While Christmas 2012 turned into New Year’s 2013, many families came together to celebrate the holidays. Adult children enjoyed spending time with their aging parents or relatives. Grandchildren and great-grandchildren had their cheeks pinched and were forced to eat spoiled left overs from the fridge (we’ve all been there, right?) For some spending time with family is an encouraging sign of many happy years to come…but for others, it can be a time that raises concern about health or finances and questions about how aging parents will continue to cope.
Concerns such as this are very common around the holidays. To better guide you in the right direction and ultimately make the best decision possible, here are some questions to ask yourself:
• Are they able to get around by him or herself? Are there stairs in the home?
• Is this person able to take medications without assistance? Is there a health concern that would require more regular supervision, such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s?
• Is your parent able to manage mortgage payments, home-owners insurance payments, and property taxes. Is the home outdated and in need of frequent repairs – such as a furnace, roofing, electricity?
• Where is this home located? Is it in close proximity to relatives, hospitals, etc? Or is it secluded and away from town?
• Is this person lonely? Has he or she suffered the loss of a spouse? Does he or she have a solid social group or close friends?
Based on your answers to these questions, aging in place may be an option. If financial strains exist surrounding the current mortgage, a reverse mortgage may be an option. Reverse mortgages allow homeowners age 62 and older to access equity in their home without concerns about income and credit. The homeowner retains the title and remains in the home. With a reverse mortgage homeowners can lessen the financial burden of mortgage repayment and can even receive their funds through a lump sum allowing for any necessary home repairs or improvements to be covered financially. All reverse mortgages are government guaranteed with an FHA backed loan and no repayment is due until the last borrower passes away or permanently leaves the home. At that time there are several options that include keeping the home in the family. If selling the current residence and moving into a new home is a more reasonable route, reverse mortgage may still be an option.
More information can be found specifically about how a reverse mortgage may affect adult children here. It is especially important to work with a reputable lender and watch our for scams if parents or loved ones are considering a reverse mortgage.
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.