Bad news on the foreclosure front

October 16, 2009 4:29:56 AM PDT
There's more bad news on the foreclosure front. Texas foreclosures were up 17 percent in September and a whopping 43 percent from the same time last year. Just like around the nation and around Texas, Harris County saw a jump in foreclosures. The August figures show a slight increase, but also show more homeowners are falling behind on their mortgages.

The foreclosure problem is far from over. Just ask Michael Stojanik, who lives down the street from a foreclosed home in north Spring.

"What has happened is that people have lost their jobs," he said. "People are unemployed. They sit here and can't get jobs."

Stojanik lives in an area that is seeing the biggest increase in foreclosed homes in Harris County. A map by the realty tracking company First American Core Logic shows the places that have seen a nearly a three percent spike in foreclosures.

One foreclosed property in north Spring is attracting buyers. The house is one of several that Kim Brink is touring today.

"My son lives in Kingwood, so I am thinking that's close to my son and maybe I would get into this or another house that is cheaper," said Brink.

It turns out realtor Myrick Thibodeaux has a lot of homes in the neighborhood to show potential buyers.

"There were a lot of first-time home buyers here and people were put in houses that they could not really afford and probably should not have been put in them to begin with and I think that's why it is higher," he said.

The home he is showing Brink is selling for $55,000, a value for Brink, but a troubling number for Stojanik.

"If I wanted to sell this house for what it is worth, I could not get it," he said. "The house down there selling for $55 thousand," he said. "This house at one time was worth 115, so you can't compete against that."

Unfortunately more homeowners could see the same thing happen. Nearly five percent of homeowners in our area are at least 90 days delinquent on their mortgages.

Nationwide, the foreclosure numbers are growing as well. Foreclosures are up five percent from summer to fall. That's nearly one million homes going into foreclosure in just the last three months.

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