Thursday, September 18, 2014

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Nonprofit Helps City Homeowners Avoid Foreclosure Threat

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As new numbers show foreclosure filings in the five boroughs doubled last month compared to the same time last year, a nonprofit is reaching out to struggling residents, all in an effort to help keep them from losing their homes. NY1's Michael Herzenberg filed the following report.

Jayda, Johnny and Jeray Andrews are a source of constant joy for their parents. But the triplet surprise about three years ago brought unexpected expenses.

"Keeping food on the table, keeping the lights on keeping the heat, because we have oil heat, so keeping that going is crazy," said the triplets' mother, Deirdre Andrews.

Andrews says she started struggling to make her mortgage and got worried she would lose her Staten Island home.

"That wasn't going to happen," she noted.

So she and her husband came to the Jacob Javits Center Sunday where the Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America, or NACA, is trying to help hundreds of homeowners stay in their homes.

Residents, some of whom have received foreclosure notices, went over the documents at no cost. They showed counselors from the non profit their income and their mortgage rates to figure out what they can afford. Then they usually meet with a representative from their lender.

"We have legally binding contracts with all the major banks," said NACA founder and CEO Bruce Marks.

Marks says the banks will come down to interest rates as low as 2 percent and the services are needed in New York, especially now. According to Realtytrac.com in June, the number of properties that received a foreclosure filing in the city increased 100 percent from the same time last year.

"The mortgage crisis restart in Ohio, Florida and California. In those states you can do it very, very quickly. But in New York State it takes months, sometimes over a year to foreclose on a homeowner because it goes through the judicial process. So it's going to continue and probably get worse," Marks said.

Deirdra Andrews says she came to the Javits Center Sunday to avoid getting a foreclosure notice. And now her mortgage payment dropped from $2,100 per month to $1,800 per month.

NACA's American Dream event continues Monday at the Javits Center North from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Those interested should bring all relevant documents.

To preregister online, visit www.naca.com/nacaWeb/index_main.aspx.

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