Monday, June 30, 2014

Colorado foreclosure filings down 31 percent in May

Foreclosure filings were down 31.4 percent in Colorado metro counties during May 2014, falling year over year to the lowest level recorded during May in any year since the Division of Housing began collecting monthly totals in 2007. According to a report released Wednesday by the Colorado Division of Housing, foreclosure auction sales in Colorado’s metropolitan counties were down 45.0 percent in May this year compared to May of last year, falling from 720 to 396. Over the same period,foreclosure filings dropped from 1,113 to 763. For the first five months of the year combined, from January through May, foreclosure filings were down 25.3 percent in 2014when compared to the same period last year.

Foreclosure auction sales were down 40.3 percent over the same period. Foreclosure filings are the initial filing that begins the foreclosure process, and foreclosure auction sales totals are the total number of foreclosures that have been sold at auction at the end of the foreclosure process. “We're looking at an eight-year low for May foreclosures, and both filings and sales have fallen, year over year, for the past nineteen months," said Ryan McMaken, an economist for the Colorado Division of Housing. “The downward trend is likely to continue as long as employment is stable and we continue to see rather low mortgage rates.”

 Year-to-date through May this year, compared to the same period last year, the counties with the largest drops in foreclosurefilings were Broomfield and Douglas counties where filings decreased by 53.4 percent and 48.4 percent, respectively. All counties surveyed reported year-to-date declines in filings, except for El Paso County which reported an increase of 0.6 percent. Foreclosure auction sales were down in all counties surveyed in the year-to-date numbers, with Boulder and Larimer counties reporting the largest declines, year over year.

Year-to-date through May, auction sales were down 58.3 percent in Boulder County and 53.9 percent in Larimer County, compared to the same period of last year. The county with the highest rate of foreclosure sales during May was Mesa County with a rate of 1,578 households perforeclosure sale. Pueblo County came in second with 1,676 households per foreclosure sale. The lowest rate was found in Boulder County where there were 30,820 households per foreclosure sale during May. #222222;">May.

May 2014 Foreclosure Report for Metro Counties

May 2014's monthly foreclosure report.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Colorado's mortgage delinquency rates fall during 2014's first quarter

Serious mortgage delinquencies in Colorado fell from the fourth quarter of 2013 to the fourth quarter of 2014, dropping to the lowest level recorded since 2008.  During the first quarter, the 90-day delinquency rate was 1.3 percent in Colorado. The rate was 1.5 percent during the fourth quarter of 2013.  The national 90-day delinquency rate was 2.39 percent during the first quarter of 2014, and it was 2.55 percent during the fourth quarter of 2013.

The first graph shows the 90-day delinquency rates since 2005:



30-day delinquencies for the first quarter of 2014 were at a nine-year low for the first quarter, and were at the lowest level recorded in any quarter since 2006. During the first quarter of 2014, 1.71 percent of loans in Colorado were 30-days delinquent.  The rate was 2.12 percent during the 4th quarter of 2013, and it was 2.18 percent during the first quarter of 2013.  A new low in 30-day delinquencies suggests more declines in foreclosure activity in Colorado, at least in the short term.



The foreclosure inventory also fell during the first quarter of 2014 in Colorado and has fallen for the past fourteen quarters in a row. Colorado's foreclosure inventory dropped to 0.94 percent during the first quarter of 2014, falling from 2013's fourth-quarter rate of 0.96 percent. The inventory was also down from 2013's first-quarter rate of 1.38 percent. The third graph shows the foreclosure inventory in Colorado and the US:




National Comparisons:

As can be seen in the first and third graph, Colorado's foreclosure inventory and 90-day delinquency rates are well below the national rates.

The U.S. foreclosure inventory rate was 2.65 percent during the first quarter of 2014.

Using the 90-day delinquency rate to compare Colorado to all other states, we find that Colorado had the sixth-lowest delinquency rate in the nation during the first quarter of 2014. The only states with lower 90-day delinquency rates were North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, Wyoming and Alaska. The lowest 90-day delinquency rate in the nation was found in North Dakota where it was 0.49 percent, and the highest rate was found in Mississippi where it was 4.2 percent.

