STATE OF COLORADO
DEPARTMENT OF LOCAL AFFAIRS
DIVISION OF HOUSING
1313 Sherman Street, Suite 518
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Ryan McMaken, Colorado Division of Housing (303) 866-4651
Completed foreclosures down 14 percent since 2007
Completed foreclosures are set to end the year down from 2007. There were 14 percent fewer completed foreclosures during the period ending September 30th, 2008, than during the same period last year. According to a report released today by the Colorado Department of Local Affairs – Division of Housing, there were 9 percent fewer completed foreclosures during the third quarter this year than during the third quarter of 2007. However, completed foreclosures jumped 66 percent from the second quarter to the third quarter.
There were 6,454 new completed foreclosures during the third quarter of 2008, bringing the total for the first three quarters of the year to 16,246. There were 19,025 completed foreclosures during the same period last year. There were 25,320 completed foreclosures during the full year of 2007 which was a 40 percent increase over 2006. The Division’s report predicts a decrease of 13 percent for foreclosures during 2008.
“2006 and 2007 saw big increases in foreclosure filings of 30 and 40 percent, so a 14 percent decrease so far this year makes us cautiously optimistic about the future,” said Kathi Williams, Director of the Colorado Division of Housing. “There are still many reasons for concern, but this is good news.”
While the report expects the statewide total for foreclosures to be down this year, the report shows some counties did experience more foreclosures when compared against last year. In year-over-year comparisons between the third quarters of 2007 and 2008, Boulder, Broomfield, Douglas, El Paso, Jefferson, and Larimer Counties all reported increases. El Paso topped the list with a 26 percent increase in foreclosures over the third quarter of last year. Denver County reported the largest decrease, with a decline of 26 percent compared to the third quarter of last year. Adams County reported a 19 percent drop, and Weld County reported a 20 percent drop.
In recent years, Weld, Denver, and Adams Counties have experienced some of the highest rates of foreclosure activity and growth rates.
Observers note that there may be several reasons for the drop in the rate of growth in foreclosure filings. The Colorado Foreclosure Hotline (1-877-601-HOPE) has been in place for two years now, and according to Williams, almost 4,000 households during 2008 have been able to avoid foreclosure through the hotline and its member agencies.
“If those 4,000 households had foreclosed, we’d be looking at an increase instead of a decrease in foreclosures,” said Williams.
According to the report, factors other than foreclosure prevention and loss mitigation have also had a role in driving down foreclosure totals. Changes in Colorado law that took effect on January 1st created a transitional period during March and April during which very few foreclosure sales at auction could occur. This drove down totals in the first and second quarter foreclosure totals that have affected the annual statistics and created an impression that many fewer borrowers were defaulting on their loans that was the case. A new law that took effect in August also affected foreclosure filing statistics in similar ways.
Even as growth rates moderate in many areas, high foreclosure rates persist. The highest rate was found in Adams County where there was 1 foreclosure for every 58 households. In Denver County there was 1 filing for every 73 households, and 1 for every 74 households in Weld County. There was one foreclosure for every 102 households in Pueblo County.
The latest data reinforces past claims that high foreclosure rates are somewhat restricted to the Front Range and eastern Colorado. Counties in western Colorado experienced much lower foreclosure rates. Mesa County reported 1 foreclosure filing for every 756 households, and La Plata County reported 1 for every 992 households. Garfield County reported 1 for every 5,079 households.
The Colorado Division of Housing collects foreclosure data from public trustees on a quarterly basis. The report, and past foreclosure reports, can be accessed online at the Colorado Division of Housing Web Site at http://dola.colorado.gov/cdh/.
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Ryan W. McMaken
Community Relations Director
Colorado Department of Local Affairs
Colorado Division of Housing
1313 Sherman Street #518
Denver, Colorado 80203