Author: janjordan

Breaking Down The Costs Of A Reverse Mortgage In Colorado

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoOver the years reverse mortgages have shifted from being a choice of last resort to a creative and effective retirement planning tool. But still many who do not fully understand how reverse mortgages function will immediately bring up the perceived high cost of originating the loan. 

When all costs and variable options are considered, the opposite is true. Reverse mortgages actually cost considerably less when used as a source of income when compared to a portfolio or continuing to make payments from a portfolio after the age of 62. They also allow for financial freedom during some of the most important and valuable times in life.

Let’s start by looking at the actual costs. People are generally familiar with the costs that come with a traditional forward mortgage.  They do vary by state but consist of lender fees, third party fees like appraisals and title costs, origination fees, PMI and other miscellaneous costs. 

All of those are similar to a reverse mortgage with the exception of one difference: Mortgage Insurance Premium (MIP). This is a 2% fee based on the home value which goes to the FHA to insure the loan.

So, what does that insurance fee get you?  Why is it required? 

In the case of a traditional forward mortgage, insurance encourages the lender to lend to a borrower with a lower credit score or a small down payment so they are insured by the mortgage insurance company if there is a default.  Reverse MIP is much more powerful than forward PMI.  It not only insures the lender, but also the borrower AND the borrower’s heirs.  The reverse mortgage is a non-recourse loan that requires no payments until the borrower passes away or moves out of the home permanently.  That’s a solid guarantee.

As we’ve seen the past few years here in Colorado, home values continue to rise.  And just as we’ve seen before, that’s not guaranteed to continue forever. No one really knows what the home value will be next year or a decade from now. With this MIP, the borrower can live a very long life, and even if the home value plummets, if the balance on the loan is more than the value of the house, the MIP fund pays out the loss to the lender. The borrower, or the borrowers’ heirs, will never be responsible for any negative gap between loan balance and home value or any tax liability. 

Additionally, it’s very common that there is equity left over to pass on to the children because the home value has increased faster than the loan balance. In this case, even with the FHA insured loan, the heirs will always receive any equity in the home. 

Now how do you calculate these additional costs into a financial portfolio? Let’s look at some ways a reverse mortgage can be used.

The first factor is often also the biggest benefit – eliminating a mortgage payment so that cash flow is freed up to invest or use for other purposes.  Currently 44% of seniors reaching the age of 62 are still making a mortgage payment.  Most can afford it, but it needs to be asked if this is the best use for the money.

The second factor to consider is for those who are wealthy and have what one would consider “plenty of money” with homes that are already paid off. These people still have a cost of living, and often it is high.  The funds to maintain their lifestyles has to come from somewhere, whether passive or active income.  A reverse mortgage just acts as another source of income, and it is often the most efficient and cheapest income available to someone past 62.  Advisors can keep their senior clients fully invested in longer term portfolios while maintaining a cash reserve in the reverse mortgage line of credit. And that line of credit is guaranteed never to be cancelled or closed as long as the borrower meets their basic responsibilities such as paying homeowners insurance, taxes, and other basic fees such as HOA. It also requires no payments and is guaranteed to increase every year that goes by even if the house value does not.

And the third factor is quality of life.  As these individuals plan for the rest of their lives in a way only retirees do, the answer isn’t always calculated in dollars and cents, it’s calculated in time spent vacationing with grandchildren and creating memories with friends and spouses. This particular return on investment should never be overlooked.

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Lupton, Erie,  Lafayette, 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.

Older People Want To Age In Place – And They’re Not Too Worried About How They’ll Do It

A recent poll found that older adults want to age in place and they actually worry less about it as they get older. 

According to the Associated Press:

The older you are, the less you fret about aging in your own home or community.

That’s a key insight from a new Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll, which found that U.S. adults ages 65 or older feel much better prepared to “age in place” than those 50-64, who are mostly still in the final stretches of their working years.

The poll also documented greater insecurity around aging in place for older Black and Latino Americans, the likely result of a deep-rooted wealth gap that markedly favors white people.

Aging in one’s own home, or with family or a close friend, is a widely held aspiration, with 88% of adults 50 and older saying it’s their goal in an earlier AP-NORC poll.

The outlook among those 65 or older is upbeat, with nearly 8 in 10 saying they’re extremely or very prepared to stay in their current home as long as possible.

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster colorado

But doubts creep in for those ages 50-64. Among that group, the majority who rate themselves as extremely or very prepared shrinks to about 6 in 10, according to the poll.

This relatively younger group is especially likely to say their financial situation is the main reason they don’t feel very prepared to age in place. And they’re also more likely to feel anxious about being able to stay in their communities, get care from medical providers and receive backup from family members or close friends, the poll found.

Part of it may be due to fear of the unknown among people who’ve relied on a paycheck all their lives.