Delinquencies are measured by the MBA via surveys sent to major loan servicers. The MBA estimates it covers 88 percent of all first-lien residential mortgage loans outstanding in the US with the survey.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

1st Quarter 2014 Statewide Vacancy and Rent Survey

Apartment rents soar in northern Colorado as vacancies fall across state

Rents in Colorado rose statewide during the first quarter of 2014, with the statewide average rent hitting an all-time high of $1,026. According to a report released today by the Colorado Division of Housing, the average rent during the first quarter was up 8.0 percent from last year’s first-quarter average rent of $950, and it was up from last year’s fourth-quarter rent of $992.

Rent growth was not uniform statewide. The average rent was flat in Pueblo from the first quarter of 2013 to the first quarter of 2014. In Grand Junction, during the same period, the average rent fell 5.2 percent. On the other hand. rents soared in northern Colorado with the average rent rising 17.2 percent, year over year, in Ft. Collins, and 12.6 percent in Greeley. 

Average rents in all metropolitan areas measured for the first quarter of 2014 were Colorado Springs; $822, Ft. Collins, $1216; Loveland, $1026; Grand Junction, $525; Greeley, $793; Pueblo, $595. The average rent in metro Denver, measured last month in a separate survey, was $1,073. 


“Rent growth has accelerated in northern Colorado and metro Denver over the past year, pushed along by job growth and demand that continues to outpace new construction in many market areas," said Ryan McMaken, an economist with the Colorado Division of Housing. "We have seen vacancies pushed up a little in some markets with a significant amount of new multifamily construction, such as Colorado Springs and metro Denver, but it has not been enough to push the average rent back down. 

The vacancy rate in Colorado apartments during the first quarter of 2014 rose across the state with the statewide composite vacancy rate rising year over year to 5.2 percent from 2013’s first-quarter vacancy rate of 4.9 percent. The first quarter’s rate was down from 2014’s fourth-quarter rate of 5.4 percent.

Vacancy rates varied in different metros of the state, however, with the Ft. Collins/Loveland area’s vacancy rate dropping to a thirteen-year low of 1.7 percent while Colorado Springs’s vacancy rate increased to 6.7 percent. Grant Junction's vacancy rate dropped to a five-year low of 5.3 percent. 

“Greeley is one of those places where brand-new buildings in the process of lease-up have increased the vacancy rate, with Greeley's rate rising to 4.4 percent, McMaken said. "But if we ignore the brand-new buildings in our calculations, we find a vacancy rate of only 0.7 percent in Greeley overall which shows that there's still a very tight market there."

Vacancy rates in all metropolitan areas measured for the first quarter of 2014 were Colorado Springs; 6.7 percent, Ft. Collins/Loveland, 1.7 percent; Grand Junction, 5.3 percent; Greeley, 4.4 percent; Pueblo, 8.1 percent. The vacancy rate in metro Denver, measured last month in a separate survey, was 5.1 percent. 


A vacancy rate of 5 percent or below suggests a tight market. The statewide composite vacancy rate and average rent includes metro Denver.

Friday, June 6, 2014

April foreclosure filings fall for 18th month in a row

The April foreclosure data for Colorado's 12 metropolitan counties is now available. Foreclosure filings and foreclosure auction sales were near an eight-year low during April 2014, with foreclosure filings dropping 29 percent, year over year, from April 2013 to April 2014. Foreclosure auction sales, over the same period, dropped 38.9 percent in all metros combined. 

The first graph shows  filings and sales for each month since 2007.  There were 876 foreclosure filings and 470 foreclosure sales during April: 


A six-month moving average gives us a clearer look at the overall trend. Not surprisingly, the trend has been generally downward for some time, but has flattened out in recent months:



The third graph shows the foreclosure filings total for each month.  We see that April's total was the lowest total ever recorded in April since the survey was begun in 2007, and is thus an 8-year low for April. 


The next graph shows the foreclosure auction sales totals for each month. We see here that April's total of 470 is still slightly above 2008's April total when a change in the foreclosure process forced a very small number of completed foreclosures.  



Both foreclosure filings and sales are down year over year in April, which means that both filings and sales have been down YOY every month for the past 18 months.



