Nationwide data compiled by Zillow identified the worst 1 percent of ZIP codes for mortgage debt exceeding home value. Georgia has nearly a quarter of the ZIP codes. Michigan is second. Many of the Georgia ZIP codes make a crescent around Atlanta's southern flank.
Just over 18 thousand homeowners in Georgia will start seeing checks from their mortgage servicer starting Friday. The payments are part of a settlement between the federal government and 13 financial institutions which admitted taking shortcuts in the foreclosure process.
Georgia has distributed only a fraction of federal money available to help struggling homeowners pay their mortgages and avoid foreclosure. That’s because few people know there’s money available two years into the program.
Three Georgia counties are suing a British bank, claiming that predatory lending harmed property owners as the housing market collapsed. Cobb, DeKalb and Fulton Counties filed the lawsuit Thursday against London-based HSBC in U.S. District Court in Atlanta.
A court ruling in Georgia could force those foreclosing on homes to disclose who actually owns the loan. The ruling last month said that the name of the owner of a mortgage must appear in foreclosure filings and notices sent to delinquent borrowers.
Research firm CoreLogic reported this week that Georgia home prices fell another 5.6 percent in April compared to a year ago. Some analysts say new Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac rules for short sales could help stabilize Georgia’s housing market, where prices have fallen 36 percent in the last six years.