The property and financial analysis firm CoreLogic said Thursday that 31.6 percent of homes with mortgages in Tacoma “were in negative equity” in the first quarter.
“Negative equity” means that borrowers owed more on their mortgages than their homes are worth. Negative equity, CoreLogic explains, can occur because of a decline in the value of a property, an increase in mortgage debt or a combination of both.
The latest figure represents an improvement over the fourth quarter of 2011, when 34.7 percent of mortgaged homes were “underwater” or “upside-down” in Tacoma.
According to the CoreLogic data, 59,215 of all residential mortgaged properties in the city were financially troubled in the first quarter, compared to 64,585 properties the quarter before.
An additional 6.9 percent of properties were “in near-negative equity” in the first quarter, compared to 6.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2011.
Of 1,416,362 mortgaged properties in Washington in the first quarter, more than 290,000, or 20.6 percent, were in negative equity.