Here are charts showing the breakouts by metropolitan counties.

This chart shows foreclosure filings for April 2013 and April 2014.  Total filings were down 29 percent year over year.



This chart shows foreclosure auction sales comparing April 2013 and April 2014. The overall total was down 38.9 percent. 


This graph shows the month over month change in foreclosure filings. From March 2014 to April 2014, total foreclosure filings fell 10.7 percent. 


From March 2014 to April 2014, total foreclosure sales at auction rose 16.3 percent. 


The final graph shows the foreclosure rate, based on total occupied households for each county divided by the number of foreclosure auction sales. April 2013 stats on left, and April 2014 stats on right. The lower the number, the worse the foreclosure rate: 


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Foreclosure filings continue slide, drop 25 percent in early 2014

New foreclosure filings were down 24.7 percent in Colorado during the first quarter of 2014, compared to the first quarter of 2013. According to a report released Wednesday by the Colorado Division of Housing, there were 3,441 foreclosure filings reported from January through March of 2014, compared to 4,571 during the same period of last year.

Foreclosure auction sales, or completed foreclosures, also fell significantly over the same period, dropping 41.5 percent from 2013’s first-quarter total of 2,935 to this year’s first-quarter total of 1,718.  


Although foreclosure activity was down year-over-year, filings and sales increased from the fourth quarter of 2013 to the first quarter of 2014. Foreclosure filings rose 15.4 percent from 2013's fourth-quarter total of 2,981 to 2014's first-quarter total of 3,441. Foreclosure sales rose 4.1 percent from 1,650 to 1,718 over the same period.

“Foreclosures have been rising from late 2013's very-low totals," said Ryan McMaken, economist for the Colorado Division of Housing. “But the increases are rather small and foreclosure totals remain near ten-year lows."

Of the state’s twelve metropolitan counties, only El Paso County reported a year-over-year increase in foreclosure filings. Filings increased 6.4 percent from the first quarter of 2013 to the first quarter of 2014, rising from 549 to 584.  The counties with the largest declines in foreclosure filings were Boulder County and Broomfield County with drops of 32.3  percent and 61.0 percent, respectively.


When adjusted for population size, the counties with the highest foreclosure rates during the first quarter were all found outside the Front Range, and Mesa County was the only metropolitan county in the top ten. The top five counties for the proportion of homes that were in foreclosure during the first quarter were Bent, San Juan, Teller, Las Animas, and Mesa.


Foreclosure sales are opened foreclosures that have proceeded through the full foreclosure process to final sale at public auction. Filings denote the beginning of the foreclosure process, and once a foreclosure is filed, the borrower has at least 110-120 days to work with the lender to avoid a completed foreclosure. It is during this period that borrowers work with lenders and housing counselors to work out loan modifications, short sales, or other ways of withdrawing the foreclosure. 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

First Quarter 2014 Foreclosure Report for All Counties

First Quarter 2014 Foreclosure Report for All Counties

Friday, May 30, 2014

News Digest, May 30

Study: Affordable housing situation getting worse in Colorado Springs area
El Paso County's affordable housing shortage should near 19,900 units by 2019 - a gap most likely to affect the county's poorest residents and middle-class earners, a new housing assessment has found. + captio A low vacancy rate for both rentals and homes for purchase, poor earnings and a disproportionate number of new high-end units in El Paso County are largely to blame, according to the preliminary results of a report on the region's affordable housing stock, which was commissioned by Colorado Springs and the county.

Challenge to affordable housing rules is dropped A California businessman who owns numerous rental units in Aspen on Wednesday dismissed his lawsuit that challenged the constitutionality of local affordable housing regulations, ending a six-year legal battle.

Colorado Springs puts plans for a homeless day center on hold for the short-term Creation of a homeless day center in Colorado Springs will be delayed up to a year amid concerns that nonprofits need more time and flexibility to embark on the project, a Colorado Springs official said this week. The project's delay marks the first setback to Mayor Steve Bach's initiative to end homelessness, affecting one of the more popular aspects of the six-point plan he announced in late January. But two nonprofit leaders also said it signaled a greater willingness by the city to listen to their suggestions, rather than rush to an uneducated, one-size-fits-all approach.


