Category: Reverse Mortgage for Purchase

Reverse Mortgage For Purchase – A Hidden Gem

reverse mortgage advisor connecticutNearly everyone is familiar with a Reverse Mortgage and many even know someone who has used one to increase cash flow or help them remain in their existing home.  But what many people don’t realize is that you can also use one to purchase a home.  This little known portion of the reverse mortgage program, called Reverse Mortgage (HECM) for Purchase, is a golden gem to many seniors who are looking to settle down somewhere other than their current home for retirement.  Whether looking to move closer to family, purchase a single level home, or move into a senior community, these homebuyers are able to purchase a home they often wouldn’t be able to afford otherwise while still eliminating mortgage payments – all in a single transaction.

To qualify, the borrower(s) must be 62 years or older, be purchasing an eligible property, have the required down payment, and meet the HECM financial assessment guidelines.  Eligible property types are single family residences, new construction, HUD approved condos and townhomes. Allowable down payment sources include cash from savings or investments, proceeds from the sale of an existing home or asset, gifts. Funds that are borrowed such as a loan or credit cards are not allowed as a funding source.  The amount of the down payment varies depending on the age of the youngest borrowers and the cost of the new home.

Working with an educated real estate agent and reverse mortgage specialist will expedite the process, and in most cases in a Reverse Mortgage for Purchase does not take longer to complete than a typical home purchase with a traditional loan.

Sara Cornwall is a local Reverse Mortgage Advisor serving the entire state of Connecticut. Contact Sara and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Why Reverse Mortgage for Purchase is Different

reverse mortgage advisor connecticutThe Reverse Mortgage for Purchase program is an age-based mortgage insured by the FHA for individuals and married couples aged 62 and older. Unlike a traditional mortgage, monthly payments are deferred and the loan balance increases over time. Because the loan is backed by the FHA, neither the borrower(s) nor their heirs are personally liable for the debt.

So what does all that really mean?

It’s actually very simple…let’s say you use a reverse mortgage to purchase your dream home and decide to move in 10 years. When you sell your home you will receive 100% of the net proceeds after paying off the loan balance at the time of the sale. This is exactly how a traditional mortgage works.

The primary benefit of using a reverse mortgage for purchase comes into play during your living years in the fact that you are not paying a monthly payment to the mortgage company, thereby increasing your monthly cash flow.  The secondary benefit is for your heirs. What if at the time of your passing your loan balance is greater than the value of your home — what happens?

In a traditional mortgage scenario your heirs would be forced to sell the home at a loss and cover the difference. The terms of a HECM program mandates that neither you nor your heirs are personally liable to cover the difference if your home is sold for a loss. Simply put, it’s not your problem and no one is coming after your estate for a settlement.

Click here for more specific details on how the Reverse Mortgage for Purchase program works.

Sara Cornwall is a local Reverse Mortgage Advisor serving the entire state of Connecticut. Contact Sara and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

7 Worst HECM hReverse Mortgage Myths

reverse mortgage advisor connecticutReverse Mortgage was created to give our retiring generation a way to keep their homes and manage the ever increasing costs of life 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, it’s important to 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.  You are always the owner.

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.  Utilizing a reverse mortgage line of credit is a great way to guarantee your reverse mortgage equity is not affected by housing booms and busts.

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.

Sara Cornwall is a local Reverse Mortgage Advisor serving the entire state of Connecticut. Contact Sara and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

How A Widow Can Buy A Home Using A HECM Reverse Mortgage

reverse mortgage advisor connecticutIt’s a scenario all to familiar for the elderly in Connecticut…

A spouse passes away leaving behind a widow.  The remaining partner wants to move closer to family.  But there’s a catch – although the widow’s current home is owned outright, they would typically need to sell it before they could purchase another.   And they wish to move to an area where the median home price is much higher than the home available to sell.

Reverse mortgage for purchase may be an excellent option for this widow.  Let’s look at the scenario in detail:

Predicament #1: Widow needs to sell current home before purchasing a new home.

Solution: With a reverse mortgage for purchase, this widow would not need to sell the home immediately.  Any personal funds or assets used to purchase the new home could be replenished when the current home sells – and the funds from a reverse mortgage would supplement the initial funds needed.  This would allow her to move and get settled immediately.

Predicament #2: The cost of a home in the area the widow is moving is much higher than where she currently lives, meaning the proceeds from her current home sale will not cover the entire purchase.

Solution: When utilizing a reverse mortgage for purchase, her out of pocket cost would be substantially supplemented.  For example if she anticipates selling her current home for $200,000 and purchasing a home for $300,000, the reverse mortgage may cover the $100,000 difference allowing her to live mortgage payment free and best of all – near her family.

Reverse Mortgage for Purchase (aka: HECM for Purchase) is an FHA insured program for seniors 62 and over.  Although borrowers will not have a mortgage payment, they are still responsible for property taxes, homeowners insurance, HOA fees, and other general household expenses such as utilities and upkeep. 

