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Brayton W

Unemployment program helped husband and wife after they were both laid off with newborn.

It’s a story that is heartbreaking for any family.

Brayton W. and his wife decided to buy their dream home in Riverside during 2009. Two years later, they welcomed a new little girl into the world.

After working at a hotel for more than four years, the company decided to downsize and, as a result, Brayton was laid off.

The family turned to their savings to pay the bills and mortgage. Brayton worried about what would happen after the money was gone from the savings account.

“That’s the last thing you want to do is move from house-to-house when you have a newborn,” Brayton says.
A couple months later, Brayton’s wife, a school nurse for a local school district, was also laid off.

Fortunately, Brayton found out about the Keep Your Home California program through an unemployment workshop.

“I spoke to a counselor and went through the process of applying for the unemployment assistance program,” Brayton says. “It was a blessing for the next nine months. I wouldn’t have to worry about my house payment while I looked for a job.”

The Unemployment Mortgage Assistance Program offers as much as $3,000 per month for up to 12 months for out-of-work homeowners. Qualifying homeowners must have received unemployment benefits from the state Employment Development Department within the past thirty days, at the time of their Keep Your Home California application.

He says it was the best feeling to know that his family could stay in their dream house.

“We didn’t really want to give up the house. It meant the world to my wife and me,” Brayton says. “To know there was a program to help you.”

He wants others to know the process is straightforward and the program can help tremendously.

Frank-H.

During the past dozen years, Frank H. has battled cancer, diabetes that caused him to lose his foot, the death of his parents and his longtime employer closed the plant where he worked and moved operations to Mexico.

Despite the challenges and difficulties, Frank feels blessed when he thinks of his family and friends, especially a housing counselor who introduced him to Keep Your Home California. He is also evidence that good things often happen to those who help others.

“I have a large family, and they’ve always been a big help,” says Frank, who often watches his nephews and nieces – and sometimes even their children — at his Fresno home. “My sister and brother often come over and bring me dinner.”

But he almost lost his home several months ago.

Frank was a manager of a door manufacturing company in Fresno when he lost his foot to diabetes in 2001, but he kept working. Several years later, the company closed the local plant and moved to Mexico, leaving Frank – and many others — without work. Then, he was diagnosed with cancer that required chemotherapy and radiation treatment.

Frank was approved for disability and still had health coverage because he paid $600 per month through his former employer. But even with health coverage, his medical bills were too much and prompted him to look at refinancing, a possible fix to his financial hardship.

“I tried to refinance, but they weren’t willing to restructure the loan,” says Frank, adding that he had multiple mortgage servicers during one year.

And as his mortgage servicers kept changing – making refinancing impossible – his medical bills kept arriving in the mail.

“My house was underwater, I just couldn’t make it,” Frank says. “I got behind on all of my bills. I had to choose every month what bills to pay.”

Frank had a longtime friend help him with some of his bills. And a chance meeting helped him lower his mortgage principal.

He was completing more refinance applications when he volunteered to help the needy in Fresno. His good deed led to good fortune, meeting housing counselor Elba Morales who had a booth at the event to help financially strapped homeowners. Morales was at the event on behalf of the Fresno Housing Authority, a HUD-approved housing counseling agency that partners with Keep Your Home California to help homeowners apply for the free program.

A few months later, Morales was digging through her documents looking for homeowners who could get help from Keep Your Home California and she remembered Frank.

“She went through the files in her closet to see who would be a good candidate” for the mortgage-assistance program, says Frank. “She knew that I was going through a rough time. She told me exactly what I needed to do. She took my hand, step by step.”

Frank applied for the Principal Reduction Program, which offers as much as $100,000 to homeowners, in late November. He was approved for the program two months later, and his principal was reduced by $47,000.

“Just taking that chunk off the principal, that’s a real Godsend,” says Frank, whose monthly mortgage payment dropped from $926 to $624.”It’s a lot of help to me, it’s a lifesaver.”

And that’s saying a lot for the cancer survivor who continues to deal with numerous health issues.

