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Strategic mortgage default not the panacea it seems

REThink Real Estate

Q: I'm underwater on my present home, and I'm seriously considering walking away. My credit rating is terrible. I have a guaranteed annuity income of approximately $2,000 per month, and I'm self-employed with an income of approximately $15,000 per month gross. I have approximately $100,000 in my cash accounts. What is my best-case scenario as far as purchasing a home in the future, or is it unlikely that I will be able to purchase a home again? I'm not sure I want to put everything into a home at this stage of my life, as I'm almost retired. A: Though the news reports during most of this year have trumpeted the recovery of the real estate market and home values in most places, you are definitely not isolated in your plight. The fact is that millions of American homeowners are still underwater, meaning that they owe more on their homes than the properties are currently worth, though hundreds of thousands get their heads above water every quarter home values continue to ris...