A new principal reduction program in the state of Florida has been flooded with interest from underwater homeowners in the state.

Using funds from the federal government's Hardest Hit Fund, the new program represents the state's first attempt to reduce principal for underwater homeowners. Previous state-led attempts have focused on unemployed or underemployed.

The Orlando Sentinel describes the initial interest:

By 9 a.m. Thursday  -- just 24 hours after the state began taking applications for a principal-reduction program _ more than 12,000 Floridians with underwater mortgages applied for the aid.

The Florida Housing Finance Corp. will accept no more than 25,000 -- a number officials expect to reach this week.

The program was so popular, in fact, that the paper notes that applications on the state's official website actually crashed the server in the first 30 minutes the website was live.