Carrie G

Homeowner says she was ‘simply a statistic’ to her mortgage servicer, then she came across Keep Your Home California and saved her house

Sometimes homeowners need a little help – and some hope.

Just ask Carrie G. The wife and mother of two toddlers was able to “catch up’ on her mortgage payments thanks to Keep Your Home California after a challenging, emotional and extremely frustrating experience with her mortgage servicer.

“We weren’t looking for a handout,” says Carrie, whose story is like many other homeowners in the state. Her husband, a construction worker, lost his job for six months and the family struggled financially, getting behind on their mortgage payments. “It’s our responsibility, our house.”

But “as hard as we tried to stay on top of our finances, things just got ahead of us and we ultimately fell behind on our mortgage,” says Carrie, who gave birth to their now 1-year-old daughter during this period.
So, Carrie, the manager of a veterinarian hospital, began looking at their mortgage options in order to save their home.

“For close to two years, I lived breathed and slept financial statements, tax returns, hardship letters and being transferred around from one bank employee to another,” she says. “I was simply just a statistic, not a wife, not a mother, not a homeowner.”

Eventually, their bank approved the couple for a temporary loan modification – and a smaller payment while her husband was out of work and on disability for six months. However, the mortgage servicer denied converting the temporary loan modification into a permanent modification, and even required the financially struggling couple to pay an additional $21,000.

She got the bad news the day before Thanksgiving in 2013.

“I was in tears, I just lost it,” says Carrie, who lives in the East Bay. “After a roller-coaster ride of being approved, then denied a modification with our lender, we ultimately faced the heart-wrenching reality that we may very well lose our home.”

Then, during one of her many calls with the mortgage servicer, a representative mentioned Keep Your Home California.

“I had heard the radio ads, but I thought it was just one more employee trying to shove me off to someone else,” she says. “We had already started looking for homes to rent and finding someone to help with the foreclosure.”

But Carrie contacted the Tri-Valley Housing Opportunity Center, one of the nonprofit housing counseling agencies that has partnered with Keep Your Home California, in the Bay Area. A certified housing counselor, Nai, walked Carrie and her husband through the application process – all for free.

“Not once did she make me feel ashamed of our situation,” Carrie says. “She offered nothing but support, guidance and assurance that we were not alone. It honestly seemed like a pipe dream that we would receive the aid.”

The couple applied for the free mortgage-assistance program in December and were approved in mid-January.

“They gave me updates, they didn’t give me false hope,” she says. “It’s some of the best news I’ve ever heard.”

Keep Your Home California’s Mortgage Reinstatement Assistance Program allowed the couple to “catch up” on their mortgage.

“I definitely sing your praises,” she says. “This is truly changing our life, changing our future and rescuing my family and our home. Words can’t express our gratitude for what has been done for us. We feel like this is a fresh start for us.”

And there are many other families in similar situations, Carrie says.

“My heart goes out to those people,” she says. “I know there are tens of thousands of people with stories much worse than ours. My advice to them is to not give up, have faith and persevere. You never know what may lay around the corner.”

Eleanor E

‘My home is my anchor,’ says homeowner who benefited from Mortgage Reinstatement Assistance Program

Homeowner Eleanor E. becomes emotional when she talks about Keep Your Home California.

“I’m here, I’ve got my home … and I was so close to losing it, says Eleanor, a hardworking grandmother who has lived in her Southern California home for the past 13 years.

But, like many Californians during the past several years, Eleanor lost her job, had a hard time finding work and got behind on her monthly mortgage payments.

“Early 2013 was awful; it was horrendous,” says Eleanor, whose mother died during the first few months of last year. “Problems don’t discriminate.”

In fact, Eleanor was close to filing for bankruptcy protection when she found a good job.

But even with her new job, there was still another financial hurdle – more than $20,000 in missed mortgage payments. Eleanor faced the reality of losing her home.

“I just kept getting further behind, I was devastated,” says Eleanor, whose daughter and two grandchildren live with her.

