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North Las Vegas unpaid mortgage rate among nation’s highest, report says

Updated October 2, 2023 - 3:15 pm

More than 30 percent of North Las Vegas residents who own a home could be considered “house poor,” according to a new study from Chamber of Commerce, an online business resource website.

The municipality ranked No. 11 in the country, with 18 of the top 50 cities falling within California. The study breaks down how much people still owe on outstanding mortgages, and approximately 61 percent of all homeowners nationwide are still in debt. Fontana, California has the highest percentage of people with unpaid mortgages in the country at 82 percent.

Collin Czarnecki, who led research for the study, which used U.S. Census data, said there are a few factors that contributed to North Las Vegas’ high ranking.

“North Las Vegas has experienced significant growth, which has attracted new homeowners to the area,” he said in an email response to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “From 2012 to 2022, North Las Vegas’ population increased by 25 percent, according to the Census Bureau. The high percentage of new homeowners is also evident in the fact that the median homeowner tenure in North Las Vegas is only about six years.”

Czarnecki also noted there is a financial aspect to consider with the municipality. The city has 39,101 residents with unpaid mortgages, making up 76 percent of the population and an average monthly mortgage payment of $1,549.

“Thirty one percent of homeowners in North Las Vegas could be classified as ‘house poor.’ This means they are allocating more than 30 percent of their income toward monthly housing expenses, including mortgage payments and utilities. This financial strain may be causing homeowners in North Las Vegas to take longer to pay off their mortgages, as a significant portion of them are living beyond their means when it comes to monthly housing expenses.”

The city of Las Vegas ranked 56th out of all cities in the country (69 percent still have outstanding mortgages), and Henderson was 63rd and Reno was 88th. The study notes that 28 percent of Henderson homeowners could be classified as “home poor”, and that Henderson has seen a 25 percent population growth since 2012, and approximately 69 percent of its residents have unpaid mortgages.

Contact Patrick Blennerhassett at pblennerhassett@reviewjournal.com.

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