The number of Americans whose homes are "underwater" continues to be a huge drag on the economy, but the administration is failing to address the issue.
Oct 07, 2011
If you couldn?t pay your debts in the 19th century, you went to jail. Debtors? prison seemed an appropriate punishment for what was then considered moral laxity. The problem was that when debtors were locked up, they couldn?t work off their debts or be productive citizens. That?s why bankruptcy was invented.
We seem to have forgotten this history when it comes to the biggest debt burden still hobbling most Americans?their home mortgage. Home values continue to drop. Since 2005, they?ve plummeted more than 30 percent on average and are expected to drop another 2.5 percent this year. That leaves one in five American homeowners ?underwater??owing more than their home is worth.