Monday, May 09, 2011
Housing crash is getting worse
Here in America we have “zombie homeowners.” Millions of them. According to Zillow, a record 16.3 million families are upside-down on their home loans. Sixteen million! And many are a long way upside-down. Their homes may never be worth as much as their mortgage. But they are hemorrhaging cash to pay the nut every month.
Recovery? What recovery? This looks a bit like a depression to me.
What does this mean?
All the misery makes me think of a great French general, Ferdinand Foch. He’s the one who defended Paris at the Battle of the Marne in World War I. During the darkest hour of the fighting, he is supposed to have looked around him and said:
“Hard pressed on my right. My center is yielding. Impossible to maneuver. Situation excellent — I attack!”
In other words, when it comes to distressed housing, I’m finding it hard not to be a contrarian bull.