Credit Crunch

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Negative equity is a term used to refer to when the value of an asset used to secure a loan is less than the outstanding balance on the loan. In short, when someone buys a house on a loan and the house price falls drastically after the purchase (as result of property price crash/subprime crisis), the buyer is left with a massive mortage he has to pay off, and a low house valuation by the bank. He permanently loses the difference between the two prices, and this often leads to bankruptcy and house repossession.

If you are bankrupt you can never own a house again.