Home Equity

What Do Loan Officers Get From Reverse Mortgages?

By Tom Burchnell
loan officer reverse mortgage

Reverse mortgages have experienced significant popularity since their inception in the U.S. in 1988. This program is designed to help people of retirement age, generally, 62 or older, to stop making mortgage payments and instead receive payments that come from the equity they’ve built in their homes.

When retirement funds are short, people have options. It’s a great way for seniors to make ends meet if they’re in a pickle, or if they simply want to capitalize now on the equity they’ve built in their homes. However, there are a lot of fees associated with these sorts of loans that make them less desirable than they seem when you’re considering the basic facts (i.e., no more mortgage payment, you get money now, and your house still passes on to your heir!). It’s important that seniors looking into reverse mortgages understand the true costs associated with these types of loans and what the real costs of working with loan officers on a reverse mortgage is.

The Real Cost of Paying Reverse Mortgage Loan Officers

Essentially reverse mortgage loan officers, also known as reverse mortgage originators, earn a pretty penny helping people live out their days in their family home. The laws state that for a house appraised at under $125,000, reverse mortgage originators may charge up to $2,500. For homes under $200,000, they may charge 2% of the home’s value, and 1% on anything higher than $250,000. All told, the cap on reverse mortgage loan originator fees is $6,000. Chances are, if you’re looking at a reverse mortgage, that amount of money might be a lot more than what you’ve got to spend.

It’s important to note that in reverse mortgages, the homeowner is still responsible for many of the costs associated with homeownership, such as repairs, taxes, and insurance.

These loans generally have better interest rates than home equity loans, which makes them look like the more attractive option in a certain light, but what if there was another way to pull equity out of your home while still living in it?

The Newest Option for Staying in Your Home and Converting Your Equity

A sale-leaseback serves as an option that might be feasible for many folks who have considered a reverse mortgage. A residential sale-leaseback allows you to sell your home, converting the equity you’ve built in your home to cash, and lease it back. Essentially, you rent the very same home that you used to own.

We’ve always been told that our home is one of the most valuable investments that we’ll ever make. However, that equity doesn’t mean much if you have no means or desire to move and therefore hindered access to it. There are government-imparted restrictions on the amount of equity you can even receive from a reverse mortgage, but those restrictions aren’t found in sale-leaseback agreements.

Is a Sale-Leaseback Right for You?

Before you jump into a reverse mortgage or a high-interest home equity loan where you’ll only be able to get part of your money, consult a financial advisor to see if a sale-leaseback would work for you.

Key Takeaways

If you’re looking for a way to stay in your home during retirement, a reverse mortgage could be an option for you. However, working with a loan officer on a reverse mortgage may cost you more than you realize. Consult with your financial advisor to weigh the pros and cons between a reverse mortgage and a sale-leaseback before you make a decision.

Loan Officers
Reverse Mortgages
Tom Burchnell
Written by Tom Burchnell
Director of Product Marketing

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