“When you’ve never done it before, and you are only going to do it once, you’re sort of flying by the seat of your pants,” said Leigh Gerstenberger, in his late 60s and retired from a career in financial services. “I spent a lot of time talking to people ahead of me in the journey,” says the Pittsburgh-area resident.

Also, people approaching their 60s may question if Social Security and Medicare will truly be there for them. Stacy Wiggins, an addiction medicine nurse who lives near Detroit, figures she’ll probably work at least another 10 years into her late 60s — and maybe part-time after that. Older friends are already collecting Social Security.

“In my group, you wonder if it’s going to be available,” Wiggins said of government programs that support older people. “Maybe it’s not. You will find people who are less apt to have a traditional pension. Those are things that leave you with a lot of trepidation toward the future.”

Read the entire article here.

Reverse mortgages have long been a strategic way to help fund aging in place. By utilizing a reverse mortgage, the borrower is able to remain in the home mortgage payment free, while accessing the equity in the home to pay for needs that may arise such as improvements to the home or caregivers. 

Reverse mortgages are available to those 62 and over, including married couples. The funds from a reverse mortgage can be accessed via a lump sum, line of credit, monthly installments, or to purchase a home. If you have questions let a 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, Boulder and other Front Range areas of Colorado.  Click here to contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Social Security Is On Track To See The Highest Increase In 40 Years

The Social Security Administration is responding to the highest inflation rates in 40 years with what’s expected to be the biggest cost-of-living raise in decades.

According to Fortune:

Social Security checks increased by 5.9% this year relative to last, one of the biggest boosts retirees had seen in some time. And with inflation still sky-high — the consumer price index jumped 8.5% in March — they may get an even bigger increase next year.

The 2023 cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, could be as high as 8.9%, according to a preliminary analysis released Tuesday from the Senior Citizens League, a nonpartisan seniors’ advocacy group. It’s possible it could climb even higher than that, depending on what happens with inflation in the next few months, says Mary Johnson, Social Security and Medicare policy analyst at the Senior Citizens League.

The official Social Security COLA will be announced in October, which means there is still six months’ worth of economic data to be taken into consideration before it is finalized.

“I have never witnessed inflation this high,” Johnson says. The Social Security COLA is calculated based on the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers, or CPI-W, a more general inflation measure than the headline Consumer Price Index for all Urban Consumers, or CPI-U. The CPI-W weights clothing, food, and transportation costs more heavily than the CPI-U.

The COLA was just 1.3% in 2021, and raised Social Security Income by an average of about $20 per month. This year, the average retiree’s checks are $92 bigger each month, says Johnson.

Though inflation is hard on all consumers, it is particularly painful for retirees who live on a fixed monthly income. Johnson points out that though 2022 and 2023 are likely to see record increases, they won’t be able to make up for years of increases that averaged around just 1.4%.

Social Security used to make up just one part of the typical senior’s retirement income, in addition to pensions and workplace savings. Pensions are rare these days, Johnson notes, and many people are not saving enough for retirement on their own, many because they cannot afford to do so.

“Because they’re not working, they have to have a good savings plan and emergency savings” to fall back on, she says. “But our brains are not wired to think long-term like that.”

Reverse mortgages are an excellent tool to help balance the uncertainty of retirement funding, whether by cushioning investments in a volatile market or delaying Social Security benefits

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Fort Lupton, Erie,  Lafayette, 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.

Tips To Using A Reverse Mortgage To Delay Social Security

reverse mortgage colorado fort collins loveland greeley longmont cheyenneWhen 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 Lupton, Erie,  Lafayette, 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.

7 Top Reverse Mortgage Myths In Colorado

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoReverse Mortgage was created to give our retiring generation a way to keep their homes and manage the ever increasing costs of life in America after working long and hard over the years. It is an option that could be just right for you. All applicants are required to participate in HUD approved counseling to ensure all their questions and concerns are addressed. Working with a reputable reverse mortgage specialist will also be critical in the process, as this person should be your advocate – even telling you when a reverse mortgage may be wrong for you.

In the meantime, unravel the myths floating around about what a reverse mortgage is and what it does.

Here are a few myth busting facts:

Myth #1: Reverse mortgages are only for poor people.
Fact: Many retirees use reverse mortgage as a way to fulfill their desires for retirement, or to help grandchildren with college, or even to move into their dream home.

Myth #2: It’s free money.
Fact: It is a loan specialized for those 62 years old and older that does not need to be paid back until the last borrower passes away or leaves the home permanently.  If anyone attempts to market a reverse mortgage as “free money”, beware as it is likely a scam.

Myth #3: You lose your home.
Fact: The title of your home stays in your hands.

Myth #4: It is not a safe program.
Fact: Reverse mortgages are FHA insured and fully guaranteed – regardless of how you receive the payout.

Myth #5: My equity is safe if I don’t use a reverse mortgage right now.
Fact: Your equity is dependent upon the housing market, which is always changing.

