NE TN home equity status points to a healthy housing market, but…

Despite the pandemic and a lackluster labor market, the number of equity-rich property owners in the Tri-Cities increased from last year. So did the number of seriously underwater mortgaged properties, according to ATTOM Data Solution’s Home Equity & Underwater report.

And this is one of those times when the local market conditions closely resemble the U.S. totals. “Homeowner equity in the third quarter added another pebble to the pile of markers showing that the U.S. housing market continues to defy the broad downturn in the economy this year. Home prices keep rising, boosting the balance sheets of homeowners throughout most of the country,” said Todd Teta, chief product officer with ATTOM Data Solutions.

During Q3 this year, there were 98,855 mortgaged properties in the eight local counties included in the analysis. That’s an increase of 15,246 from Q3 last year. It also accounts for 37% of the total number of local housing units.

Of those mortgaged properties, 10,458 were seriously underwater, up from 9,926 last year. The equity rich total was 23,753, up from 20,044 last year.

Looking at the market shares helps put some context to the numbers.

Equity rich properties accounted for 24% of mortgaged properties this year, up from 22.4% last year. Seriously underwater properties had a 10.6% market share compared to 11.1% last year.

So, the big-picture bottom line is the market share of equity rich properties increased while those in trouble declined. That’s a better picture of the local housing market’s year-over-year equity health.

Behind the number of mortgaged properties and equity decline is a large number of trade-up and step-down property owners and a fierce increase in refinance loan originations plus an on-going boom market for upgrades and home renovations.

The local equity rich market share has also trailed both the state and national trend. The current state equity rich share is 25.3%. The U.S. share is 28.3%. Year before last local equity rich share was higher than both the state and U.S. share.

And the local share of seriously underwater properties is higher than the state and nation share.  The local number is 10.6% compared to the state’s 7.9% and the U.S. 6% market share.

Johnson Co. has the dubious distinction of having both the highest share of equity-rich properties and those seriously underwater in the eight-county region.

The largest number increase of seriously underwater properties was in Bluff City’s 37618 zip code. The zip code with the largest decrease in underwater properties is Johnson City’s 37601.

The zip-code level drill down also shows the largest year-over-year increase in equity rich properties was also in Bluff City, with Abingdon a close second. None of the counties in the report had a decline in the number of equity-rich properties when compared to last year’s Q3 total.

Here how the equity-rich picture looks for the eight local counties:

Carter – 23.3%

Greene- 23.6%

Hawkins – 23%

Johnson – 28%

Sullivan – 27.1%

Unicoi – 20.8%

Washington TN – 22%

Washington VA – 23%

Here’s how the share of mortgaged properties that were seriously underwater in Q3:

Carter – 12.4%

Greene – 13.8%

Hawkins – 13.4%

Johnson – 21.2%

Sullivan – 7.6%

Unicoi – 14.2%

Washington TN – 9%

Washington VA 11.2%

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Categories: REAL ESTATE