What is a reverse mortgage?
A reverse mortgage is a type of loan that lets homeowners 62 years or older convert part of the equity in their home into cash. The reverse mortgage was developed in order to let seniors use some of their accumulated wealth to cover basic living expenses and pay for healthcare. The loan is called a reverse mortgage because rather than making monthly payments on their home, homeowners receive monthly payments from a lender.
How do reverse mortgages work? There are several kinds of reverse mortgage loans, but the basic features are the same: homeowners borrow against the equity in their home and get a single lump sum, a fixed monthly payment or line of credit. The homeowner retains the title to the home, which acts as security for the loan. No repayment of the loan is required until the owners permanently move, sell the home or pass away.
What is reverse mortgage counseling? The Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) is the most common type of reverse mortgage. These loans are issued by private banks but are insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Before receiving an HECM reverse mortgage, the FHA requires the homeowner to get financial counseling and reverse mortgage information from an approved HECM counselor to ensure that the homeowner understands all of the terms of loan and what the loan means for their financial situation.
Applying for a reverse mortgage with help from ACCC.
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a nonprofit organization providing credit counseling, housing counseling and other financial services to consumers nationwide. ACCC's Certified Housing Counselors offer financial counseling in-person and over the phone to provide homeowners with the information and education required by the government to apply for an HECM reverse mortgage loan.
Advantages of a reverse mortgage
During your counseling session with ACCC, you'll receive reverse mortgage info and learn about the many advantages of reverse mortgage solutions:
- There are no credit rating or income requirements to apply for a reverse mortgage.
- The money you receive from a reverse mortgage can be applied to living expenses, healthcare or anything you choose to spend it on.
- You'll have no payments to make.
- The proceeds you receive are not taxable.
- A reverse mortgage may enable you to stay in your home longer and to remain independent.
- Your heirs inherit the home and keep the remaining equity after the balance of the reverse mortgage has been paid off.
Learn more about a reverse mortgage at ACCC, and about other housing services including home buyers class offered through ACCC.