Yuma, Arizona (NAPSI) - Take a look around your neighborhood: For every 14 houses you see, data suggests that at least one homeowner is behind on his or her mortgage payments. The good news is that there is a free government program, Making Home Affordable®, designed to help people avoid foreclosure.

The U.S. Department of the Treasury, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and the Ad Council are collaborating to raise awareness of tools and resources available from the Making Home Affordable® program through a national multimedia public service advertising (PSA) campaign.

The campaign urges homeowners with mortgage trouble to not give up hope and to reach out to learn about free federal resources available to help them avoid foreclosure. Resources available through the Making Home Affordable® program are more accessible than ever with broadened eligibility criteria. Now, previously ineligible homeowners with rental properties or those facing a negative change in their finances may qualify for assistance. Additionally, to help even more families avoid foreclosure, the Making Home Affordable® program has been extended through December 2013.

Ad Council research shows that many struggling homeowners feel confused about where to turn for help and whom to trust. The English and Spanish-language PSAs created by top advertising agency Schafer Condon Carter direct homeowners to call (888) 995-HOPE (4673) for free access to HUD-approved housing experts, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and visit the website www.MakingHomeAffordable.gov, which helps homeowners address mortgage concerns.

“While communities across the country are beginning to recover from an unprecedented housing crisis, too many families are still struggling with their mortgage payments and are unsure of where to turn for help,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Domestic Finance, Mary Miller. “Millions of homeowners have gotten help to avoid foreclosure. We want to make sure struggling homeowners know today that there are free government resources available to help homeowners avoid foreclosure.”

“As the housing market continues to strengthen and stabilize, it is more important than ever that we educate Americans about the legitimate resources and options available to them, such as one-on-one counseling services with HUD-approved housing agencies,” said FHA Acting Commissioner Carol Galante. “Thanks to this and other outreach efforts, more families will be able to take advantage of the free government services and receive unbiased advice from trained experts they can trust.”

“We know that there are still millions of families across the nation facing the threat of home foreclosure,” said Peggy Conlon, president and CEO of the Ad Council. “We hope to be able to reach these Americans with a message of hope and inspire them to get the help they need.”

Free government resources available at MakingHomeAffordable.gov can help you avoid foreclosure.