This morning’s forecast of almost 3 million unemployed by 2010 is just the latest indication of how bad the housing crisis is likely to get next year.
Don't look now
A revised and significantly gloomier CBI forecast says the jobless total will rise to a level last seen in the depths of the last recession in 1992 and 1993. A separate forecast by the British Chambers of Commerce on Saturday reached pretty much the same conclusion.
What will that do to repossessions? The total this year is expected to reach 45,000, around the same as in 1990. Over the following three years, another almost 200,000 more families lost their homes.
True, the economy is different now, and the relative position may be better now because there are more people with mortgages, but the worrying thing is that the main argument put forward for why this housing market crash would not see the same surge in repossessions was that unemployment was still low.
And take house prices. Predictions made so far for 2009 reveal that the pundits who were among the most optimistic a year ago are now agreeing with what the pessimists said then.
In November 2007 - after Northern Rock had collapsed remember - the estate agent Savills predicted prices would rise 3 per cebt in 2008. Now it expects an 11 per cent fall in 2009 on top of a 16 per cent fall this year.
A fall of that order - 25-30 per cent from the peak - would leave up to 2 million households in negative equity. And yet more writedowns in the value of the landbanks of housebuilders and housing associations.