According to RealtyTrac’s U.S. Home Equity & Underwater Report for the fourth quarter of 2014, over 7 million homeowners (13 percent) still have combined loan amounts exceeding their property’s worth by at least 25 percent. In many cases, their credit cards are maxed out, a missed payment can result in interest rates as high as 28 percent or more, and they can’t obtain a loan modification because their credit scores or the value of their home is too low.

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