Nearly four million homes last year returned to a position of positive equity, CoreLogic reported Thursday, bringing the number of mortgaged properties with equity up to 42.7 million. The rise in equity left about 6.5 million homes still upside-down on their mortgages, reflecting a negative equity rate of 13.3%.
As might be expected given their declines during the crash, Nevada, Florida, and Arizona topped the list of states with high underwater rates as of December 31, clocking in at 30.4%, 28.1%, and 21.5%, respectively. Following that were Ohio and Illinois, both with rates near 19%. Together, the five states accounted for just under 37% of negative equity in the fourth quarter.
In a survey of 1500 consumers who purchased a home in the last decade, TD Bank found 69% would describe their experience with their lender as either very good or excellent, up from 66 percent in a survey last year. Consumers ranked lender accessibility and responsiveness as the most positive aspects of their experience; however, relatively few respondents were satisfied with their lender's efforts to explain options or help them understand the process. Michael Copely, executive vice president of retail lending at TD Bank, said the survey results illustrate there is still a need to provide consumers with more information and clarity in the home financing process.