Category: Information for Adult Children

Reverse Mortgages Helping the Elderly Age at Home

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoAs traditional forms of elder care continue to be overshadowed by numerous other options, reverse mortgage is often helping senior individuals stay in their homes while they age.  Since reverse mortgages can open up opportunity to turn home equity into liquid cash, without having to move or make a mortgage loan payment, seniors and their families are using this opportunity to pay for care that would otherwise not be covered by basic Medicare or Medicaid.

Traditionally, “long term” elder care takes place in a nursing home or assisted living facility.  Medicare or Medicaid will often cover these expenses. but there is little public assistance for “in-home care”, although it varies from state to state.  As economic woes lend to retirement fears, reverse mortgage is more commonly being utilized for what it can do best, provide security for those most in need and offer a longer-term lifeline without disrupting the lives of the recipients.

Studies have shown that the benefits of aging in place can be enormous for the right candidate.  Not only can a move be both emotionally and physically challenging on a senior, especially one with medical concerns, it’s known that the quality of life tends to increase when seniors maintain their independence and their community ties.  Benefits include:

  • Comfort.  We all know the saying “There’s no place like home”, but this is often especially true when a senior has lived in a home for years or has lost a spouse.  Uprooting from such familiarity can have drastic affects.
  • Community Ties.  More often seniors are developing strong community ties well into their retirement years.  Family and friends are wonderful for grounding an aging loved one.
  • Independence. Remaining independent keeps seniors healthier than ever realized before.  It also allows them to continue doing many of the things they have always done and enjoyed.
  • Mentality. Our home life strongly impacts how we feel mentally. If a senior stays home to age they are likely to feel much better and happier than one that has been put into a nursing home or assisted care facility.

A reverse mortgage can help seniors 62 and over tap into their home equity regardless of income or credit.  For more detailed information on how a reverse mortgage works, click here.

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.

Assisted Living or Reverse Mortgage: Pros and Cons

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

Reverse Mortgage vs HELOC vs Downsizing

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoHome equity accounts for approximately 70% of a senior’s assets, not including social security or pension.  Often times tapping into this equity becomes inevitable when facing health crisis or financial restrictions in retirement.  Using home equity should be part of a larger financial plan and there are a few ways it can be incorporated.

Reverse Mortgage

reverse mortgage is available to seniors 62 and older with married couples being eligible to both be on the loan if both meet the age requirement.  Homeowners who obtain these loans do not make monthly mortgage or loan payments but  instead receive the funds in a variety of available options, including monthly installment and a line of credit.   The loan does not have to be repaid until the last borrower passes away, at which time there are options available to heirs.  The amount of the loan depends on the amount of equity in the home and the age of the borrowers – the older the borrower, the more money they can receive.  This is an excellent option for both seniors with questionable retirement funds or the retiree who is looking to boost their portfolio.

Home Equity Loan

home equity loan (HELOC) also taps into equity by borrowing money against the home.  This type of loan will be processed as a conventional loan and monthly payments will need to be made to the lender.  Any health or future financial concerns should be thoroughly thought through prior to taking out a home equity loan.  Loading up the home with debt during retirement can be risky and could result in loss of the home if the borrowers are unable to make their monthly payments.

Downsize

Another option would be to downsize all together by selling the existing home and moving into a more modest situation.  Depending on the amount of equity in the home, a homeowner may be able to sell the home for enough money to comfortably be able to make rent or mortgage payments for 10 to 20  years.  Just as with a home equity loan, this option could be risky for a person with health concerns as the funds set aside for housing could be needed elsewhere.  For homeowners looking to downsize, a Reverse Mortgage for Purchase is also a very good option.  This will allow the borrower to move into the home they desire AND eliminate mortgage payments.

Before making any major decisions regarding how to effectively use the equity in your home, it is best to consult with a financial adviser and a reputable reverse mortgage lender.

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.

Would You Have These Things In Order If Your Spouse Passed Away?

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoRegardless 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.

