Author: janjordan

Tips To Prepare Your Home For A Reverse Mortgage Appraisal

The Reverse Mortgage Appraisal Fort Collins Loveland Longmont Greeley ColoradoAfter you fill out the application for a reverse mortgage, with the help of a trusted and reputable reverse mortgage specialist, an appraisal of your home needs to be conducted.

This can be a nervous moment to have a stranger come into the home you have enjoyed for many years for the purpose of evaluating it. Since you may not know what to expect you might even wonder if they are going to ask questions you cannot answer, or notice the cleanliness of the refrigerator.

There are many steps you can take before the appraiser comes to your home. IF you take a little time the value will increase and the appraiser will only have to make one visit instead of numerous ones because you had work to do.

Here is a list of the types of questions to honestly ask yourself and if your answer to any of them is yes, fix it before they arrive.

• Do you have exposed electrical wires? Or faulty electrical?

• Are there staircases or decks without rails or in poor condition?

• How is your paint looking? Inside AND outside.

• Do you have any water leaks?

• What is the status of your roof, are there any leaks or damage?

The better shape your home is in when the appraiser comes, the better the listed value will be and the more money will be in your pocket from your reverse mortgage loan.

Maybe you are looking for a loan for the sake of repairs, as a senior this kind of help is possible for you just ask your lender for more information so the focus of the loan is included.

Reverse mortgage is an individualized, specialized loan for those 62 and older that allows seniors to tap into the equity of their home while living mortgage and loan payment free.  The funds can be accessed via a lump sum, line of credit, monthly installments, or even to purchase a home

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, Longmont, Boulder and other Front Range areas of Colorado.  Click here to contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

What To Expect When Getting A Reverse Mortgage Home Appraisal

Getting assessments on just about anything can seem laborious or tedious, who wants to have something close to them looked at with a magnifying glass? But appraisals for reverse mortgage loans are not only very helpful for everyone involved, they’re required by the lender.  Part of what determines the amount of funding available from a reverse mortgage is the appraised value of the home.  Luckily the process is very simple.

First, after talking with a reputable reverse mortgage specialist, you will submit your application. The specialist or lender will be the one to contact an appraiser who will in turn contact you to set up a time for them to look at your home.

The procedure is standard and involves three steps, the inspection, the research, and the report.

Inspection:

The appraiser will walk through your home with you, he or she might take photographs. It will document features that add value to your home. If the appraiser takes a picture of something in need of repair it lets you know that it matters and gives you a chance to fix it.

Research:

Once the walk through is done, the appraiser’s work continues as they research factors that influence the value they place on your home. Home sales in your area are one area of research. Others include multiple listing services, tax assessor’s records and public records come into play. Anything that will help to give the present value will be taken into account.

The Official Report:

This is the synthesis of the appraiser’s home visit and all the research. The report is used with your loan request. If photographs were taken, they will be included as well.

The appraiser gives this report to the lender who will give you a copy and an updated reverse mortgage figures taking into account the new information.

There are simple things you can do before the appraiser gets to your home to help your loan request. Read my article about preparing your home for an appraisal by clicking here.

Reverse mortgage is an individualized, specialized loan for those 62 and older that allows seniors to tap into the equity of their home while living mortgage and loan payment free.  The funds can be accessed via a lump sum, line of credit, monthly installments, or even to purchase a home. If you are planning ahead let your specialist guide you in the many scenarios that are possible and the two of you can think creatively about your needs and desires.

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, Longmont, Dacono, Erie, Boulder and other Front Range areas of Colorado.  Click here to contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

How A Reverse Mortgage Can Help You Age At Home

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoAs you grow older your needs of body, mind and heart change, sometimes requiring assistance. Have you considered a reverse mortgage to help you with this assistance to stay in your home, instead of moving where that is provided like assisted living or nursing home?

This is a very possible option for those who wish to remain in the place where family memories are held, and familiar rooms hold personal furniture and mementos marking the years.

The average resident of a nursing home lives about four months, so short a time for this cherished time of life. With a little investigation by you, or by your loved ones, a number of other options could prove to be the best choice.

