When Melanie Jasgur heard the news that a Los Angeles Fire Department firefighter had been killed in a training exercise, her mind flashed to her own family. First, to her husband who is also a firefighter and had worked alongside Kelly Wong. Then, to her grandfather, another hero in a line of firefighters in her family that stretches back to the 1940s.
“My grandfather was a LAFD fireman and inspector and when he passed away and my grandmother was in a bind with her bills and his pension, I will never forget how the Widows, Orphans & Disabled Firemen’s Fund went above and beyond to help get things going quickly,” Melanie said.
Partnering with Homes for Heroes to help out our Los Angeles firefighter families
Since Melanie knew from personal experience what a donation could mean to Wong’s family in the wake of his passing, she picked up the phone and called another charity – the Homes for Heroes Foundation. All the way over in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Lisa Welsh answered the call.
“I let her know what happened and some specifics about Kelly and his family and she MADE. IT. HAPPEN,” Melanie said. “I was blown away how fast everything was and how patient and aggressive Lisa was in getting the proper paperwork and contacts all lined up. The Homes for Heroes Foundation was able to donate $2,500 to Widows, Orphans & Disabled Firemen’s Fund, and another $2,500 to Friends of West LA, who is currently helping Kelly’s wife and son.”
Just a year earlier, Melanie had become a partner with Homes for Heroes, Inc., helping fire, law enforcement, teachers, military (active, reserves, and veterans) and healthcare workers get discounts on real estate services. When purchasing a home using a Home for Heroes affiliate as the agent, the eligible hero will receive a check after the sale for .7 percent of the purchase price. When selling a home, two extra forms can give a firefighter or other hero 25 percent off their agent’s fees.
Free money may seem too good to be true. In fact, Melanie says her clients are often skeptical, but she gladly reassures them, “There is no trick, no catch.”
Homes for Heroes, Inc. also offers discounts through partnered lenders, including possible credit toward closing costs or inspections. The business was started shortly after 9/11 to honor heroes across the country. The founders say it’s a way to say thank you for everything those workers do in their day jobs.
“Everyone I have met during my time as a partner has been supportive and amazing, and we all have the same goal: help the heroes,” Melanie said. “This is what makes the organization so phenomenal; every agent is committed to our heroes.”
Every partnered agent involved in a transaction with a hero is also donating to the Homes for Heroes Foundation to help someone in need. By July 2017, more than $25 million had been given back to firefighters, police officers, military members, healthcare workers and teachers on their real estate transactions.
A Meaningful Endeavor
Melanie says helping first responders find a home and then receive some extra cash they can use toward remodeling, furnishing, or even just buying groceries is an incredibly meaningful endeavor.
“Home is where I know every sound,” Melanie said. “Where I can watch my son grow and provide every ounce of love without judgment. Home is where life begins.”
To learn more about Melanie and these special hero programs, visit www.melaniejasgur.com
By Kate Cagle