Foreclosures are on the rise in the Tri-Cities area, and state-wide, for that matter. According to today’s Tri-City Herald (2/25/07), there were 25% more foreclosures in ’06 than in ’05 across the state. In the Tri-Cities area, there was an almost 19% increase in ’06 (738 trustee sale notices vs. 601) over ’05. However, the title company that supplied these numbers (Benton Franklin Title) did point out that they had only been tracking numbers since the middle of 2004. So, theoretically, 2002, 2003, and 2004 could have been just as bad as 2006, but we don’t know for sure.
In any case, foreclosures sometimes happen when an Adjustable Rate Mortgage (A.R.M.) leaves its fixed-rate period behind and starts, well, adjusting. This can increase the monthly mortgage payment significantly, and people fall behind on their payments.
So, I think I’m going to periodically remind people…if you’ve got an A.R.M., and you’re almost at the end of the fixed-rate period, go get it re-financed into a fixed-rate mortgage if you possibly can.
This has been a public service message brought to you by Cari McGee. 😉