For one, home health care has grown exponentially over the years. Certified aides, care givers and nurses can come to you to meet your defined needs. Add in a bit of tender loving care from family and friends to balance home care, doctor’s appointments, therapy and all the rest and a second option presents itself. In addition to the one on one focus both these options provide are an endless stream of senior services such as meals on wheels, senior centers, day care assistance and many more falling under the umbrellas of social services.

A Reverse Mortgage could be an easy way to create the lifestyle you want, meeting your changing needs, right within your own home!

The first step would be to create a plan for your life of retirement.  Set your vision for the future, naming long term health care providers, establishing the roles of family members, look at your resources (or seek professional counsel to assess costs of living for years to come,) and be honest about what needs you have now, and what needs you want to provide for in the future. Include the unexpected in your assessment so the stress of change is not compounded by lack of resources.

Once you make your plan, discuss it with all involved. If it makes sense include those helping you in your will so they can provide a line of continuity from their care for you, to the care of your estate and affairs once you pass.

Review your plan yearly so you have the security and freedom to change as you change. A reverse mortgage can not only provide you by covering your monthly expenses as you live mortgage payment free, but can also be included in the planning process increasing your options as you see how much you will receive from the equity of your home.

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Lupton, Dacono, Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, Longmont, Boulder and other Front Range areas of Colorado, as well as the Cheyenne and Laramie communities of Wyoming.  Contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

What You Need to Know About Reverse Mortgage and Taxes

reverse mortgage loveland colorado fort collins longmont greeley boulderThere are many differences between a reverse mortgage and a traditional mortgage – and taxes are a big one.  Here’s a run down of what to expect come tax time if you have a reverse mortgage.

The Tax Liability Issue

Because any funds you receive from a reverse mortgage are essentially an advance on your home equity – equity you already own and have paid for, the IRS does not consider money received from a reverse mortgage as income, they consider it an advance, therefore it is not taxed as income.  This is the case regardless of how you receive the funds – whether monthly installments, a line of credit, or a lump sum, you will never pay income tax on this.

What About Deductions on Interest?

Here’s one situation where there is a stark difference between a traditional mortgage and a reverse mortgage.  With a traditional mortgage interest and fees paid are tax deductible every year they are paid.  This is still the case with a reverse mortgage, except in the scenario of a reverse mortgage the interest is not paid until the loan comes due, therefore it cannot be claimed as a deduction until this point.  The loan comes due if the borrowers sells the home, passes away, or permanently leaves the home.

Property Taxes

With a traditional mortgage, property taxes are often taken care of by an escrow service.  With a reverse mortgage the homeowner is 100% responsible for making sure these property taxes are kept up to date.  If there are financial concerns about the ongoing cost of property taxes, discuss this with your reverse mortgage specialist.  In the new financial assessment there are options to help set aside a portion of the funds to cover ongoing expenses such as property taxes and homeowner’s insurance.

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Erie, Firestone, Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, Longmont, Boulder and other Front Range areas of Colorado, as well as the Cheyenne and Laramie communities of Wyoming.  Contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Reverse Mortgage For Purchase – A Hidden Gem

reverse mortgage colorado fort collins lovelandNearly everyone is familiar with a Reverse Mortgage and many even know someone who has used one to increase cash flow or help them remain in their existing home.  But what many people don’t realize is that you can also use one to purchase a home.  This little known portion of the reverse mortgage program, called Reverse Mortgage (HECM) for Purchase, is a golden gem to many seniors who are looking to settle down somewhere other than their current home for retirement.  Whether looking to move closer to family, purchase a single level home, or move into a senior community, these homebuyers are able to purchase a home they often wouldn’t be able to afford otherwise while still eliminating mortgage payments – all in a single transaction.

To qualify, the borrower(s) must be 62 years or older, be purchasing an eligible property, have the required down payment, and meet the HECM financial assessment guidelines.  Eligible property types are single family residences, new construction where certificate of occupancy has been issued, HUD approved condos and townhomes. Allowable down payment sources include cash from savings or investments, proceeds from the sale of an existing home or asset, gifts. Funds that are borrowed such as a loan or credit cards are not allowed as a funding source.  The amount of the down payment varies depending on the age of the youngest borrowers and the cost of the new home.

