Stephanie Elam, Eric Trujillo
The Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America helped hundreds of homeowners reduce their mortgage payments or deal with foreclosure. The event continues through Oct. 9 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Stephanie Elam reports from downtown Los Angeles for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Oct. 5, 2012.
People lined up on Friday at the Los Angeles Convention Center, hours before an event aimed at helping homeowners and home buyers avoid foreclosure.
The lines began forming overnight for the "American Dream Tour" sponsored by the Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America.
"My wife passed away so her income is gone," said Chris Haynes, of North Hills. "My industry I worked in has left California so I was forced into retirement. So I'm here looking for a little relief."
The 5-day event runs through Tuesday. Hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Walk-ins are welcome.
The event is aimed at homeowners hoping to avoid foreclosure and home buyers in search of mortgage terms they can handle.
"If a homeowner has a mortgage that is unaffordable and we can document and verify that, there's a great chance that we can reduce that mortgage payment," said Darren Duarte, director of communications for NACA, adding that nearly 60 percent of homeowners who have all their paperwork can leave the event having made a deal.
Victor Martinez was one of the lucky home buyers who received help.
"We are more than happy," said Martinez, who was able to get a 2 percent interest rate for a monthly mortgage payment of $2,200. " We are crying."
Cherish and Jesse Duncan also found help through NACA.
"What they did is reduced our payment down to $1,500 a month from $2,000," said Cherish Duncan. “And they also fixed our interest rate to 2 percent for the remaining of the loan."
But not everyone received the solution they wanted. Sharie Hailey was hopeful that she'd be able to turn her 5-year, 2 percent adjustable-rate mortgage into a 30-year fixed mortgage before the rate starts rising in 2015.
"I want to be safe, I want to be happy. I don't want to worry about it at all," she said.
Before noon, she had an answer.
"They denied me because I wanted a 30-year fixed but they said the program I was on won't allow it," she said.