When trying to choose the right reverse mortgage lender, you need to know what type of reverse mortgage you need. Most reverse mortgages are FHA insured Home Equity Conversion Mortgages or HECM loans. HECM reverse mortgages account for over 90% of reverse mortgage loan closings.
Be very careful when choosing. There are several legitimate mortgage lenders out there that offer reverse mortgages, but there are illegitimate ones as well. Be sure to pick one with a good reputation. Ask your lender if they are setup with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
It is important that you choose the right reverse mortgage lender. A number of reverse mortgage companies can be found online. These companies promise the best of services, however, it is important for you to conduct detailed research before choosing the best reverse mortgage lender. Not all of the lenders are worthy of receiving your business, and a lot of them are involved in reverse mortgage scams. Take your time to know about your friends’ or relatives’ experience with their reverse mortgage lender.
There are private mortgage lenders, which may lend at higher amounts or higher loan-to-values. These are less regulated than HECM and if you need a large private loan you should scrutinize the lender thoroughly. Counseling is also strongly advised before you purchase one of these loans–it can help you understand the disclosures.
Since most reverse mortgage are the HECM programs, it is very likely you will have the chance to pick and choose between reverse mortgage lenders. Below are several tips on how to find a good reverse mortgage lender and the main topics you will need to question.
Finding a good lender
- National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association (NRMLA) provides education and serves as advocates in the reverse mortgage lending industry. You might want to consider only lenders who are members of NRMLA and follow their published Code of Ethics.
- Start online to see the lenders available in your area. Online searching is an easy and efficient way to get your search going.
- American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) represents seniors on many issues including reverse mortgage lenders.
- Get counseling. In fact, HUD requires that borrowers obtain counseling via phone or in person before being allowed to take out a reverse mortgage. Part of this counseling should include how to evaluate reverse mortgage lenders and understand disclosures.
We hope this helps with your incredibly important decision. Contact us now if you have further questions.