Working with an educated real estate agent and reverse mortgage specialist will expedite the process, and in most cases in a Reverse Mortgage for Purchase does not take longer to complete than a typical home purchase with a traditional loan.

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, Longmont, Boulder and other Front Range areas of Colorado, as well as the Cheyenne and Laramie communities of Wyoming.  Contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

How Adult Children Can Help Their Parents With A Reverse Mortgage

reverse mortgage colorado fort collins loveland greeleyPerhaps your parents raised you in the home they are now ambling about. As you see them begin to slow, or have to jump on a plane every time they wish to see you, thoughts of helping them to have an easier time come across your mind. After all they deserve at this time of their life to relax, do what they wish to do, and be able to manage their health and their finances with comfort.

Considering a reverse mortgage is one good option. It gives more wiggle room to work with when balancing the growing needs of health, home, and retirement.

As you discuss the future and it’s possibilities, there are a few questions to ask yourself and everyone else involved.

First, do you or other siblings have concerns about inheritance and/or equity?  Your parents probably care that all of you feel you have received from them as they pass. While this discussion is not always easy, it is undeniably beneficial. Talking will give clarity, which in turn provides direction. It also gives everyone a chance to be heard.

Second, do you have financial resources to help your parents?  Health needs as we age are difficult to determine but it is important to build in a buffer for the unexpected.  The stress of aging is enough in and of itself, being able to take care of the costs should not have to be an additional worry for those that raised you.

Another good question that only your parents can answer is, ‘What are my parent’s wishes about staying in their home, especially if their medical needs grow?’ For some they are ready to let go of the home of their youth and family, wanting to change and simplify their lifestyle. For some being closer to you is the most important desire. And for some staying in their home as long as possible is the most important wish that could be fulfilled. Since the decision about reverse mortgage as a way to fulfill desires is a big one, looking toward the future and developing a plan will only benefit everyone – and ultimately make your parents’ happy.

Reverse mortgage is an individualized, specialized loan for those 62 and older that allows seniors to tap into the equity of their home while living mortgage and loan payment free.  The funds can be accessed via a lump sum, line of credit, monthly installments, or even to purchase a home. If you are planning ahead let your specialist guide you creatively to suit your needs and desires.

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, Longmont, Boulder and other Front Range areas of Colorado.  Contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

How Prepared Are You If Your Spouse Dies?

Regardless of age, losing a spouse is difficult – and the impending “business” that comes along with it doesn’t make it any easier.  This is why we should all ask ourselves at some point, “Am I prepared if my spouse dies?”.  There are so many various aspects to being “prepared”, and although I can’t help with many of them, I can help with some simple suggestions to making sure you aren’t stuck with unexpected questions.

It’s not uncommon in marriages or partnered relationships for each spouse to take care of different bookkeeping tasks.  For example, it’s very common for the husband to manage retirements funds – pensions, IRA’s, etc.  While the wife may handle personal address books or paying bills.  Take a minute and think about this?  Not only what  you may not know, but what your spouse may not know.

Here are some suggestions to putting this information in order:

• Begin by making a list over a week or two, and ideally an entire month.  Make note of what “business” you do.  How many passwords did you need online?  How many account numbers on the phone?  What about PINs?  The results may surprise you.  In today’s high tech yet overly scammed world, everything is secured under lock and key.

•  Although it is best if both spouses can contribute to this exercise it is not a requirement.  Either way, spend some time brainstorming together.  We often will remember things when discussing them with someone else.

• It’s important to make a physical list of this information, whether typed or handwritten.  What you shouldn’t do though is save this information online.  Hackers will seek data that includes account numbers, logins, and passwords and this could lead to compromising your accounts and even identity theft.  Even if you think it’s secure, there really is little guarantee that is true.  Keeping this list with your most important documents – such as birth certificates, titles to homes and vehicles, etc – is going to be your safest bet, but make sure both spouses know where to find it.

