A federally-funded program to help homeowners avoid foreclosure is now available state-wide.
The program, which first launched in October in 17 counties, allows eligible homeowners to receive up to $24,000 or 24 months of mortgage payments while they seek other employment or participate in job training programs.
In high unemployment counties, the maximum assistance is $36,000 or 36 months.
North Carolina was one of five states that received money from a $600 million aid pool designed to prevent foreclosures in states plagued by high unemployment.
North Carolina is spending about $115 million for the initial phase of the new program, which is based on a previous state-funded effort that provides mortgage payment help.
The program is designed to help those who have gotten behind on their mortgage payment through no fault of their own.