Conservatorships & Reverse Mortgage Loans

The early onset Alzheimer’s diagnosis was a shock. Who would step in as Conservator and where would resources for helping the family member come from? It can be quite the balancing act. Situation: Cathy never expected her Aunt Trish would ever have needs. She was always super independent and someone she looked up to. So, when she got in trouble with some late bills and seemed to forget appointments and scheduled lunches, friends and family started to wonder what was happening. Aunt Trish covered up the problems for quite a while. But, after several incidents during the holidays, Cathy sat down with her to talk it out. Once it was finally determined that she needed help, things had gotten pretty challenging. Her credit was damaged with some past due payments but she had kept up the mortgage and property taxes. The Money Choices: Aunt [...]

Cash-Flow Killers

Connie recently retired at age 66. With social security and 2 small pensions, it seemed like there would be enough to comfortably live on. The Situation: But then her car needed a major repair! The Financial Challenge: Shoot! We know to expect things to wear out and need repair. But we can underestimate them, especially when several occurrences happen in a short timeframe. Now some additional debt on a car has pushed the budget outside her comfort zone. When asking her financial planner about withdrawing some additional funds from retirement assets, they discussed the importance of the longevity of those assets. He suggested she speak with Kim Dodge to see if a reverse mortgage could be a help. Her home was the right style for aging in place, and she had help with great neighbors nearby. She was where she was meant to be, [...]

Mom and Son, Reverse Mortgage Co-Borrowers

You pause when you see age 98 as your client's date of birth on their driver’s license. It’s a ‘moment’ ...You pause and think about that lifespan and what it experienced in the last almost 100 years of history. Lily’s appearance looked like 98 too I guess. She had deep character lines on her face and a strained shuffle behind her walker. But her eyes were different from the rest of her body. They shined with an intensity that matched her spoken words. Lily knew she needed financial security for herself and her caregiver son. People of advanced years, including my mother, say that even though the body gets old you are still the ‘same you’ inside and I believe it. Lily knew what she wanted and was not shy in communicating it. She wanted to stay in her home as long as possible. [...]

I Don’t Like Debt

When your mantra is I don’t like debt, it can be a big leap to look at a reverse mortgage. We join their story where… Janet completed a Reverse Mortgage with Kim Dodge’s team and promptly told her neighbor Farrah how the loan was changing her life for the better. Knowing her neighbors Farrah and Joels for over 20 years, Janet was adamant that they look into the Reverse Loan possibilities. Would a line of credit/loan on their house where they didn’t have to make a monthly principal and interest payments finally convince Joel to retire? And really, Farrah was tired of pinching pennies and ‘sitting around the house waiting to die’. Sounds dramatic of course (and she was not just sitting around, that’s for sure) but Farrah felt the tug of their advancing years and she was afraid that if they ‘didn’t get [...]

Acres and Acres of Home Love – Are we eligible for a Reverse Mortgage Loan?

Zoned "Farmland" it would seem doubtful, but surprise, FHA will lend on large acreage properties under certain circumstances. The Situation: Neither Lonnie nor Kay wanted to sell the farm, it had been in the family for decades. However, the maintenance burden was becoming difficult to manage with social security income alone and a small IRA. And then there was the big question no one seemed to be able to answer with certainty yet – was 45 acres zoned “farmland” eligible for a Reverse Mortgage? The Challenges: Financially, Social Security income was sufficient for monthly cash-flow and they were comfortable. The worry was they had no fund set aside for long term maintenance on the property, life having to resurface the long driveway every five years and eventually, the barn would need a new roof. Lonnie and Kay were concerned that tapping their IRA for [...]

“Equity Share” is NOT a component of an FHA Mortgage Loan!

FHA reverse mortgages offer borrowers specific benefits and protections. Make sure you know if the loan you are inquiring about is FHA Insured. Then make an apples to apples comparison.  Situation: Julie is concerned about the loan they took out when Anthony got sick. The medical bills were piling up fast. They responded to a mailing from a lender that advertised a cash-out loan and no monthly payments. It seemed to be a solution for them to stay on top of their bills that did NOT require a monthly payment. Unfortunately, they didn’t fully understand the terms of this loan and they were under pressure. They signed the loan documents only to realize later that this was not an FHA Insured Reverse Mortgage (a HECM) but they had signed on for an “EQUITY SHARE” loan. That part was not really made clear on the [...]

Amy’s Retirement Safety Net

Amy has a good pension to augment her social security. But when larger expenses arise, she’s concerned her retirement safety net isn’t strong enough... The Situation: Amy has enough income to cover regular expenses in retirement. But, when larger, unplanned costs started to crop up, she became concerned that her retirement safety net was not quite strong enough. Her home is perfect with one level, and there is enough room for family gatherings and to have the grandkids play (she’s helping with some after-school care). Amy explored a reverse mortgage as a back-up and EVEN started the application process. Then her loan officer quit and the next person in line from that mortgage company called her, a "fast talker"; not really the quality you want in a financial professional. Clearly uncomfortable, Amy reached out to her Credit Union, who referred her to Kim Dodge [...]

Cashflow, Dreams & the Duplex

Brian and Pam were not confident in the mortgage options presented to them. Their loan officer of many years only presented a traditional mortgage that wouldn't help cash-flow. As they entered into a new life phase, their home financing had to evolve too.  The Situation: Brian and Pam moved into one of their rental units, a one-floor duplex; no stairs for the sore knees. As they looked to retiring completely, they wanted to maximize their opportunity for better cash-flow. However, they had concerns about being able to do so with a duplex and keeping the property held in their trust. After talking with several large lenders and their original loan officer, their financial advisor recommended they pursue another viewpoint ~ one more strategically aligned with retirement, from a loan team that was local and who could compare multiple options side [...]

Conflict at Age 78

At 78, Alison is conflicted on how to meet her financial needs and leave something for her daughter when she passes away.   The Situation Alison is healthy and sometimes a little ornery (or so her daughter Amber lovingly says.) Since Alison's husband died, she has not been as confident in her retirement finances, like she used to be. Mostly concerned about future in-home care costs when she likely will need assistance, she reached out to her daughter to discuss. She needed to prepare for possible emergencies. Additionally, a few important home repairs are needed and they don't fit in her current budget. Alison's daughter Amber knew of Kim Dodge from an event where Kim illustrated a number of FHA Reverse Mortgage strategies for senior home owners. When Alison spoke with Kim, she felt immediately comfortable that she had someone on her [...]

Unexpected Tax Bill Can Escalate Other Debt

An unexpected tax amount can be a problem in early retirement.  Even with a well crafted budget or payment plan, it can strain or implode cash-flow. Once you get behind, it feels impossible to catch up!  Did Kelly and George retire too early?? The Situation: Kelly and George had an unexpected tax liability early in retirement.  A payment plan helped, but this extra debt (along with the need for some credit card debt help) was a burden their monthly cash flow.  They still had a mortgage payment.  Had they retired too early and maybe their assets weren't going to last?  This became a huge worry. Their financial advisor suggested they talk with Kim Dodge to find out if an FHA reverse mortgage was a good option for home financing in their situation.  While nervous, since they didn't know exactly what [...]

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