The Colorado Foreclosure Hotline is three-years-old this month.
The hotline received more than 3,000 calls its first month in October 2006.
Since thenn, call volume has soared above 85,000 calls, averaging anywhere between 2,000 to 4,000 calls per month.
“We had no idea what to expect when the Hotline began,” said Stephanie Riggi, the Hotline’s manager. Riggi was a key player in the founding of the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline. “But we’ve seen the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline successfully help homeowners since the day the phone lines opened.”
The Colorado Foreclosure Hotline is a toll-free number that networks 27 HUD-approved housing counseling agencies across the state. Homeowners concerned about losing their home to foreclosure who call the toll-free number are routed to the agency nearest their property by entering their Zip Code.
“The process only begins from there,” Riggi said. “We advocate for face-to-face housing counseling; callers need to set appointments with the agency to which they’re routed. All services are free of charge.”
In a face-to-face counseling session, borrowers learn about the foreclosure process and important deadlines; review their budget, loan product, and hardship information with a counselor to determine what workout option is best suited for their situation; and communicate with their lender alongside their housing counselor.
Despite increases in call-volume and constant changes to the housing counseling industry, the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline maintains the success rate established early on: four out of five homeowners who complete a housing counseling session will avoid foreclosure.
Approximately 20 percent of calls placed to the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline translate into a face-to-face housing counseling session.
Since the October 2006 inception, more than 13,000 Colorado homeowners have successfully avoided foreclosure. Workout options include loan modifications; refinancing; repayment plans; and pre-foreclosure sales and short sales.
Because of the focus on local, one-on-one counseling and its success in helping homeowners, the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline has received national attention.
Since 2006, the program has been recognized by the National Association of Realtors; the National Governor’s Association; the Wall Street Journal; National Public Radio; CNN; and TIME Magazine. Colorado was the first state to launch a Hotline and network to deal with foreclosures.
Slated to continue offering services throughout the course of the foreclosure crisis, the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline continues to develop its staff, its outreach methods, and its efficiency.
For a complete look at the history of the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline, tomorrow afternoon visit the call center at Brothers Redevelopment, Inc., at 2250 Eaton St., Edgewater.
From 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline will host an open house to celebrate the success of the program and to thank the many people and organizations involved in this very collaborative effort.
For more information, visit www.coloradoforeclosurehotline.blogspot.com or contact the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline Call Center at (303) 685-4200.
For a list of housing counseling agencies and other partners or sponsors, visit www.coloradoforeclosurehotline.org. If you are in need of housing counseling or have questions regarding your mortgage, call the Colorado Foreclosure Hotline at 1-877-601-HOPE (4673).
Contact John Rebchook at JRCHOOK@gmail.com or 303-945-6865.