This is for all your real estate buddies that think the housing market is coming back soon.
- Approximately 11 percent of all homes in the United States are currently standing empty.
- The rate of home ownership in the United States has dropped like a rock. At this point it has fallen all the way back to 1998 levels.
- According to the S&P/Case-Shiller index, U.S. home prices fell 1.3 percent in October and another 1 percent in November. In fact, November represented the fourth monthly decline in a row for U.S. housing prices. Many economists are now openly using the term “double-dip” to describe what is happening to the housing market.
- The number of homes that were repossessed reached the 1 million mark for the first time ever during 2010.
- According to RealtyTrac, a total of 3 million homes were repossessed by mortgage lenders between January 2007 and August 2010. This represents a huge amount of additional inventory that somehow must be sold.
- 72 percent of the major metropolitan areas in the United States had more foreclosures in 2010 than they did in 2009.
- According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, at least 8 million Americans are at least one month behind on their mortgage payments.
- Deutsche Bank is projecting that 48 percent of all U.S. mortgages could have negative equity by the end of 2011.
- Some formerly great industrial cities are rapidly turning into ghost towns. For example, in Dayton, Ohio today 18.9 percent of all houses are now standing empty. 21.5 percent of all houses in New Orleans, Louisiana are standing vacant.
- According to Zillow, U.S. home prices have already fallen further during this economic downturn (26 percent) than they did during the Great Depression (25.9 percent).
- There are few signs that the employment situation in the United States is going to improve any time soon. 4.2 million Americans have been unemployed for one year or longer at this point. While there has been some nominal improvement in the government unemployment numbers recently, other organizations are reporting that things are getting even worse. According to Gallup, the unemployment rate rose to 9.6% at the end of December. This was a significant increase from 9.3% in mid-December and 8.8% at the end of November.