March foreclosures fall 7 percent

The March foreclosure data for Colorado's 12 metropolitan counties is now available. Foreclosure filings and foreclosure auction sales were near an eight-year low during March 2014, with foreclosure filings dropping 7 percent, year over year, from March 2013 to March 2014. Foreclosure auction sales, over the same period, dropped 35.3 percent in all metro s combined. 

The first graph shows  filings and sales for each month since 2007.  There were 981 foreclosure filings and 404 foreclosure sales during March: 

A six-month moving average gives us a clearer look at the overall trend. Not surprisingly, the trend has been a downward one for some time:


The third graph shows the foreclosure filings total for each month.  We see that March's total was the lowest total ever recorded in March since the survey was begun in 2007. It is not an all-time low, however. 


The next graph shows the foreclosure auction sales totals for each month. We see here that March's total of 404 sales is just slightly above the all-time recorded low of 386, recorded during November 2013. 


Both foreclosure filings and sales are down year over year in March, which means that both filings and sales have been down YOY every month for the past 17 months. However, March's decline in filings was the smallest decline experienced over that 17 months. 



Here are charts showing the breakouts by metropolitan counties.

This chart shows foreclosure filings for March 2013 and March 2014.  Total filings were down 7 percent year over year.



This chart shows foreclosure auction sales comparing March 2013 and March 2014. The overall total was down 36.3 percent. 


This graph shows the month over month change in foreclosure filings. From February 2014 to March 2014, total foreclosure filings rose 7.3 percent. 


From February 2014 to March 2014, total foreclosure sales at auction rose 0.7 percent. 



The final graph shows the foreclosure rate, based on total occupied households for each county divided by the number of foreclosure auction sales. March 2013 stats on left, and March 2014 stats on right. The lower the number, the worse the foreclosure rate: 


1st Q 2014 Vacancy and Rent Report for Colorado Springs:

Note: There is an error on page one where the text reads: "Rents do not include the cost of rental discounts and concessions. For the fourth quarter of 2013, rental discounts and concessions averaged 11.9 percent, up from 7.3 percent for the prior quarter."

 This SHOULD state: "Rents do not include the cost of rental discounts and concessions. For the first quarter of 2014, rental discounts and concessions averaged 11.9 percent, up from 7.3 percent for the prior quarter."

Monday, May 5, 2014

Metro Denver's average rent up 8 percent in first quarter as rent growth strengthens region-wide

In new data released this week the apartment vacancy rate in metro Denver was up year over year in metro Denver, rising from 4.6 percent during the first quarter of 2013 to 5.1 percent during the first quarter of 2014. The vacancy rate in metro Denver was 5.2 percent during the fourth quarter of 2013.

The first graph shows the metro-wide vacancy rate:


We can see that the vacancy rates in recent quarters has come up a bit from 2013's very low rates. This is due to new construction in downtown Denver and several other submarkets. Overall, however, vacancy rates remain near some of the lowest levels recorded since 2001.

In the second graph, we see that the decline in the vacancy rates since 2009 have not been limited to any one or two county areas, and that the declines have been general. With the exception of Denver county and Boulder/Broomfield, the first-quarter vacancy rates were all under 5 percent. Denver County and Boulder/Broomfield reported vacancy rates of 6.8 percent and 6.7 percent, respectively, however, and this was due to new construction of  units. The lowest vacancy rate at the county level was found in Jefferson county where the vacancy rate was 3.4 percent.


The average rent for metro Denver can be seen in the third graph. The average rent hit $1,073 during the first quarter of 2014 , and was up from $992 during the first quarter of last year.  The average rent for the area was 1,041 during the fourth quarter of 2013. 



We can see steady increases in general with only a couple of periods of declining rents: from 2001 to 2002, and from 2008 to 2009.  The periods of the greatest growth in recent periods have been the late 1990s and the period since 2011. Rent growt hhas accelerated since 2009.

