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I-Team: City Pushing Homeowner Assistance Program | News

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I-Team: City Pushing Homeowner Assistance Program
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Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman presents Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto a check for $100,000.

LAS VEGAS -- A program designed to keep underwater Nevadans in their homes gets help from the city of Las Vegas.

The multistate mortgage settlement Nevada signed has the five major lending banks pledging $1.5 billion to help underwater homeowners.

The good news is that the banks have gone past their obligation and are still giving mortgage assistance, but it's unknown how long they'll help.

The city of Las Vegas kicked in $100,000 Thursday to help get the word out about the Home Again program.

The program is a one-stop phone bank that assigns case workers to homeowners needing mortgage help.

70-year-old Lola Orvik almost lost her Henderson duplex when she was let go from her job and couldn't reach anyone at her lender, Wells Fargo.

"You can't find somebody that will even listen to you and you lose your hope doing that," Orvik said.

She turned to the Home Again program and finally got some help.

"Thirty-seven days later, at 7:30 in the morning, I got the call saying, ‘We have reduced your loan to two percent and we have taken off $37,400,'" Orvik said.

Lending banks typically facilitate short sales, but in some cases let the homeowners refinance at a lower rate or reduce the amount owned on the loan.

"When we first entered into the settlement, I had estimated about $1.4, $1.5 billion coming into the state to help homeowners," Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said. "Right now, it's at about $1.8 billion and climbing."

Wells Fargo and Bank of America told the I-Team they have met their legal obligation to financially help Nevadans under the terms of the settlement, but will continue to do so for now.

The Home Again Nevada program released new numbers highlighting who's getting help. Nearly two-thirds are Latino with an average age of 54.

Single adult households are the leading category of people receiving help from the program.

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