Reverse Mortgage Information


Planning Vs. Need & Reverse Mortgages

More and more I am coming across clients who are interested in using the reverse mortgage as a retirement planning tool, rather than as an absolute need for additional cash. 

Out of my last 10 reverse mortgage loans, 4 of them already had decent incomes, low or no mortgages.  One thing that seems to be a common thread is the idea of planning for the future.

One client had a beautiful $800,000 home right on the golf course with no mortgage payment.  Over the last 2 years though his investment portfolio really took a hit and his income from that went down by half. He was loathe to bail out on those investments at the bottom, knowing that until he sold, he really had no realized losses.  His solution was to take a reverse mortgage out and use the tax free monthly tenure payments  to supplement his income back to a more normal state.  His plan is to maintain his lifestyle and when his investments recoup their value and that income returns to normal he will reduce the tenure payments he is receiving on the reverse loan.

I spoke with another client today, who basically wants to do the same thing. He is looking to have some of his equity reserved for his use, should he need it in the future and to supplement his lower returns on his investment income. Some smart retirees are figuring out that even with the high closing costs, the fact that the interest rates are low, and the loan proceeds income is tax free seems to be a logical move to help them maintain their lifestyle and protect their other investments.

A couple of clients are considering using a reverse mortgage to help them to delay taking their Social Security so they can take advantage of a higher SS payment later.  And some of those folks are thinking that even if they sell their home when they do take the Social Security, they will be able to still get enough equity from the sale to buy a single story new home to retire in and finance that with a reverse mortgage.

Another couple I worked with at the beginning of this year, saw their monthly income reduced from $10,000 per month to just $5,000.  Not a bad income, but still very difficult to adjust too.  My original recomendation was for them to sell the home but the older borrower was in his 90's and just couldn't bear to go thru packing and moving after 40 years in the house. With the new higher lending limits this year for FHA reverse mortgages they were able to increase their income, remain in the home and will still have tons of equity down the road. 

I've already written about the dear lady in LA who got her reverse just to have money availabe to provide for her home health care should she ever need it.  She swears that she will never move to a nursing facility, no matter how nice.

Lots of interesting things to consider.... 

As always I love to hear your comments, ideas, suggestions.  Tell me what you think!




By Deborah Nance


Your Local Southern California Reverse Mortgage Professional

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Equal Housing Lender

iReverse Home Loans, LLC, NMLS#810502 originates reverse mortgages in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona (MB-0919584), California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon (ML-5378), Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont (1164-MB), Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin. 

Important Information: Reverse Mortgages are neither "endorsed" nor "approved" by the Federal Government. The FHA (Federal Housing Administration) provides certain insurance benefits for lenders and borrowers in connection with the lender’s HECM loans; the FHA does not make or originate loans. The owner(s) retain title to the property that is the subject of the reverse mortgage until the person sells or transfers the property and is therefore responsible for paying property taxes, insurance, maintenance and related taxes. Failing to pay these amounts or failure to maintain the condition of your property may cause the reverse mortgage loan to become due immediately. A reverse mortgage is a complex loan secured by your home. Whether such mortgage makes sense for you depends on your financial situation and needs. For these reasons, we strongly recommend that you consult with a qualified independent housing counselor, family members and other trusted advisers before making this decision. This website is not from HUD or FHA and was not approved by HUD or any government agency.

Comment balloon 3 commentsDeborah Nance • August 27 2009 10:48PM


Deborah, you have given some excellent examples where a reverse mortgage makes perfect sense. BTW, welcome to Active Rain!


Posted by Sharon Alters, Realtor - Homes for Sale Fleming Island FL (Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty - 904-673-2308) almost 10 years ago

Hi Deborah,

Good information. You know reverse mortgages can work for some and be extremely helpful.

We looked into it for my own mom, her desire was to remain in her home...we all felt the same way. After all it was "her" equity, what she earned a deserved to take care of her in her remaining years. In our case she passed before the process was finished.

As a senior myself, I would consider it for me if I thought it were necessary. And I do have a buyer right now who is in escrow on a reverse-purchase. She's buying a condo for $194,000 with about 40% down, after that she will have ZERO payments for the rest of her life.



Posted by Lynda Eisenmann, Broker-Owner,CRS,CDPE,GRI,SRES, Brea,CA, Orange Co (Preferred Home Brokers) almost 10 years ago

Hi Lynda,  That is SO cool!  Good for her.  I like the idea of using the RM for purchase on a 3 or 4 Plex too!  No monthly mortgage payment and rental income.... just have to live in one of the units!

Posted by Deborah Nance, Southern California , Reverse Mortgage Specialist (Orange County, Corona, Riverside, Los Angeles) almost 10 years ago

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