Mortgage Brokers Help With Hurricane Recovery

The Mississippi Association of Mortgage Brokers usually helps families finance their dream home. But now, the brokers are determined to help storm victims reclaim their homes from the damage caused by Katrina.

They've adopted a family in Waveland.

The brokers normally deal with interest rates and home loans. But this week, they've put aside the business suits for T-shirts and blue jeans; tearing down soggy sheet rock in a hurricane damaged home.

"We wanted to come down and adopt a family and help them do their reconstruction and clean up. And so we adopted Toni and Buddy Maloney. So, we are down here gutting the house and taking the muddy carpet out," said Vickie Graves, who's president of the Mississippi Association of Mortgage Brokers.

The brokers are accustomed to helping people finance a dream home. This time, they'll help the owners reclaim their dream. Thad McIntyre's mother and step father own the home.

"All the insulation from the ceiling had come down over everything. We had to rummage through and try and find pieces of furniture. It was very difficult to come here and see a property like this that we built from scratch, totally destroyed by nature," he said.

This home sits on a series of interconnected ponds. When Katrina blew through on August 9th, she pushed all that water toward the house. Once inside, the water reached a level high overhead, almost hitting the top of the 15 foot high ceiling in the living room.

The brokers-turned-laborers are quickly making progress. Once the house is gutted the group also plans to help with the rebuilding.

They're determined to make the house a home once again.

"And so to be able to clean out and for a family to start from the very beginning, it's pretty exciting for us," said Graves.