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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Mortgage morality

About one in four homeowners (25 million) hold mortgages worth more than their homes — and some are choosing to walk away.

Those who do face such financial consequences as damaged credit to the prospect of a lender suing to recover the balance. Yet for many, the question fundamentally is a moral one.

At its heart are biblical concepts of promise-keeping and neighborliness, said James Childs, theologian and ethicist at Trinity Lutheran Seminary, Columbus, Ohio, who noted that one person's default can sink another neighbor's property values.


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October issue

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