The number of 'underwater' homes in the Sacramento region dropped sharply at the end of last year compared with prior months, a real estate information service reported this morning.
In the fourth quarter of 2012, the number of homes in negative equity - meaning borrowers owed more than their homes were worth - dropped by nearly five percentage points compared with the third quarter of 2012, CoreLogic said in a news release.
In the four-county Sacramento region, 31.7 percent, or 152,346, of all residential properties with a mortgage were in negative equity in the fourth quarter of 2012 compared to 36.2 percent, or 174,912 properties, in the third quarter of last year, the Irvine-based data service said.
That meant more than 22,500 homeowners in the four-county Sacramento region popped above water in the space of a few months and could sell their homes without taking a loss.
As prices rise, CoreLogic said thousands of more homeowners across the region could soon have positive equity in their homes.
An additional 4.7 percent, or 22,427 residential properties, were in "near negative equity" in the fourth quarter of 2012 compared to 5.2 percent, or 25,187, in the third quarter of 2012, the firm said.
Call The Bee's Hudson Sangree, (916) 321-1191.