Maria Casas was first put in touch with Sean Amman, a 95% disabled veteran, five years ago when he was searching for a real estate agent to help him find a rental property for his family of four. After retiring from the Marines, he relied on his family support plan to help with the transition to civilian life, but unfortunate circumstances forced him and his family to become homeless.
“From the very first day, Maria was there for me and my family. I knew from [the] moment we first met that her heart was in the right place,” shares Sean. “Her steadfast work ethic is beyond reproach and [she] sets a high standard for other real estate agents to emulate.”
It was an uphill battle that no other agent was willing to take on, but Maria happily rose to the occasion and began turning over every leaf, searching for a way to get Sean and his family out of a hotel room and into a rental. First, that meant helping him sustain a job by getting in contact with Volunteers of America, a non-profit organization that helps individuals rebuild their lives. VOA was willing to provide up to 6 months paid lease, so Maria began the hunt for a landlord who was willing to take a chance on a less than perfect applicant.
“I finally found a suitable rental in Anaheim Hills, but the landlord was hesitant and required a 12-month lease, 9 months paid upfront,” explains Maria. She set out again making calls until VOA agreed to pay 9 months of rent upfront as long as Sean met all their requirements, which Maria would see to that he would. “I assured the landlord that if he lost his job or didn’t meet the VOA’s requirements, I would personally pay for his rent. She finally agreed and we got a one-year lease.”
Maria kept in touch to ensure Sean met all the requirements and got back on his feet. There wasn’t a Marine Corps Birthday or a Veteran’s Day without a call or a text from her to say Semper Fi and thank you for your service. Born in communist Cuba, Maria never takes freedom for granted, fueling her deep respect and appreciation for the veterans who fight to protect that right. “I have a passion for helping veterans. But the truth is that I provide the same level of service to every home buyer and seller, and I’m committed to my clients’ dream of homeownership.”
Even though Sean didn’t believe it at first, Maria assured him that one day, if he stayed focused and saved enough money, he could be a homeowner and finally have a place he could call “home”. It might take some time, but it can happen.
For Sean, all it took was five years – and plenty of encouragement from Maria – and he was ready. She put him in touch with Cole David from Homeowner’s First Mortgage who was instrumental to the process, helping secure a VA loan. “Even though Maria is a professional at what she does, I felt like I was working with a true friend. She has an unwavering dedication and commitment to military veterans and their families and if she could help them for free, I know she would because that is the type of person she is,” shared Sean. “Maria is the type who goes above and beyond, and I can honestly say she is my hero. I highly recommend her and her team at First Team Real Estate with enthusiasm.”
Maria calls it a Cinderella story, but she’s too humble to take credit as the fairy godmother. “I’m not a miracle worker, just a dedicated worker. Sean was the one who kept the hope alive and committed to making his dream a reality; I was just there to remind him that he could,” explains Maria. “I’m so proud of him for keeping his dream of homeownership alive, and for his dedication and focus. So many doors were closed to him, but we remained persistent, and I didn’t let him lose hope. Sean says I’m his hero, but the truth is that he is mine. I am the blessed one to have been a part of his journey.”
For more information on Maria and her exceptional real estate services, visit mariacasas.firstteam.com or contact her directly at (714) 402-6047.