In 24 years as president and chief executive officer of Sacramento’s Safe Credit Union, Henry Wirz said he’s never seen such “widespread credit problems in the Sacramento region.”
It began last September with rising delinquencies on car loans. By December, the late payments spread to real estate loans. Now, increasingly, borrowers have maxed out their credit cards and home equity lines of credit, said Wirz, sitting in his office on Madison Avenue.
What’s to blame? Rising unemployment is one factor, he said. Another is borrowers’ desperate efforts to make the house payment and then deal with their other bills.