Myth #6: I must be a homeowner or use my current home to obtain a reverse mortgage.
Fact: Reverse mortgages can be used to purchase a home, even if you have never owned a home before.

Myth #7:  If I’m married, my spouse will lose the home if I pass away.
Fact:  Married couples can both be on the loan if both are 62 or older.  There are many ways to ensure both spouses are not at risk.

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 Makes A Home Eligible For A Reverse Mortgage?

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeleyReverse Mortgages are a specialized loan available to seniors 62 and over.  This creative resource is used by a wide demographic – from those looking to supplement a fixed income, to the more affluent in need of protection for retirement assets, and even those wanting to purchase a home in retirement.  But there are some requirements when it comes to the actual home…

Which types of homes are included? 

According the HUD’s Federal Housing Administration, the home must be a single family home or a 2-4 unit home with one unit occupied by the borrower. Some condominiums and manufactured homes that are approved by HUD also meet FHA requirements.

In the case of a Reverse Mortgage for Purchase, borrowers can use a reverse mortgage to purchase a single family home or 2-4 unit home with completed construction that has received a certificate of occupancy.

Are there reasons my home may not qualify?

A home with very little equity may not qualify, although homes with existing mortgages may.

In addition, homes must be maintained with general upkeep and be current on property taxes and other expenses relevant to the home.

A second home or vacation home may not qualify.  The borrower must be living (or plan to live) in the home.

Bottom line

The funds from a reverse mortgage can be accessed via a lump sum, line of credit, monthly installments, or to purchase a home. If you have questions 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, Boulder and other Front Range areas of Colorado.  Click here to contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Taxes and Reverse Mortgage: A Quick Guide

reverse mortgage loveland colorado fort collins longmont greeley boulderAs tax looms, it’s common to start receiving some questions about taxes and reverse mortgage. There 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 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.

Reverse mortgages are available to homeowners 62 and over, including married couples, with many protections in place to ensure borrowers are adequately educated before using this option, such as required third-party counseling.  Reverse mortgages are gaining in popularity among retirees from all walks of life.  A reverse mortgage for purchase option is available for those looking to purchase a new residence.

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 A Reverse Mortgage Can Help With Divorce

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont 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.

Want To Sell Your Home That Has A Reverse Mortgage? Yes, You Can

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoTypically when a senior takes out a reverse mortgage loan on a home, they intend to age there.  But on occasion and for 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.  

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.

The Reverse Mortgage Line Of Credit HECM-LOC Is Highly Unique And Here’s Why

Reverse Mortgage for Purchase Loveland Fort Collins Greeley Longmont Westminster Colorado Cheyenne Laramie WyomingThe HECM Reverse Mortgage Line of Credit is still relatively new, and to this day many within the financial and retirement industries haven’t fully grasped how it works.  Well, they need to get on board because consumers are interested – and they should be.  Here’s why..

First, what is a line of credit?  Simply put, a line of credit are funds available to you through a financial institution that you can access as needed, or not at all if the need doesn’t arise.  Interest is not acquired if the funds are not used.  This makes line of credit options excellent safety nets, especially for the purpose of creative retirement strategy.

When looking at a HECM Reverse Mortgage Line of Credit, the two are obviously intertwined, meaning the qualification requirements for any reverse mortgage still apply.  These are: age 62 and over, using your primary residence for the loan, this home must meet HUD’s guidelines and needs to be either paid off or have substantial equity, and the borrower must have the financial capability to continue to pay homeowners insurance, property taxes, and the like. Because there are various options to receive the payout from a reverse mortgage, the line of credit is only one of them.

When you have a reverse mortgage line of credit, you have money that is available to you — but you only accrue interest on the money you withdraw.  This means the reverse mortgage line of credit can act as an excellent back up source of funds or can be used for retirement fun, whether it be vacation, spoiling grandchildren, or knowing you have the funds available when you’re ready to take on new ventures.

There are other benefits though.  This line of credit is pretty astounding beyond just being a safety net.

Growth: Not only are you not paying interest, but your untouched reverse mortgage line of credit can grow in value. Money in a reverse mortgage line of credit grows at the same rate as the interest rate on the loan PLUS 1.25% monthly.  So, if the interest rate on your reverse mortgage is 2.50%, then your line of credit will grow at 3.75% (2.50% + 1.25%).

Unique: This growth is unique to reverse mortgage lines of credit — a HELOC for example does not grow.

Hedge Against Falling House Prices: The growth in a reverse mortgage line of credit is guaranteed — without withdrawals, your line of credit is guaranteed to grow.  This means you lock in the current value of your home without taking out an interest acruing loan.

Pretty great, isn’t it?

Jan Jordan is a Reverse Mortgage Specialist serving the Erie, Firestone, Fort Lupton, 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.