The fourth graph shows the growth rates in average rent more clearly.  We can see that year-over-year growth rates since the first quarter of 2012 have been coming in at more than 4 percent each quarter. Historically, this is a strong growth rate, but we can also see that it's still below what was reported during the dot-com boom, when growth rates were often above six percent. Nevertheless, the growth over the past seven quarters has been substantial, and the growth rate for the first quarter of 2014 is the highest growth rate measured since 2001. The average rent grew 8.1 percent from the first quarter fo4 2013 to the first quarter of 2014.


In a county-by county basis, we find the following growth rates for the first quarter of 2013 to the first quarter of 2014: 
Adams 8.5%
Arapahoe 8%
Boulder/Broomfield 6.7%
Denver 8.3%
Douglas 6.3%
Jefferson 8.1%

The final graph shows the vacancy rate for all market areas, from the first Q of 2013 to the first Q of 2014. We see that almost all submarkets have fallen below five percent over the past year. This shows that even the traditionally less-demanded areas are seeing tightening vacancies as more popular submarkets tighten up and residents begin to seek vacancy housing across all submarkets. 






Homeownership in Colorado falls again in 2013

According to the most recent data from the Census Bureau, the homeownership rate in Colorado fell again in Colorado, dropping to 64.4 percent, which was the lowest rate reported since 1997 in Colorado.  The national homeownership rate during 2013 65.1 percent. During 2012, the homeownership rate was 65.3 percent in Colorado and 65.4 percent nationwide. Nationally, the 2013 homeownership rate was the lowest rate reported since 1995.

The first graph shows annual homeownership rates since 1984. In Colorado, the homeownership rate has fallen every year since 2003, and nationally, it has fallen every year since 2004.


When people think of declining homeowership rates, they often think of foreclosures and people being unable to afford home purchases. These are certainly factors, but they are not the only ones. We can indeed look to foreclosures and a general weakness in the economy when we see the low homeownership rates of the late 1980s in the first graph. When we examine more recent trends in homeownership rates, however, it is likely that an expansion of a younger population interested more in multifamily housing is also a major factor.

If we look at the homeownership rate a second way, we can see this at work. The second graph shows the trend in renter-occupied units. This is just the homeownership rate subtracted from 100. Here we see that the growth in occupied rental units has been increasing since 2002, but it still does not reach where it was in 1989.

We can note that in 1989, home prices in Colorado were faring quite poorly, but the proportion of residents who were renters remained quite high, as a result of a weak economy in 1989. Today, however, renters continue to grow. In the current cycle, as opposed to 1989, home prices are growth quickly (8 to 10 percent year over year) and show a different dynamic at work.



Friday, May 2, 2014

New Home Sales in US West Down From 2013 Levels

New single-family home sales in the U.S. West were down 27 percent from March 2013 to March 2014, coming in at 8,000 new homes for March 2014, and marked the third month in a row during which new home sales declined form the same month one year earlier. According to the most recent Census Bureau report on new home sales, new home sales grew, year over year through 2012 and during much of 2012 and 2013, but began to moderate during late 2013 and have turned negative in recent months.

The report, which monitors sales activity for newly constructed houses, showed that new home sales in the West remain down 78 percent from peak levels. 

The first graph shows monthly new home sales totals for each month since 2003. While still up from 2010 and 2011 levels, 2014 totals so far show no signs of outpacing 2013. 

In the second graph, we see the year-over-change for each month, and it is clear that growth rates have come down considerable since 2012 and early 2013. The last three months are negative growth rates, and growth rates have been negative during 7 of the last 9 months. 


A month-by-month look at the West region: 



Comparing monthly totals, we find that the first 3 months of 2013 were rather robust compared to the previous year, but for the same period this year, all months are down. In March especially, totals were nothing remarkable and were even down from 2010 levels.

The number of new homes for sale, on the other hand was up 43 percent, rising from 30,000 during August 2012 to 30,000 during March 2013. to 43,000 during March 2014. This reflects growth in new home production, which we know has increased throughout the region, including Colorado, in response to significant growth in home prices during 2013.  

As a final note, we can also look to the new home inventory. In this case, we calculate inventory by subtracting the number of new home sales in a given month from the number of new homes for sale at the end of the previous month. We see in the graph that the inventory bottomed out in 2012, but has come up a little over the past year. Inventory was tied at a 38-month high during March 2013, rising to 34,000 which was the highest reported since February 2011.