Then, she was told about Keep Your Home California’s Mortgage Reinstatement Assistance Program. The program offers as much as $25,000 to help homeowners like Eleanor to “catch up” on their mortgage payments.

“It didn’t take very long, maybe six weeks from start to finish” to be approved for the program, says Eleanor, who connected personally with the counseling center representative. “I felt like I had a friend who helped with my paperwork. I was in tears when she called. I think she was crying because I was crying.”

The house means a lot to Eleanor and her family.

“My home is my anchor,” says Eleanor, who has a 7-year-old autistic grandson.  “It’s so important for my grandson to have stability, come home to the same place. It would have been devastating (to lose the home).”

Now, the family gets to keep the home thanks to Keep Your Home California, a program that Eleanor shares with family and friends. In fact, she carries the phone number to the program in her wallet.

“It’s a Godsend, a miracle,” she says of the program. “I’m here, I’ve got my home, and I was so close to losing it.”

Testimonials

Unemployment Mortgage Assistance program helps Al save his home – and his dream

Soon after Al R. bought his dream house, he lost his great-paying job.

Like many homeowners in recent years, the American Dream had become a real-life nightmare – and an everyday struggle.

Al and his family made a few mortgage payments and then got behind. Then, he came across a mailer about Keep Your Home California, the free mortgage-assistance program that has helped more than 30,000 homeowners since February 2011.

“We thought it was too good to be true,” says Al, who applied twice for the program. “There was some serious nail-biting whether we were going to keep our home. One of our biggest fears was that the program would end before we were approved.”

The program will not end anytime soon. Keep Your Home California received almost $2 billion from the federal government, so there are quite a few dollars still available for financially strapped homeowners.

Al was approved for the Unemployment Mortgage Assistance Program, which offers as much as $3,000 per month for up to 12 months. Homeowners who meet the program income limits and are also collecting jobless benefits from the Employment Development Department, are eligible for the program.

“It really works; it’s what we needed,” says Al, who lives in the Sacramento region. “We’re so grateful.”

Now, he talks about the program when he comes across homeowners struggling with their mortgage payments.

“We can’t be more appreciative or more supportive of the program,” says Al, whose daughter also benefited from the Unemployment Mortgage Assistance program in recent months.

Now, Al is back to work and making his mortgage payments on his own.

“The bottom line is that we got it, and it saved our home,” he says. “And we love our house, it’s our dream house.”

Our programs are designed to help you keep your home if you've suffered a financial hardship.

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Is your home in California?

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Do you own and occupy your home as your primary residence?

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Is the amount you owe on your first mortgage loan equal or less than $729,750?

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Is your County household income equal to or less than ?

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Have you experienced a financial hardship (such as a loss of income, significant medical expenses, divorce, severe negative equity, etc.) that is making it difficult for you to keep your home?

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Are you in an active bankruptcy?

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Great, you may be eligible for all or some of our programs!

Just answer a few more questions to find out which of our programs is best for you.

Which programs are best for you?

Have you received unemployment benefits from the California Employment Development Department (EDD) within the past 30 days?

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Are you two or more payments past due on your first mortgage loan?

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Do you owe more on your first mortgage than your home's current value?

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Are you currently participating in a trial payment plan for a modification with your mortgage servicer?

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Are you working with your mortgage loan servicer on a Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure or a Short Sale?

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Based on your responses you do not qualify for a Keep Your Home California program, but we still want to help! Find out about the other options that are available to you by clicking the link below.

Don’t worry, other programs are available

Don't worry, other programs are available.

Although you do not qualify for a Keep Your Home California program, your mortgage Servicer or housing counselor from a HUD-approved agency may have other options that are available to you. These options include:

1) Federal Mortgage Relief

  • Load Modification
  • Refinance
  • Short sale assistance
  • Deed in lieu help

More Information »

2) Your Mortgage Servicer

  • Forbearance
  • Repayment plan
  • Short sale
  • Cash for keys

Contact your service provider for more information

Need more help?

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You may be eligible for the following Keep Your Home California Programs:

Call us at (888) 954-5337

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