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Re: “East Bay Cities Rank Among Top Zip Codes for Foreclosures

The counts alone are difficult to interpret. Expressing them as ratios to the number of residential addresses in the zipcodes would be a good first step. Using the latest census split between owner-occupied and rental units would be a helpful further refinement. The rankings are laregly meaningless without such adjustments. Further insight could be gained by comparing the rates to levels seen in the years before the past 5-7 years of lending mania. For several years, foreclowure rates have been extremely low by historical standards. That's how a mild market optimism can grow into a mania: too many forget how bad it can get, and borrow or invest recklessly. Since there are always those who are willing to bring borrowers who shouldn't borrow together with investors who shouldn't invest, both end up getting badly burned.

Posted by Frank Meyer on 07/02/2007 at 7:38 AM

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