WEST PALM BEACH, FL (WFLX) - As the number of people losing homes to foreclosure grows, there is new help for Palm Beach County families. The City of West Palm Beach's ground-breaking Foreclosure Assistance Center is now expanding county-wide.
The center in downtown West Palm, has helped more than 230 families stay in their homes, and helped others work out short sales. But until now, you had to be a resident of the city to get help here.
Tuesday Mayor Lois Frankel and others announced the city is joining forces with Palm Beach County, several African Methodist Episcopal churches, and a Maryland-based not-for-profit group called HomeFree USA.
City workers at the downtown Foreclosure Center will soon be joined by staffers from HomeFree USA, who will handle calls from people who live outside the city. Appointments with counselors will be set up at the Foreclosure Center or at one of 5 AME churches in Delray Beach, Boynton Beach, suburban West Palm Beach, Riviera Beach, and Pahokee.
Linda Zammiello was pleased to hear about the expansion of the foreclosure effort. She recently got help at the West Palm center. The single mother's household not only includes her own two daughters, but her mother, sister, and five nieces and nephews as well.
Zammiello got sick in 2007. At the same time, her sister had a baby. The household income dropped to almost nothing. Zammiello refinanced, but that left her with a $2,300 mortgage payment. She fell behind and eventually got a foreclosure notice.
The Foreclosure Center helped get Zammiello a reduced mortgage payment of $1,800 and ultimately paid $9,700 to bring Zammiello's mortgage up-to-date.
"It was a blessing," exclaimed Zammiello. "I was praying. It was a blessing that we got help."
Palm Beach County residents wishing to meet with a foreclosure counselor should call the center at 561-822-1583.