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ATLANTA — The good news is homes are more affordable than they have been since the 1970s and more people are paying down debt.

The bad news is the $800 million taken out in home equity at the end of 2008 has now fallen into the negative withdrawal range, said Molly Boesel, director of economics of Fannie Mae’s strategy execution and transformation group. That is the offshoot of people becoming more diligent about paying down debt. And, lower homeownership rates may not continue to stop any real big bounce in the market, she acknowledged.

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