SO – Protect yourself, your family, and your home. Tighten up those budgets some more. It's not over, and looks like it may get worse before it gets better! Do not spend if it's not necessary! Nobody is totally out of the woods yet!
Check with your local lender to see if you qualify for the new FHASecure program which was recently created to provide a fixed-rate refinance for homeowners who are 1-6 months in arrears due to a rate reset. The purpose of the program is to keep good borrowers
out of foreclosure. To qualify, you must have been current (less than 30 days late) on all your payments for the six months before the interest rate was increased. Also, you must have equity in your home of at least 3%. This means you won't qualify if you
Think about this now because the market could get worse!
Linda Carpenter, MBA, SRA (FHA Appraiser FLRD789