Professor Frank takes us to housing economics school.

Professor Frank wants us to know that housing is on the slow mend. Here, Dr. Nothaft, chief economist with CoreLogic, discusses America's housing finance landscape in terms of the collective equity and debt.

Likening equity--what value people have paid for in their home--and debt (what they still owe in order to take full, debt-free ownership of the property) the yin and yang of housing finance. House price increases over the past couple of years have been hauling people out of "negative equity" where they owe more dollars than their home is worth. Here's Nothhaft's take-away on 2016:

If home prices rise 5 percent uniformly across the nation in the coming year, we expect to see the number of ‘underwater’ homeowners fall by another 1.1 million in the coming year, as appreciation lifts them up from being underwater. This will allow their equity to grow while their debt pays down.

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