What is a reverse mortgage?
A reverse mortgage allows homeowners of a certain age, 62 years and older, to borrow from their home’s equity without having to make monthly mortgage payments. As the borrower the homeowner may then choose to take funds in a lump sum, line of credit or via structured monthly payments. The repayment of the loan is required when the last surviving borrower vacates the home permanently.
On a traditional “forward” loan, you make payments and the amount you owe is reduced while the equity you have on the property increases over time. A reverse mortgage is the opposite. You make no regular payments, so as you draw out funds and as interest accrues on the loan, the balance grows and your equity position in the property becomes smaller.
How does it work?
First, you must access a portion of your home’s equity. The percentage is based on age of youngest borrower. When the mortgage is reversed, you make no monthly mortgage repayments. The funds you receive from a reverse mortgage are tax-free, and may be used for virtually anything. The loan from your reverse mortgage is repaid when you pass away or sell your home. After that, any remaining equity belongs to your heirs.
Something important to note is that in addition to the fact that there is never a payment due on a reverse mortgage, and there is also no prepayment penalty of any kind. In other words, you can make a payment at any time, up to and including payment in full without penalty.
How much can you receive on a reverse mortgage?
There are several factors that dictate the loan amount, including the age of the youngest borrower, value of the home or the HUD lending limit (whichever is less), the interest rates in effect at the time, any costs to obtain the loan (which are subtracted from the principal limit), and any existing mortgages and liens (which must be paid in full). The current HUD lending limit for 2019 is $726,525.
If there are multiple borrowers, the age of the youngest borrower will lower the amount available because the terms allow all borrowers to live in the home for the rest of their lives without having to make a payment.
Weigh the costs and benefits of taking out a reverse mortgage.
A reverse mortgage doesn’t work for everyone. If you do the math and find that, even with a reverse mortgage you will still be struggling to get by, it may be best not to use your equity at this timed. Do your research and plan carefully. Will the funds and accrued interest add up to more than your home is worth? For those who are thinking of moving to a new home anyway, it may be better to move now. Don’t use your reverse mortgage as a temporary solution.
For professional assistance with mortgages, look no further than Stonebridge Mortgage Group. You can rely on Stonebridge Mortgage Group to help guide you through the home buying process from start to finish. We help get you pre-approved for a mortgage and help with your real estate loans and other mortgage solutions, both residential and commercial. We serve the greater Portland area and are in Gresham, Oregon. Don’t wait to get quality assistance with buying your home!
Important Information to Understand
- At the conclusion of a reverse mortgage, the borrower must repay the loan and may have to sell the home or repay the loan from other proceeds.
- Charges will be assessed with the loan, including an origination fee, closing costs, mortgage insurance premiums and servicing fees.
- The loan balance grows over time and interest is charged on the outstanding balance.
- The borrower remains responsible for property taxes, hazard insurance and home maintenance, and failure to pay these amounts may result in the loss of the home.
- Interest on a reverse mortgage is not tax-deductible until the borrower makes partial or full repayment.