What to include on your list:

Name and phone number of company, account numbers and any PINs associated.  If using online management of account, include website URLs of where to login, login name and password, and any auto pay information.  If there are specific people you work with at these companies, include their names.

If only one spouse is listed on the account, make an effort to add the other one.  I recently witnessed an elderly woman at the DMV who was unable to renew her driver’s license because all the mail that came to the home was in her husband’s name.  This is more common than many people realize – and often they don’t even know until they’re caught in jam.

• Home loan
• Home insurance
• Car loan
• Car insurance policies
• Health insurance policies
• Life insurance policies
• Bank accounts
• Credit card accounts
• Pension, IRA, annuities, etc
• Utilities – electric, water, gas, phone, trash
• Facebook, LinkedIn, etc
• Contact information for family and friends
• Contact information of bankers, retirement or financial planners, loan officers
• Contact information for doctors, dentists, pharmacies, veterinarians, etc (and a little info about what each one is for)

These lists will vary from person to person, so make sure to add your own ideas.  Also be sure to update it when anything changes or is added – because hopefully you won’t need it for quite a few more years!

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, Longmont, Boulder and other Front Range areas of Colorado, as well as the Cheyenne and Laramie communities of Wyoming.  Contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Understanding Identity Theft

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoWhat is Identity Theft?

According to the 1998 Identity Theft and Assumption Deterrence Act identity theft is when someone “knowingly transfers or uses, without lawful authority, a means of identification of another person with the intent to commit, or to aid or abet, any unlawful activity that constitutes a violation of federal law, or that constitutes a felony under any applicable state or local law.”

The three most common types of identity theft are:

  • Financial identity theft (using another’s identity to obtain credit, goods and services)
  • Identity cloning (using another’s information to assume his or her identity in daily life)
  • Medical identity theft (using another’s identity to obtain medical care or drugs)

How does Identity Theft happen?

In today’s technology driven society, protecting your identity is more important than ever.  But don’t assume identity theft only happens online.  It can happen anywhere, anytime.  Someone could be watching over your shoulder as you fill out a form at your doctor’s office.  Another individual could be rummaging through your trash, hoping to find a tossed out credit card offer.  Your email program’s spam filter may not be blocking those emails from Phishing websites.  There are many ways to fall victim to identity theft, arming yourself with facts and prevention is key to protection.

How do I protect myself from Identity Theft?

  • Be aware of your surroundings.  When filling out forms that include private information, take a seat away from others when possible. Never throw out forms or paperwork that may have your personal information on them, always take these home with you and dispose of them properly.
  • Don’t toss out credit card offers or other junk mail that pertains to obtaining credit.  In addition, any other private information you have – bills, car registration, insurance documents, bank statements – should always be disposed of properly and NEVER put out with your household trash.  These items should be shredded or burned.  In addition, limiting the amount of junk mail you receive by “opting out” of mail distribution lists can vastly decrease your risk.  Opt out by calling 1-888-5-OPTOUT.
  • Never follow links to bank accounts, credit accounts, PayPal accounts, etc from an email.  “Phishing” emails may appear as a completely legitimate email from your bank or credit card company, warning you of unauthorized transactions or other alarming information.  These emails will include links that take you to a website that looks identical to your bank’s – but it’s not.  Once you enter your information into this “Phishing” site, you have given some of your most valuable financial information to a con-artist.  ALWAYS access your bank and credit accounts by entering their web address into your web browser, NEVER through a link.  Reputable companies will not contact you via email about such important matters.
  • Don’t respond to emails offering money in exchange for “helping” an individual transfer money into the country.  These are always scams and have proven to be very dangerous.
  • Password protect your computer and your wireless internet. Use firewalls and virus protection software.
  • Never give personal information to telephone solicitors or door to door solicitors.  Do not give out personal information over the phone unless you placed the call yourself.
  • Lock your car.  Identity theft via “glove compartment” information is on the rise.  Keeping your car locked can ensure you are not an easy target.
  • Don’t carry your Social Security card in your wallet or purse.  Purge expired credit cards, insurance cards, and ID’s regularly.  Keep these items at home in a safe place.
  • If you do not have a locking mailbox, do not mail payments using your mailbox.  Always take the mail directly to the post office.

