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Reverse Mortgage Questions

Apr 15

The following are some frequently asked reverse mortgage questions:

For those who aren't familiar with reverse mortgages, what are they?

Using a reverse mortgage, homeowners over the age of 62 can access the equity in their house and get a range of payment alternatives. It is one of the benefits of this loan because it is not due for repayment until the homeowner(s) no longer resides in the house, until the final survivor of the last borrower dies away, or until the property no longer meets FHA requirements and the loan obligations are not met. Federal Housing Administration (FHA) insurance covers Home Equity Conversion Mortgages, which are regulated by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and may ease money problems for elderly qualifying homeowners.

Reverse mortgages can be obtained on a wide range of property types.

For a reverse mortgage, does my home qualify?

Homeowners who own single-family homes, detached homes, townhouses, or properties with two to four units may be able to take out a reverse mortgage. There must be FHA approval for condos to exist. Some prefabricated houses are eligible for FHA financing, but they must fulfill the agency's strict requirements. For further information about prefabricated home eligibility, please contact your loan officer.

A reverse mortgage vs. a home equity loan: what's the difference?

With a reverse mortgage, borrowers can get loan proceeds that do not demand immediate repayment as long as they remain in their primary residence, do not sell their property, at least one borrower remains in the house and you fulfill the basic income and credit conditions.

An equity loan (or line of credit or second mortgage) on the other hand necessitates having enough monthly income to service the debt, as well as making regular payments on your mortgage, principle and interest.

Reverse mortgages don't need monthly principle and interest payments, but they do require that you fulfill certain income and credit criteria. All property-related fees, taxes, and homeowner's insurance must continue to be paid by the owner of the property as well as maintaining the property in good shape.

How much money can I expect to make from this?

Depending on the age of the youngest borrower, current predicted interest rates, mortgage type selected, equity in the house and the appraised value of your home, you may be eligible for a lump sum payment. So, for example, at the same predicted interest rate, an older borrower may often get more money than a younger borrower with the same house value but a lower equity. Only a certain amount of money may be taken out in the first year. Here you may find out more about distribution and its limitations.

You are not need to have your mortgage paid off in order to be eligible.

How long do I have to pay back the loan? Does the lender require my payments?

No. There is no repayment obligation as long as you or your spouse continue to live in the house, pay the taxes and insurance and keep it in good condition. This is true even if your spouse no longer resides in the property. To avoid default, the loan must be paid back once the last living borrower has passed away (as well as any non-borrowing spouse).

In order to be eligible for a reverse mortgage, must I have paid off my home completely?

No. To be eligible, you don't need to have paid off your house. Because of this, a reverse mortgage can only be used to pay off your current mortgage or debts (if there is a mortgage balance owing). The mortgage backing the reverse mortgage loan will remain in place, and you will still own your house.

Are the cash payments I receive subject to taxation?

In most cases, you won't owe taxes on the money you get from a reverse mortgage. You are, however, still liable for property taxes, insurance, utilities, fuel, upkeep, and other home-related costs because you still own the property. Reverse mortgage interest is not tax deductible until the loan is fully or partially repaid. We recommend that you speak with a tax professional if you'd need specific advice tailored to your unique situation.

It's important to know the impact of this loan on my estate and how much money will be left to my children.

This means that any money you got from your reverse mortgage must be repaid after the last living borrower dies or if the property is no longer your primary residence, together with any interest and other penalties that may accrue. You or your heirs are the only owners of any unassigned capital. You or your estate will not be liable for more than the value of the house when the loan is paid back, under a "non-recourse" clause in the contract. A deed in lieu of foreclosure or payment of 95 percent of the home's appraised worth, less closing fees and commissions, can be signed by the estate (heirs) if the ultimate loan debt exceeds the home's value, but not both.

Is it a good idea to use an estate planning firm to help me get a reverse loan?

Anyone who wants a reverse mortgage should avoid any service that charges a fee (save for the mandatory HECM counseling) or any service that seeks a loan referral fee. In addition, HUD can refer you to housing agencies that are recognized by HUD to provide free or minimally-cost reverse mortgage counseling or other HUD-approved services.

Up to $125 is commonly charged for reverse mortgage (HECM) counseling. Some counseling agencies may waive the charge for qualifying candidates if the borrower cannot pay it. HUD-approved housing counselors near you can be found by contacting 1-800-569-4287.

How will I be paid once I'm accepted?

Payouts from a reverse mortgage can be made in any one of five ways:

  • Indefinitely deferred installments
  • Monthly payments equal to the agreed-upon amount for a predetermined period of time
  • Credit Line: payments made in installments or at different periods and in the amount that is determined by the borrower (s)
  • Tenure with a line of credit: monthly payments
  • Modified Paying a fixed amount each month for a predetermined length of time

The loan will mature and the balance is due and payable in certain conditions. Paying property taxes and insurance is still a responsibility of the borrower, who is still accountable for repayment. Age, minimum income, credit history, and property criteria all go into the decision to grant credit. Some states do not have access to the program's prices, fees, terms, and conditions, which can change at any time.


Myths about reverse mortgages

  • You're evicted from your house
  • It's for the poor alone
  • It's a no-brainer
  • My money isn't secure
  • Not a safe application

Facts about reverse mortgages

  • Your home is still yours, even if you take out a reverse mortgage.
  • It's a unique type of loan that only applies to certain situations
  • The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) insures reverse mortgages (Home Equity Conversion Mortgages), protecting both borrowers and lenders