What is a Reverse Mortgage?
It’s a loan that allows homeowners 62 years and older to access a portion of the equity in their homes for use in retirement. Reverse mortgages are also known as home equity conversion mortgages (HECMs), which are insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Note that not all reverse mortgages are federally insured.
What Are The Benefits?
A reverse mortgage from CrossCountry Mortgage, Inc. can provide you with the following benefits:
- You can stay in your home — you don’t need to sell it for access to funds.
- The equity in your home becomes a source of income when you need it and can help you pay bills and other expenses.
- The credit line is revolving, which means that any payments you make replenish the credit available to you.
- You can receive your funds as a monthly income stream, in a lump sum payout, or as a combination of the two.
- After years of paying on your mortgage and building equity, you can finally make that equity work for you.
- This loan may help you with your financial and retirement planning.
You must meet the following criteria to be eligible for a reverse mortgage:
- You must be at least 62 years old.
- You must take HECM-approved counseling (available at little to no cost) and receive a certificate of completion required during the application process.
- You must live in the home. If you move out for more than 365 consecutive days, repayment on borrowed funds is due.
- Your current mortgage balance must be low enough that it can be paid off with your new reverse mortgage.
Reverse mortgages follow FHA property eligibility standards, so your home must be one of the following:
- A family home with 1–4 units
- A condominium unit in a manufactured housing unit (must be on a permanent foundation)
Before you apply for a reverse mortgage, you must first consult a HUD housing counselor. This will help you determine whether a reverse mortgage is right for your situation.
How Repayment Works
Unlike a traditional mortgage in which you make monthly payments, a reverse mortgage uses your home equity to provide you with a source of income for a defined period of time. Income from a reverse mortgage might not be available for the entire time you will live in the home. The mortgage becomes due when you die, sell your home, or move out. If you pass away, the loan can be repaid with a life insurance policy or through heirs selling the home or by refinancing the reverse mortgage into a new loan.
While you don’t have to make monthly mortgage payments, you’re still responsible for property taxes and homeowner’s insurance. You must also keep the home in good condition.
Partners & Dependents
If you have a partner, consider whether he or she should be a co-borrower. Any dependents should be prepared to move should you and your partner pass away or move out.
How Is Interest Applied?
Interest is added to the loan balance each month. You don’t have to make monthly interest payments, but any payments you do make will go toward any accrued interest.