Clearing foreclosure backlogs and increasing prices have sharply decreased the percentage of “underwater” home mortgages. While some signals remain mixed and the future behavior of unprecedented numbers of investors paying cash and renting out single-family homes is unknown, the home-price recovery is here. Interest rates have crept up and inventories are low in active markets, according to BusinessWeek, indicating that more people are willing to move and sell a house at a wash compared to three years ago.

Underwater