Sara Cornwall is a local Reverse Mortgage Advisor serving the entire state of Connecticut. Contact Sara and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Only 3% of Seniors Use a HECM Reverse Mortgage to Purchase a Home – But Why?

reverse mortgage advisor connecticutWhy is it that only 2-3% of older Americans use the HECM Reverse Mortgage for Purchase option to buy a home?  Recent studies show that even with the option available to them, they still seek traditional funding or opt to pay cash.  Why is that?  Well, surveys have shown there are three main reasons:

1.) No one told them they could use a HECM reverse mortgage as a purchasing tool.  Unfortunately this happens far too often.  Real estate agents and lenders are either not aware of this option or are not educated enough to suggest it.  If you’re a senior considering purchasing a home, be sure to ask about using a reverse mortgage.  If you aren’t given proper information, contact a reverse mortgage expert such as myself.

2.) Real estate agents do not have enough knowledge to adequately educate the potential buyer about this option.  If you as a potential buyer find yourself in this situation, ask who you could talk to to learn more or seek out an expert yourself.

3.) The third reason seniors opt for traditional financing is the down payment required to use a reverse mortgage.  The down payment amount varies based on the price of the home, the age of the borrower, and current interest rates.

In order to apply for a HECM Reverse Mortgage for Purchase loan, you must be age 62 or older (each borrower on title must meet this criteria, although others residing in home do not), the home you are purchasing must be your new primary residence, you must have your “required investment” (down payment) from a HUD allowable source.

Sara Cornwall is a local Reverse Mortgage Advisor serving the entire state of Connecticut. Contact Sara and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Should You Pay Off A Traditional Mortgage With A HECM Reverse Mortgage?

reverse mortgage advisor connecticutA recently released university report by the Michigan Retirement Research Center and funded by the Social Security Administration showed that 55% of those utilizing a HECM reverse mortgage are using some of the proceeds to pay off a traditional mortgage.

So, when is this a good strategy?

1.) They’re living in a house they can’t afford

When many older adults reach retirement, they have to figure out out how to live on a fixed income and how to make their other retirement assets last for what is often decades.  Tapping into a HECM reverse mortgage will both eliminate the weight of the mortgage payment, and often even allow extra funds to be used throughout the remainder of their lives.

2.) They want to purchase a different home

It’s not uncommon for retirees to purchase a home in retirement.  But few know they can do this with a HECM reverse mortgage instead of a conventional one. This allows buyers to either preserve assets and income, or purchase a home that would typically be out of their price range.  Click here to learn more about the HECM Reverse Mortgage for Purchase program.

3.)  They don’t want to interrupt performing assets

For those with retirement investments that are doing well, drawing from these to make mortgage payments could be a bad move.  Using a HECM reverse mortgage to eliminate mortgage payments can be a win-win in the long run.

HECM reverse mortgages use the equity in your home to allow access to cash through monthly payments, a lump sum, or a line of credit while living mortgage payment free.  The borrower and the home must meet certain qualifications, such as age (62 or older), and HUD’s  home eligibility requirements, and they must also continue to pay and maintain certain responsibilities such as property taxes and homeowners insurance.

Sara Cornwall is a local Reverse Mortgage Advisor serving the entire state of Connecticut. Contact Sara and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

Does My Home Qualify for a Reverse Mortgage?

reverse mortgage advisor connecticutReverse Mortgages are a specialized loan available to homeowners 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, in Connecticut 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 paid down existing mortgages often times do and the reverse mortgage can eliminate the mortgage payment.

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 a reputable reverse mortgage advisor guide you in the many scenarios that are possible and the two of you can think creatively about your needs and desires.

Sara Cornwall is a local Reverse Mortgage Advisor serving the entire state of Connecticut. Contact Sara and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.

What Are Reverse Mortgage Borrowers Responsible For?

reverse mortgage advisor connecticutThe HECM Reverse Mortgage program in Connecticut continues to help thousands of retirees create the life of their dreams.  Homeowners, age 62 and over, are eligible for this type of loan.  A huge advantage is the borrowers will live mortgage payment FREE, but they will still have some responsibilities, including a small amount of financial obligations.

Here are the four main commitments borrowers of a reverse mortgage will continue to be required to take care of:

Homeowners Insurance

A reverse mortgage is like other conventional loans requiring the holder to purchase and maintain homeowners insurance, but unlike a conventional loan, this is not part of the loan itself and must be maintained by the homeowner as a separate entity. 

Property Tax

This too is the same as with a conventional loan. The reverse mortgage homeowner will need to pay the property tax. Depending on your financial need, assistance may be available to help pay or defer property taxes.  Your reverse mortgage advisor and your local human services office would have more information about such assistance.

Home Maintenance

Your home remains in your possession, so the maintenance of your home remains your responsibility.  Any applicable HOA fees also remain the responsibility of the borrower.


All utilities, such as electricity, gas, water, and trash will remain the borrowers responsibility.

Reverse mortgage is an individualized, specialized loan for those 62 and older that allows older Americans 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 advisor guide you to best suit your needs and desires.

Sara Cornwall is a local Reverse Mortgage Advisor serving the entire state of Connecticut. Contact Sara and learn if reverse mortgage is right for you.