According to AP, foreclosures and the delinquency rate (which tracks the number of homeowners behind on their payments but not yet in foreclosure) recently rose to record highs due to the problems with subprime mortgage rates (see article). Welcome to the world of adjustable rate mortgages. Creative financing with adjustable rate mortgages can be tricky. Creative financing can be smart if you have the money to put down but would rather invest it elsewhere, or you are a medical resident and expect a large pay increase in the next year or two. However, many people took adjustable rate mortgages in the past few years because they couldn’t afford the record low mortgage rates being offered. Bad move. If you took creative financing because you couldn’t afford a 30-year fixed rate of say, 5.8%…honey, you couldn’t afford the house. With millions of adjustable rate mortgages scheduled to reset this year, you may be one of many Americans facing foreclosure.
For all of you Boston buyers out there waiting to pounce and swoop up forclosure and pre-forclosure properties at discounted rates, get ready to be disappointed. Just because foreclosure rates are up nationwide doesn’t mean you will find anything in Boston’s prime neighborhoods. In fact, you probably have more chances to find a bidding war than financially distressed sellers in Back Bay, Beacon Hill or Downtown.