I’m not sure if Colorado has truly deserved the maligning it’s received for being a cesspool of foreclosures and slimy lending practices (there’s plenty of blame to go around for either topic) but when you’re a national punchline for so long, regardless of whether it’s true or not, sometime it’s nice for the truth to come out. CNBC just named Colorado as one of the top 5 states to do business in the US!
Wow, how do you go from the outhouse to the penthouse in one fell swoop? First off, it’s not one fell swoop. Second, Colorado was hardly in the outhouse to begin with… first and foremost, Colorado’s faulty definition of a foreclosure is partially to blame for what now could be said are inflated foreclosure rates. According to the Colorado Springs’ Gazette, the state records a foreclosure when the lender files the paperwork, not when the property is sold. The difference is that when a lender files, the homeowner (or lienholder) still has ample time to redeem.
Of course, this is the same state legislature, that up until the beginning of 2008, didn’t require any sort of licensing for mortgage brokers operating in this state. I remember finding a home for a couple that moved here from Chicago and was going to use one of their “boys” to do the loan. When I spoke with this lender to get a pre-approval letter, not only was there no letterhead from his company, but he spelled the name of my firm (at the time, the most recognized real estate company in the world) incorrectly.
When I called him out on it, his reply was, “Hey, it’s Denver. It’s the Wild West out there. Who cares?” I asked my clients if they wouldn’t mind finding a local lender, which they did, and everything went smoothly from that point forward. That was a couple of years ago, but you get the point. Reputations die hard. Which is why CNBC’s article, combined with the DNC’s impending arrival is giving this town a much-needed shot in the arm. I’m reserving judgement on how the city and state capitalize on these invigorations (think Chicago after their DNC hosting, not Montreal after their Olympics).