Homes foreclosed in Colorado rose in November by almost 12 percent from November last year, but foreclosure sales dropped by 0.5 percent, based on data from the Colorado Division of Housing.

A total of 2,802 foreclosures were posted in November, an increase from 2,506 postings in November 2008. Foreclosure sales dropped to 1,512 units in November, down by 8 units from October.

Compared to the 3,234 foreclosure filings in the previous month, filings dropped by 13 percent in November. Foreclosure sales also dropped from 1,518 units in October.

According to Ryan McMaken, spokesperson for the state Housing Division, foreclosure sales dropped partly because many counties held fewer foreclosure auctions in November. They did not hold auctions before Thanksgiving and on Veterans Day.

Total foreclosure filings for the 11-month period from January to November also increased by 12 percent from 32,744 filings last year to 36,628 filings this year. Foreclosure sales dropped to 14,975 units, a 13-percent decrease from the previous sales of 17,160 units.

Analysts in Colorado cited the role of housing counselors in the decreased number of homes foreclosed. About 4,000 distressed mortgages were saved from foreclosure through loan modifications.

In November, more than 18,000 housing units were available for sale in Colorado, a drop of 17 percent from October. For the 11-month period ended November, foreclosure sales increased significantly in the counties of Mesa and Boulder, with sales in Mesa rising by 181 percent and with sales in Boulder rising by 126 percent. In El Paso, foreclosure sales climbed up by 11 percent from November last year.

In Weld County, foreclosure sales for the period from January to November totaled 1,448 while foreclosure filings totaled 3,036, up by 18 percent from last year. In Larimer, foreclosure sales decreased by four percent to 727, but filings climbed up to 1,947.

According to housing officials, the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline program helped in pushing down the number of actual foreclosure sales, as shown in the sharp difference between the number of filings and actual foreclosure sales. Typically, distressed homeowners have 4 months to make current their delinquent loans from the date of notice of default.

Among the counties, Mesa County had the biggest year-over-year jump in actual foreclosures, posting an increase of 181 percent. The counties of El Paso and Boulder posted increases in the number of homes foreclosed and taken back by lenders by 11 percent and 126 percent, respectively, while other Colorado counties posted decreases in actual foreclosures.

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