Category: Reverse Mortgage Info

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.

Can I Sell A Home With An Existing Reverse Mortgage

Typically when a senior takes out a reverse mortgage loan on a home, they intend to age there.  But on occasion and reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradofor various reasons, the homeowners wants to or needs to sell the home before the loan comes due and payable.  So, what now?

Although this is an important factor, it’s not nearly as daunting as it sounds.  Here’s where to start:

Step 1.) Locate your reverse mortgage loan documents and find any pertinent information regarding the sale of the home.  It will vary from lender to lender.  Most (but not all) reverse mortgage loans are FHA insured.  This means even if you owe more on the loan than the home is worth, you will never owe more than the home sells for.

Consult with a real estate or elder law attorney if you have questions or concerns.

Step 2.)  Contact the reverse mortgage lender to get a payoff quote.  This combined with a home appraisal will give you a good idea of what the sale will look like and what amount of funds you could potentially walk away with.

Step 3.)  Find a real estate agent.  When seeking out an agent, be sure to provide your reverse mortgage loan information up front and look for someone who has experience with such a sale.

Step 4.)  Prepare the home for sale.  From here, everything is similar to any home sale.  You want to prep the home, keep it clean for showings, update anything you may need, etc.

Step 5.)  Sell the home, pay off the reverse mortgage loan (consult with a real estate or elder law attorney if you have questions when paying off the loan), then reap the rewards.  Congrats!
Reverse mortgages are available to seniors 62 and over all over Colorado.  To learn more, contact a reputable reverse mortgage lender.

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.

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster colorado

What Does it Mean When a Reverse Mortgage is FHA Insured?

If you’ve taken the time to learn even a little bit about a reverse mortgage, it’s likely you’ve heard the term “FHA insured” at least a couple of times.  But what exactly does it mean?

Homeowners 62 and over, with significant equity in their home, may be eligible for a reverse mortgage.  These loans are typically insured by the FHA and provide non-taxable income to the borrowers based on the available equity in the home.  The more equity and the older the borrower, the more funds available.  The funds can be accessed via a line of credit, monthly installments, a lump sum, and even can be wrapped into the purchase of a new home.  The borrower can always use the funds for whatever they deem fit.

The homeowner will live mortgage payment free for as long as they remain in the home, although they will have a few financial obligations related to the house such as homeowners insurance, property taxes, utilities, and HOA fees.  As long as the borrowers keeps current on these few obligations, they cannot be evicted from the home or made to repay the loan.  The loan comes due once the last borrower has left the home for 12 consecutive months or passes away.  At this time the loan will be due and payable with time allotted to allow for transitions.  This is where the FHA insurance comes in.

In the case of a death, the home with pass onto the heirs.  At this time they have two options – 1) Pay off the loan and keep the home (often through life insurance or sale of another asset), or 2) Sell the home.

In the scenario of loan repayment the heirs will never have to repay any more than the home is appraised for.  They will only be required to pay 95% of the appraised home value or the full amount of the loan, whichever is less.  Any amount due on the loan above the appraised amount will be covered by the FHA insurance and no one will be held liable.

In the case of a home sale, the heirs will never be required to pay more on the loan than the home sells for as long as the sale price is at least 95% of the appraised value.  Any remaining balance will be covered by the FHA insurance.  On the other hand, if the home sells for more than the loan balance, the heirs will keep any remaining funds.   This is especially important as over the years the housing market shifts.

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.

reverse mortgage colorado fort collins loveland windsor greeley berthoud

How to Delay Social Security with a Reverse Mortgage

When planning for retirement, there will no doubt be a discussion about when a retiree should start taking their Social Security benefits.

There are perks to delaying, for example Social Security benefits stand to increase as much as 7-8% per year if you don’t apply until age 70.  But many seniors need this income.  With the ability to apply for a reverse mortgage at the age of 62, and current low interest rates, retirees stand to actually make gains by using a reverse mortgage to supplement while delaying benefits.

When approved for a reverse mortgage, the borrower can choose from a variety of ways to access the funds.  It could be a monthly installment, a lump sum, or even a line of credit that in itself stands to grow over time.

This is a creative way to use the hard earned equity in your home to your benefit.  A well educated financial advisor would easily be able to help you decide if this is a good option.  Reverse mortgages are available to seniors 62 and over, including married couples, with an approved type of home.  The borrower will always retain the title to the home and reverse mortgages are insured by the FHA.

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.

What To Look For In A Reverse Mortgage Lender

reverse mortgage colorado loveland fort collins longmont greeley boulderFor many retirees, a reverse mortgage is a feasible option to living the golden years they always dreamed of, or for others it may be a path to living within a budget without the constraints and worry of excessive financial distress.  In order to qualify for a reverse mortgage, the individual must own their home, be at least 62 years old, and have some equity in the home.  In general, the older the borrower (or the youngest borrower in the case of married couples) and the more valuable the home, the more reverse mortgage funds will be available.  Other factors also come into play, such as: the appraised home value, interest rates, and the amount of equity in the home.  Once a basic understanding of how a reverse mortgage works, the next step is finding a lender.

Where to find a lender?

Reverse mortgages are marketed in every possible way.  Television, radio, mailers, internet, etc.  Although not all of these methods ensure trouble, some of them can be scams.  When seeking a reverse mortgage lender, it’s important to speak with people you trust.  Ask around at your bank or financial institution.  Speak with a financial or retirement adviser.  Talk with neighbors or friends who have utilized a reverse mortgage.  Seek information from the local Chamber of Commerce or Senior Centers.   Utilize other resources that may be available in your community.

What to look for in a reverse mortgage lender?

Working with a reputable reverse mortgage lender is critical.  It can be risky to get involved with a lender who does not offer all the details or who is just looking to make a “quick sell”.   A reputable lender will have strong connections in the community, working closely with a network of professional organizations.

Accreditation and ratings?

Seek out a lender that is a member of the National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association (NRMLA).  Members of the NRMLA must conform to a strict code of lending ethic.  Look for a lender that is affiliated with the  Better Business Bureau (BBB), where you can also learn of any complaints against the company.

Follow your gut.

When it comes down to it, always follow your gut.  Just because a lender may meet all this criteria doesn’t mean they will be right for you.  If you do not feel comfortable or feel your questions are not being adequately answered, there is nothing wrong with seeking out a different lender.

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.