Showing posts with label reverse mortgage lenders. Show all posts
Showing posts with label reverse mortgage lenders. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

What is a Reverse Mortgage?

You heard the term reverse mortgage but do you really know what it is? A reverse mortgage is just an equity loan secured by your home, which is designed to defer mortgage interest. 

In 1989, the Federal Housing Administration created a product called the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage(HECM). This was the beginning of reverse mortgages. Rules and regulations from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development(HUD) insure lenders follow strict rules and regulations. FHA and HUD reverse mortgages protect consumers and help you to search for FHA approved lenders.

With a regular mortgage, the homeowner makes monthly payments over a specific period of time, usually 30 years. With a reverse mortgage the interest is not due till the loan reaches maturity. As the homeowner, your responsibility is to reside in the home while paying the property taxes and insurance. You never make a payment on the money you have borrowed. 

You still own your home

You may still reside in your home during the term as long as you continue to pay taxes and insurance. Every month you will receive a monthly statement which will outline all interest charges and balance information. What you won't find on the statement is a coupon to make a payment, because none is due.

What are the qualifications?

If you are a U.S. citizen and a permanent resident, are 62 years or older, and have substantial equity in your home, you qualify. The loan amount you qualify for depends on your age, interest rates, and the homes value. There are no income requirements or credit scores involved. All you have to do is continue to live in the loan.

Do I Have the Option to Pay the Loan Back?

If you want you can make voluntary repayments of the interest in full or in part you can, without penalty. Plus, the interest you pay is deductible just like with a regular mortgage. You also can pay off the entire loan at any time with cash, by refinancing or by selling the home. 

How is the Loan Repaid?

The reverse mortgage is not due until the owner passes away or the property is not occupied. Upon passing away the heirs have time to sell the house or refinance it to pay back the balance of the loan. Usually you have up to a year to do this. If your heirs do not act, the reverse mortgage lender moves to foreclose on the property. If the sale of the property does not provide ample funds to satisfy the reverse mortgage, the mortgage insurance fund will make up the difference. Paying for this insurance is part of the costs of a reverse mortgage.


  • You can stay in your home and not worry about making mortgage payments.
  • You have money to live on and spend on retirement activities.
  • Cash you receive from the mortgage is not considered income and not taxable.


  • Reverse mortgages are not for living in your home for a short, to be financially feasible you need to stay in your home for an extended period of years.
  • You still are responsible for taxes and insurance, these may not be affordable on a retirement budget.
  • Fees and insurance, depending on the state you reside can be high. Check before you proceed with a reverse mortgage.
  • Cash proceeds can impact eligibility for those receiving "needs" based state and local assistance.

As with any financial product involving large amounts of money and contracts it benefits you to seek out a reputable lenders. You should compare offers from multiple banks and brokers. Remember all reverse mortgages carry the same protections and laws established by the FHA. There is only one HECM so make sure you don't pay extra fees and gotchas.

Source: ALLRMC.COM "Reverse Mortgages Explained in Plain English"

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Are You Thinking About A Reverse Mortgage? You May Want To Think Twice!

We all have felt the hit of the recent financial recession and are trying to recover now. Unfortunately however, many were at the ripe age of retirement or just before as the recession really took hold. This lead to many of our elderly community being overwhelmed with incredible amounts of debt! 

Debt that, can really seem impossible to pay off once you reach a retirement age. Some decided to work for as long as they could to try and recoup losses while others simply retired and planned to cross the bridges as they came. As bridges start to show themselves, a reverse mortgage starts to seem like a great vehicle for crossing a bridge of financial struggles. 

What Is A Reverse Mortgage

A reverse mortgage is just like a standard mortgage. So, to understand the reverse, you must understand the regular. In a regular mortgage, you make payments. As you make payments, you increase the equity in your home. Once all payments are made in full, the home becomes your property. During the course of a reverse mortgage, you don't make payments, the lender makes them to you. 

The payments can be made monthly or in one lump sum and are based off of the equity you've earned making your mortgage payments. However, if you would like to make a payment to increase your credit line, you are more than welcome to do so without penalty. So, this really seems like the revolving credit line of your dreams. No mortgage payment, lenders pay you, you can really pay down some debts! 

So, Why Would You Want To Think Twice

While you still live in your home, the reverse mortgage seems like the greatest thing in the world. But, I'm sure that you have family. Family that you intend on leaving something behind for. Chances are, your children were raised in the house that you are thinking about a reverse mortgage for. You just might want to leave that to them. However, when you pass or leave the home, the debt will become due. 

This means that if your children or other family that you give your home to wants to keep it, they will have to pay for the equity that was removed through the reverse mortgage. The truth is, if a home was left to me under these conditions, chances are, I couldn't go off on a whim and come up with $30,000.00, $50,000.00 or $100,000.00! Therefore, if you plan to give your home to your children when you pass, you may want to think twice about this option! 

Remember, Reverse Mortgages Aren't Your Only Option

Debt can be incredibly overwhelming, even scary in some cases. I know, I've experienced it! But, there is no reason to jump at your first option for debt relief. Who knows, a reverse mortgage might just be right for you. But, always remember that if you decide it's not, there are always other options. I have seen credit card hardship programs, payment plans and balance transfer credit cards really help people in bad financial positions. Before choosing any debt relief option, do a bit of research and make sure that it is the option that best fits your unique financial position.

About The Author – Joshua Rodriguez
This article was written by Joshua Rodriguez, proud owner of CNA Finance and avid personal finance journalist. Join the conversation about this article on facebook!

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