Chicago Tribune: Reverse Mortgages Becoming Better Options for Seniors

A columnist writing for the Chicago Tribune changed his tune on reverse mortgages in a piece this week that explored how these loans can offer retirees benefits that other financing alternatives cannot.

Elliot Raphaelson of the Tribune Content Agency specifically touched on the line of credit feature as one of the “more important potential advantages” of reverse mortgages, citing the new book from industry veteran Shelley Giordano as the basis for the views set forth throughout the column.

Giordano, who is principal reverse mortgage consulting firm Longevity View Associates, and also chair of the Funding Longevity Task Force, describes various facets of the reverse mortgage product in her book, “What’s the Deal with Reverse Mortgages?”

Covered topics include options such as fixed versus variable loans, the nuances of credit lines, mortgage fees, as well as the merits of home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) vs. Home Equity Conversion Mortgages.

“In my opinion, if you intend to maintain a line of credit for a long period of time, then the HECM has significant advantages over the HELOC, if you can obtain a HECM with very low (or no) closing costs,” Raphaelson writes. 

Raphaelson also discusses updates to the non-borrowing spouse policy that allow the widow/widower to remain living in the home following the death of their borrowing spouse, and also, vaguely, the terms and reasons for the Financial Assessment. 

Read the Chicago Tribune column.

Written by Jason Oliva

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