Home builder are ramping up speculative construction to attract last-minute buyers who want to tap a soon-to-expire tax credit [the purchase must be signed by April 30 and closed on by June 30].Houses were being built with reckless abandon a few short years ago, and times were good then. Clearly, we need the relentless construction to resume. Never mind that 2009 was yet another record year for home foreclosure filings:
Almost 3 million homeowners received at least one foreclosure filing during 2009, setting a new record for the number of people falling behind on their mortgage payments.This will lead to the adjustments needed in the larger economy to purge malinvestment and direct resources to the most efficient uses possible. Government intervention into the market always has that effect, after all.
RealtyTrac, the online marketer of foreclosed homes, reported that one in 45 households -- or 2,824,674 properties nationwide -- were in default last year. That's 21% more than in 2008, and more than double 2007's total.
The dramatic, sustained increase occurred despite efforts, such as President Obama's Home Affordable Modification Program, to reduce foreclosure filings.