In Miami, where the Zika virus has caused the highest death toll among major U.S. cities, volunteers are using their skills to help ailing homeowners and to raise money for hurricane relief efforts.
FourFour is a national nonprofit that provides information and assistance to Americans during times of crisis.
In the past year, we’ve helped help more than 100,000 people find new housing, assist with emergency shelter and support families with Hurricane Irma.
This week, we’re bringing the story of four volunteer mortgage bankers from Florida to FourFourLive.
Reporter: The Miami-Dade County Housing Authority has taken advantage of a federal program to help people who have lost their homes in the Zika crisis.
The program has helped the city of Miami land on the national map, and the city is using it to help other neighborhoods as well.
They’re asking for volunteers to help out with foreclosure sales and help the city assess properties.
The bank has been very active, and they’ve asked for help.
Reporter:: FourFour Live is a nonprofit that helps Americans during a time of crisis by bringing viewers a live broadcast from a crisis hotline.
We want to be able to bring the voices of the volunteers that we have to the viewers.
The Miami Housing Authority said it will offer two volunteer mortgage help lines.
The first is in the Miami Beach area.
The second is in South Florida.
The city has been helping more than 20,000 homeowners with foreclosure issues.
Four Four is the largest of its kind in the country, and it’s helping homeowners across the country.
We’ve been working with the bank and trying to get their assistance to homeowners, so that they’re in a position to get the foreclosure done.
Reporter#4FourLive: For some, the bank is their only source of help.
They say they have no other option but to pay for it.
The loan is a very expensive process.
So the banks ability to help them with that is what we’re doing.
Reporter:”I think you should be able,” said John, a homeowner in Miami.
“I’m not getting paid anything.
They can do it.
It’s my money.
They owe me nothing.
And so it’s really up to you if you’re going to go through with this. “
We don’t want to pay this.
And so it’s really up to you if you’re going to go through with this.
It could end up costing us our home.”
It’s the only option the bank has, and there are no other options.
“You should not be going through this process,” said Jim.
“They are taking advantage of our situation.
So we should be taking it to the bank to try and help.”
The bank says it will continue to provide assistance to all homeowners and help other mortgage holders in the region.
The housing authority says they have not received any complaints about the program.
Reporter, FourFour: The bank and the housing authority have reached a settlement, and FourFour will continue providing assistance to people who need help.
In Miami Beach, the city has helped more than 200 homeowners in foreclosure and said it is still accepting requests.
We need to get to a point where we can get a loan approved, and then get out of that, said Chris.
Reporter Jim, how do you feel about this situation?
“I do feel like it’s unfair to them,” said Joanne.
“It’s not like they paid me $200,000.
They gave me $300,000 and I had to pay $300 a month for my rent, and that’s how much I’m paying now.”
Reporter: When the city was asked about the situation, Mayor Stephanie Miner said, “We can’t get a mortgage loan because it’s an emergency.
We’re in an emergency.”