5 Reverse Mortgage Myths That Need To Go Away

Reverse mortgages have made a serious comeback in the past several years.  After regulation changes were enacted in 2015, the reverse mortgage loan once considered a desperate lifeline is now being used as a retirement tool for even the wealthy.  The loans are still only available to seniors 62 and older (including married couples) with the amount of funds available increasing depending on age and appraised value of the home, but now those funds are often being accessed in ways not available before – such as a line of credit or to purchase a home.  This really is not your mother’s reverse mortgage, it’s something much more versatile than it was years ago.

Here are some lesser known facts about today’s reverse mortgage:

1.)  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – the borrower will always remain the homeowner as long as basic responsibilities such as property taxes are paid, homeowners insurance is kept current, and utilities and HOA fees are paid.  One of reverse mortgage’s scariest myths has always been that a bank will own the home.  This couldn’t be further from the truth.  Not only will the borrower remain the homeowner, they will also retain the title.

2.) There are NO mortgage or loan payments.  That’s correct.  Regardless of how the borrower decides to utilize the reverse mortgage funds, they will not pay a loan or mortgage payment while they remain in the home.

3.) With a Reverse Mortgage for Purchase, borrowers can wrap both the home purchase and the reverse mortgage into the same transaction allowing them to buy their dream home – AND the reverse mortgage will substantially supplement purchasing power allowing a home to be purchased that may have once been out of their price range.  When using a Reverse Mortgage for Purchase, the borrower is required to provide some down payment and the reverse mortgage funds will make up the rest of the purchase price.

4.) Married couples can both be on the loan regardless of how the funds are utilized.  Another all too common myth is that in the case of a married couple, if one spouse passes away the other spouse will be evicted.  When working with a reputable reverse mortgage lender this should never happen.  As long as both spouses are 62 or over, they can both be on the loan allowing either borrower to stay in the home until the last spouses passes away or permanently leaves the home.

5.) Heirs are not “saddled” with the debt of a reverse mortgage.  After the borrower(s) pass away, there are several options as to what the heirs can do with the home.  And in today’s hot housing market, the home may gain equity that can be available to the heirs.  Most all reverse mortgages are FHA insured meaning the loan will never exceed the amount of the home sale – even if more is owed, and it also means it will only ever require the amount of the loan even if the home is worth much more when it comes due.

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

Reverse Mortgage Counseling: What To Expect

Reverse Mortgage Loveland Fort Collins Denver Boulder Longmont Greeley ColoradoPrior to being approved for a reverse mortgage, HUD’s Federal Housing Administration (FHA) requires each borrow to participate in a counseling session with an approved agency. These not-for-profit agencies are funded by the federal government and work closely with both the FHA and lenders to ensure a smooth process.

The goal of this session is not to steer a potential borrower in one direction or another, but to make sure they clearly understand all aspects of a reverse mortgage.

Here is what you can expect at your counseling session:

The potential borrower will need to schedule an appointment directly with a counseling agency. The lender does not initiate or take part in the session, but can provide you with resources to seek out a counselor. The session will take place in person or over the phone – although the FHA recommends a face-to-face meeting whenever possible.

Prior to your appointment, the counseling agency will provide you with a packet of information to allow you to prepare for the session. During the session the counselor will discuss your immediate and long-term financial needs, your reasons for seeking out a reverse mortgage, address any questions or concerns you may have, and clearly educate you on the process as well as the pros and cons of a reverse mortgage. Again, they are not there to “sell” you on the product, but to educate instead.

Once you have completed the counseling session, you will be provided with a “Certificate of Completion”. This certificate verifies to your lender that you have completed the counseling session and that you understand the essentials of a reverse mortgage. Your counselor will also follow up with you to ensure you have no further needs, questions, or concerns.

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 to learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

How Reverse Mortgage Perception Has Shifted And What It Means For Borrowers

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoSince the reverse mortgage industry saw big changes in 2015 then again in 2017, financial advisers, retirement planners, and reverse mortgage specialists are collaborating more than ever before.  In an effort to ensure these changes are are thoroughly understood and appropriate solutions are offered to clients, a strong relationship between professionals is vitally important.