Housing News Digest, May 2

San Jose Leaders Look To Build ‘Pods,’ ‘Microhouses’ To Shelter The Homeless A new idea is taking shape in San Jose to help the down and out get out of tents and doorways and into more sturdy shelters. The idea involves building new neighborhoods for the homeless with shed-sized buildings.

Construction-defects reform bill companion dies in Colorado Legislature A three-pronged approach to addressing the shortage of affordable condominiums in Colorado lost a prong Thursday when a Senate committee decided there was no need to have multiple state agencies study the issue.

  Developers intent on improving state of downtown Colorado Springs housing It has been nearly two years since the Urban Land Institute called for the creation of 250 to 300 housing units in downtown Colorado Springs, and the city has yet to see such results. But a handful of local developers are pushing through economic and bureaucratic hurdles in attempts to reach that goal. The ULI report, published in June 2012, suggested that the development of additional living space in the city’s core would not only create the potential to attract residents, but also business and social opportunity — ultimately economic development and revitalization.

  Open house set for student housing in Greeley GREELEY - Construction on a 92-unit student-housing complex with 262 beds in Greeley is nearly complete, and an open house is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesday, April 30. University of Northern Colorado students and other members of the public can tour the finished portions of the University Flats at UNC, 1758 6th Ave. University Flats is two blocks from the University of Northern Colorado campus. Preleasing is going on now for August move-ins.

 Colorado Springs-area homebuilding falls again in April The pace of local homebuilding for the first few months of 2014 continues to lag behind last year, according to a report Thursday by the Pikes Peak Regional Building Department. Single-family building permits, which measure the number of homes to be constructed by builders, totaled 257 in April, a nearly 15 percent drop from the same month last year, the report showed. Permit totals have declined in seven of the last nine months on a year-over-year basis.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Home loan payoffs in Colorado fall to five-year low


The number of home loans paid off in Colorado fell 49 percent from the first quarter of 2013 to the first quarter of 2014, a decline partially fueled by increasing mortgage rates during the second half of 2013. According to a new report released today by the Colorado Division of Housing, public trustees in Colorado released a total of 50,128 deeds of trust during the first quarter of 2014, which was the lowest quarterly total recorded in any quarter since the Division began collecting quarterly totals in 2008. 98,321 deeds were released during the first quarter of last year.

Typically, a release of a deed of trust occurs when a real estate loan is paid off whether through refinance, sale of property, or because the owner has made the final payment on the loan. Decreases in release activity occur as refinance and home-sale activity decreases, and rising release totals typically indicate increases in the demand for home loans and real estate.

Release activity also fell from the fourth quarter of 2013 to the first quarter of 2014, dropping 19.6 percent.  There were 62,312 deeds released during the fourth quarter of last year.

“This is the fourth quarter in a row of declines in release activity, and it looks like the most recent refinance boom is already over,” said Ryan McMaken, an economist with the Colorado Division of Housing. “Mortgage rates are still low compared to where they were in 2008, but we’ve seen some significant increases in rates since 2012.”

Trends in release activity were not uniform across the state, although all of the 21 counties surveyed reported decreases in release activity from the first quarter of 2013 to the first quarter of this year. The largest increases were reported in Broomfield and Boulder counties where release activity decreased 61.5 percent and 58.9 percent, respectively. The smallest decreases were found in Eagle and Alamosa counties where activity decreased 21.1 percent and 31.1 percent, respectively.

Adjusted for the number of existing housing units in each county, the counties with the highest rates of release activity during 2014’s first quarter were Douglas, Summit, and Weld counties. The counties with the least activity were Fremont, Pueblo and Delta counties.

“Release activity is still relatively strong in some high-income areas and places with strong employment,” McMaken said.

Totals for releases of deeds of trust are collected quarterly by the Colorado Division of Housing. This report tracks releases of deeds of trust as reported by public trustees in Colorado. The report includes twenty-one counties which are chosen based on population size and to ensure that as many regions of the state as possible are represented. More than 90 percent of all occupied households in Colorado are within the twenty-one counties chosen.