What do I do if think I’ve been targeted?

Contact the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-IDTHEFT or www.ftc.gov

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, and Front Range areas of Colorado.  Click here to contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Considering Options: Nursing Home vs Reverse Mortgage

reverse mortgage colorado fort collins loveland greeleyIn our society, the elderly and nursing homes go hand in hand.  But when speaking with elderly people, one of their biggest fears is being placed into a nursing home.  Who can blame them?  According to National Center on Elder abuse, one study interviewing 2,000 nursing home residents reported that 44% said they had been abused and 95% said they had been neglected or seen another resident neglected.  When considering the psyche of an older senior, nursing homes or convalescent homes mean “end of life”.   Often times adult children don’t know a better solution as the needs of the parents increase, the home is no longer suited for their parent, and/or they do not have the funds or the time for in home care.   Reverse mortgages have been helping seniors in need for years.  But now as retirement planners are realizing the benefit the can offer long term, they are now being used more proactively.

Reverse mortgage is a great method to finance in-home care to avoid nursing homes, pay for medical care, and even fund home modifications.  For seniors who are looking to situate long term and prepare to live their golden years in their own home, a move to a new residence closer to family or more suited for senior life may be in order.  The reverse mortgage for purchase is perfect option for these situations.  Reverse mortgage for purchase allows the purchase of a different residence using a reverse mortgage while still employing the perks of a traditional reverse mortgage – living mortgage payment free.  In addition, reverse mortgages do not affect social security, pensions, or medicare.

Both reverse mortgage for purchase and traditional reverse mortgage are available to seniors 62 and over.  The home must be the primary residence and it must be a HUD approved property type.

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, and Front Range areas of Colorado.  Click here to contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for yo

Exploring Reverse Mortgage and Divorce

Reverse Mortgage Loveland Fort Collins Denver Boulder Longmont Greeley ColoradoIt’s becoming more and more common for seniors to divorce after retirement.  This is happening for various reasons, but a big one is that retirement now last for decades versus only years, and many people are looking to make those golden years the best yet.

But senior divorces can get messy, as there are often many assets to sort out.  During divorce negotiations, a home is often one of these assets.  This home is possibly owned free and clear, or with a lot of equity.  For divorcees age 62 and over, a reverse mortgage can be used as a tool to help with settling this asset during divorce.  The great thing about reverse mortgage is it allows someone to stay in the home and live mortgage payment free, AND access funds from the equity.  Here are a couple scenarios in which reverse mortgage would be of benefit.

Scenario 1: When splitting the home asset, instead of selling the home, one party could be allowed to stay in the home and obtain a reverse mortgage, of which the other party receives the funds from.  This can be a win-win.  In cases like this, the financial settlement can even be wrapped into the loan if the divorce is final before the closing.  This would mean a reverse mortgage would be part of the divorce settlement discussion.  It is important to understand that the party that remains in the home will be responsible for certain obligations pertaining to the home, such as property taxes and homeowners insurance.

Scenario 2: Possibly you’re used to living off two incomes – whether it be from work, or social security and pensions.  Suddenly dropping down to one income can be devastating.  In cases like this getting the home in divorce proceedings can be a huge benefit, as once the divorce is final, a reverse mortgage could be obtained on the home.  The funds could come in monthly installments, a line of credit (that grows), or a lump sum.  In addition, if you wanted to sell the home and move, a reverse mortgage could be used to purchase the new home– and can even allow you seek homes that would otherwise not be in your price range.  The best part?  You will always live mortgage payment free.

If you are considering a divorce, or sifting through the process, don’t hesitate to contact me to further understand how reverse mortgage can help, and whether or not you qualify.

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Collins, Loveland, Greeley, and Front Range areas of Colorado.  Click here to contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.