Homeowners facing foreclosure get bank invite for help

Bank of America sets up loan modification workshop

TAMPA - The American Dream means different things to different people. For many, it means owning their own home.

"We moved up to Winter Haven, purchased a home -- our dream home," said Frank Banos.

But for the last year, the 30-year old who moved to Tampa Bay from Miami watched his dream slowly slip away. His says his grip loosened after he hurt his back and lost his job.

He and his wife haven't made a mortgage payment in a year.

"We're just trying to make it through with one income, trying to make everything work out," he said.

Banos is an assistant pastor and he says God has guided him during these difficult times. But today he's looking for help from Bank of America.  And so are thousands of others at the Tampa Convention Center.

"The hardship can be a number of things-- a divorce, medical, loss of job, new job, but not as much money," said Phillipa Ashby, Bank of America spokesperson.

Bank of America says it invited 30,000 homeowners facing foreclosure to sit down and work toward a loan modification. Ashby says they expect around 2,000 to show.  Out of those, around 30 percent of customers will receive a loan-modification decision.

Banos is hoping that he will be one of them.

"These are changing times and they're difficult times for everybody. Nobody knows which is going to be the way out or how is it we're going to get to the end goal, but there's always a way out. There's always a light," he explained.

And his American Dream is still in sight. He and his wife are expecting their first baby, a boy, in a few months.

The bank's loan modification open house will continue through Saturday.

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