Colorado Springs, Colorado (KRDO) — State officials have created a program to help tenants struggling to pay rent during the COVID-19 pandemic. A similar program is now in place for homeowners.
The program, called the Colorado Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program under the Local Authority, will be allocated $175 million by the end of 2026.
Homeowners are eligible to apply if they experience financial hardship related to the COVID-19 pandemic on or after January 1, 2020 and have an income of 100% or less of the regional median income in their county.
The state says 750 homeowners have received assistance so far, including 106 in El Paso County, with 300 more lawsuits pending. The average homeowner’s winnings are $9,000 for him, and the highest is $40,000.
Randy Davis, program administrator for El Paso County, said the state has been processing applications since February and March, so it may be just the tip of the iceberg. It shows that the housing market in the region is cooling.
“This program really kicked off last fall,” said Rocky Mountain, an agency that consults first-time homebuyers and helps potential buyers find affordable homes. said Davis, who works for Community Land Trust. “But most places had to apply online. Now we have local offices that can help people navigate the process.”
Davis said 10 to 15 new foreclosures are filed each week, and the county has 455 foreclosures annually, three times more than last year.
Many people lost their jobs or had their salaries cut during the pandemic.
“In 2009, the county averaged 102 foreclosures per week,” says Davis. “Thankfully we are not there.”
But the apparent increase in foreclosures won’t help those still struggling to find affordable and available homes, she adds.
“A lot of people are hoping this situation can help,” she explained. I think you will.”
Davis said there are two factors at work related to the foreclosure.
“I believe the foreclosures you see here are by the lender, not by the homeowner,” he explained. “Maybe it’s the smaller financial institutions that didn’t survive because they missed so many mortgage payments. And in addition to rising inflation, we’re watching now.”
Anne Kidd, president of the Pikes Peak National Realtors Association, said the situation shouldn’t cause homeowners to panic.
“The sky is not falling,” she said. “I don’t believe that if you own property, someone should have to foreclose on it. We need so many buyers in our city right now that everyone panics.” No need. Foreclosure.”
But Davis says that those who do have it remain on their credit record for seven years, making it harder to find another home than the one they’ve already lost.
For more information, please visit https://cdola.colorado.gov/emergency-mortgage-assistance.