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As South Florida Bankruptcy Attorneys, we see clients every day that are at the end of their ropes, many because of the collapse of the housing market and inflated mortgages based on higher property values.  It’s great to see things are finally looking up for our region, with encouraging results from the recent Zillow report showing South Florida’s home values up 6.4 percent this past quarter compared to the same time last year.  Simultaneously, we are seeing some declines in the foreclosure rates in all three counties of South Florida.  This is very good news indeed.  See article recently in Miami Herald: South Florida No. 2 in the housing rebound  South Florida housing Market

Compared to the rest of the country, South Florida’s housing market took a very dramatic fall, and wondered when we were going to hit “The Bottom.”  Well, according to recent reports, we hit it sometime last spring.  But last quarter, Miami posted the second highest gains in home prices  in the nation compared to same time last year. Phoenix, AZ was number one. Finally, some empty houses in our neighborhoods have been purchased with less dramatic discounts. There were also less foreclosure filings.  CoreLogic data still shows all three of our counties continue with higher foreclosure rates than the rest of the nation, but at least it is now trending in the right direction, with small percentage declines by county.  Additional data shows mortgage delinquency rates are also shrinking.

So why would two lawyers specializing in bankruptcy law be happy about the good news in home value increases and foreclosure declines?  Because we care about what happens to our clients.     We like being able to say, “We save peoples’ homes for a living.”  There are so many reasons and circumstances that lead people to consider filing bankruptcy.  The downward spiral in home values is just one big factor that pushed many over the brink of financial ruin.   It is most gratifying in our profession to be able to help people get debt relief without losing their homes in the process.      So, yes, we are very happy to see the positive news for our housing market.  Now if only employment and income growth could follow suite, we might see a little break in the action at our office.

By Robert J. Bigge, Jr., Esq.