So let’s say you bought a house in Cranford less than six years ago.

And you have some other expenses and debts you’d like to get rid of, plus a lower payment would be nice.

You talk to a bank. You get an appraisal done. The appraisal amount does not make you happy (nowhere near 2005 happy).

You look at your mortgage statement, you look at your other bills, and to get the money you want, you’ll be needing to get more than 80% out of the appraised value of your home.

Union County Residents: The story stops there.

Why? Because unless you go FHA, you’ll have to get Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). At least until you have only 80% of the appraised value of your home remaining as principal.

And not too many Mortgage Insurers are bullish on Union County. They forecast prices to continue sliding. So. No policies are getting written for Union County.

And with Union County now being #2 in the nation for property tax burden with respect to income, they are probably not wrong.