Because of these newly developed relationships, it appears a wonderful shift is taking place.  Reverse mortgage, once stereotyped as a product for poverty stricken widows or the like, is now being realized as a product of opportunity.  More and more we’re seeing affluent and middle class retirees utilizing this option to provide financial stability and financial freedom throughout retirement.  The industry has only begun to scratch the surface of those who would benefit or will discover the possibilities when tying a reverse mortgage into their retirement plans.

This paradigm shift will likely increase knowledge across the board regarding both traditional reverse mortgage loans and the reverse mortgage for purchase program.  Both products are available for seniors 62 and over.

If you have any questions regarding the changes that have taken place surrounding the reverse mortgage industry in Colorado, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

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..

Yes, Married Couple CAN Get A Reverse Mortgage

reverse mortgage colorado loveland fort collins longmont greeleyIt’s not uncommon to hear heartbreaking stories of reverse mortgages that left a spouse in dire straits after the other spouse passed away. How could this happen?  Is it something that you need to worry about?  If you and your spouse are considering obtaining a reverse mortgage, it’s important to understand the long term effect it could have on either spouse once the other passes away, and feel confident any appropriate protections are in place.

What Married Couples Need to Know 

When applying for a reverse mortgage the amount of money you can receive is calculated according to the age of the youngest borrower. The older the borrower, the more money is available from the lender.

If both homeowners are over the age of 62, both homeowners can be on a reverse mortgage loan.  If both spouses are on the loan, the loan continues if either passes away and will continue until both borrowers have passed.

Another scenario to consider is if a borrower obtains a reverse mortgage and then remarries.  If this was to happen, it wouldn’t be unheard of for the married couple to live in the home for 20 or more years before the borrower passes.  At this time the new spouse would not be protected under the existing reverse mortgage loan.  If you have reverse mortgage and you remarry, you could consider looking into refinancing the reverse mortgage and adding the new spouse to the loan.

And yet one more thing to note is the possibility one spouse needs to move out of the home into an assisted living facility due to health concerns.  If this happens, as long as the spouse that remains in the home is on the loan, they can continue under their current reverse mortgage.

Bottom line: If you are married and are considering obtaining a reverse mortgage, it is extremely important to work with a trusted and experienced reverse mortgage specialist who can easily answer all of your questions and address any concerns you may have.  Making sure both spouses are protected should be a lender’s top priority.

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 to learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Reverse Mortgage Funds Aren’t Just For Emergencies

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoOne of the best parts of a reverse mortgage is the borrower(s) can do anything they’d like with the funds – while also living mortgage payment free.  In Colorado, seniors are more active than ever, whether it be traveling, home improvements, or visiting with family and grandchildren often.  As several Colorado cities always make the list of the best cities to retire (including Fort Collins & Loveland in this survey and Firestone, Parker & Louisville in this one) there couldn’t be a better time or place to enjoy life.

Here are 3 fulfilling ways seniors are using their reverse mortgage funds:

Take that trip they always dreamed of – After years of working hard, saving for retirement, and raising a family, some reverse mortgage borrowers are using a portion of their funds to take the bucket list vacation they’ve always dreamed of.  This option becomes less probable as they age and makes for a fantastic celebration by the more active seniors.

Visit with loved ones – Whether it’s a sister who hasn’t visited in 10 years, or children and grandchildren, or long lost friends, using reverse mortgage funds to visit with loved ones is a very common today.  Travel can be expensive and it holds us back far too often from the visits that mean the most to us, especially as we age.

Make home repairs or upgrades – After a life of caring for others, senior homeowners often find parts of their home may have been neglected.  When using a reverse mortgage to tap into home equity without a subsequent loan payment borrowers often make those repairs or upgrades they have been longing for.  Whether it’s a sunroom addition or a kitchen remodel, or just dutiful repairs, this is never a bad option.

Reverse mortgages are available to homeowners 62 and over.  This FHA insured loan offers funds through a lump sum, monthly installments, or a line of credit and eliminates monthly mortgage payments.  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.  And 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.  Click here to contact Jan and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

What You Need To Know About Reverse Mortgage Appraisals in Colorado

reverse mortgage loveland fort collins greeley longmont westminster coloradoGetting 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.