Vermont Democratic Candidate Proposes Tax Annuity Lien Option For Senior Homeowners

image As Vermont gets ready for its primary on Tuesday, one Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor is proposing a reverse mortgage type of solution to help with the financial burdens on the state’s senior population.

According to the Rutland Herald, Democratic candidate Tom Costello would offer seniors a Tax Annuity Lien Option, which is essentially a reverse mortgage through the state.  Costello believes is would ease the property tax burden for older citizens struggling to pay for the most basic needs.  "They have the option of not paying taxes, and instead the state pays their taxes," Costello said. "That payment the state makes then becomes a lien on their real estate."   

He said the plan is revenue-neutral, and that when the resident dies or sells their home, the state recoups its tax payment, with interest.  "There’s no financial impact," Costello said.  Costello’s opponent, Freeman opposes the plan, and questions the wisdom of involving the state in the business of reverse mortgages.  "There’s no guarantee the state is going to recover the deferred taxes, a reverse mortgage is only a good idea in really rare circumstances."" Freeman said.

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