Grand County foreclosure filings up over last year |

Grand County foreclosure filings up over last year

Tonya Bina
Sky-Hi Daily News
Grand County, Colorado

Foreclosure filings in Grand County during the first half of 2009 went up about one-third from 83 last year to 110 this year, according to a report by the Colorado Department of Local Affairs.

And the foreclosure rate this year is on pace to at least match last year. Through Aug. 7, 145 foreclosure notices had been filed in Grand County in 2009 compared with 173 in all of 2008, according to the Grand County Public Trustee’s Office.

Grand County’s increase in foreclosure filings contrasts with statewide statistics that show filings increased 0.3 percent in the first half of 2009, while sales fell 6 percent compared to the same period last year.

Colorado currently ranks ninth among the states in foreclosure rates.

Yet changes in Colorado’s completed foreclosure activity varied by region. Comparing the first half of 2009 to the first half of last year, the report notes that Adams, Arapahoe, and Denver counties all experienced significant declines in total numbers of completed foreclosures.

Pueblo County and Weld County, which have been among counties with the highest foreclosure rates in recent years, reported slight declines in completed foreclosures of 2 percent and 0.4 percent respectively.

The largest increases were found in counties outside of metro Denver. For the first half of the year, El Paso County reported an increase of 30 percent over the same period last year, while Mesa County reported an increase of 143 percent.

Many lenders and services such as Fannie Mae enacted both formal and informal moratoria on foreclosures, which slowed down the foreclosure process for many, according to the report.

“The purpose was to allow for more time to allow foreclosure prevention efforts to work,” the report reads. “Since the first quarter of 2009, these moratoria have been slowly phased out, and new foreclosure filings have increased. It is unknown if the phase-out of these moratoria will significantly accelerate the pace of new foreclosure activity during the second half of 2009.”

“Completed foreclosures are showing restrained growth,” said Ryan McMaken, a spokesperson with the Division of Housing.

“Although new filings are showing a bit of growth in some areas, we don’t expect substantial growth in completed foreclosures this year as compared to last year. That may be due to the fact that so many foreclosure prevention initiatives like the Foreclosure Hotline have really expanded services in recent years,” he added.

– Tonya Bina can be reached at 970-887-3334 ext. 19603 or e-mail