October 12, 2010

Homeowner makes sign visible from sky in foreclosure fight

THE ACREAGE, Fla. - Juan Guzman has a large, lawn-wide sign in his front yard labeled 'JP Morgan Chase help.' It's his last hope to save his dream home. The Acreage man built his house in 2007 but couldn't handle the mortgage payment of $3,600 a month. He said he tried negotiating a lower loan from his bank but it wouldn't budge. Last year Guzman became unemployed and now his house is in foreclosure. Talking about his sign, Guzman said, "Trying to save my house, my family and my savings, life savings."

Guzman said his sign on his 82nd Lane home can be seen from an airplane.

He hopes to negotiate with his bank again because he is now employed.

"We are all Americans and we should be helping each other. You banks, you already got the help from the government, so its time to show up," Guzman said.

Guzman's plea for help comes when some banks, including JP Morgan Chase, are temporarily stopping the foreclosure process. Guzman says he's putting up his sign for those who don't want to speak out. "There's a lot of people like me that are not putting signs like that out."

Guzman's neighbors have seen the sign in his front yard. And at least one living down the road is dealing with some home loan issues of his own. Fernando Cujar's home is almost finished. He says his bank won't switch his home construction loan to a regular home loan. He says he needs the switch to get a few more thousand dollars to finish the house.

"The banks, they don't understand that. They don't have the human part of the situation," Cujar says.

Still, Cujar feels inspired by Guzman's sign. "He's been fighting so much. He's a tough fighter, you know?"

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