31% (15.3 million) of U.S. homeowners who have a mortgage underwater
nearly three-quarters have properties that are 40% below their buying cost
When homeowners were asked in the survey why they would not choose to strategically default, 37% cited moral reasons, while 35% indicated it didn’t make sense since they intend to live in that house for an extended period of time.
The most common reason for avoiding strategic default cited by homeowners was that it is a moral issue.
Even though one out of every three homeowners with a mortgage is underwater today, Zillow said 90.8% of these homeowners are current on their mortgage and continue to make payments
The Zillow survey also asked the economists for their opinion on the adoption of government-sponsored mortgage principal forgiveness initiatives for underwater borrowers. The survey found that 72% of respondents opposed any adoption of such programs, while 28% were in favor.
Last year, one out of every 16 Nevada properties had a foreclosure notice, the report said. According to 500 individuals surveyed who personally experienced a foreclosure in the state, just over one quarter (27%) indicated they strategically defaulted this year, 4% more than the 2011 report.