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Ever since President Kennedy designated May as Senior Citizens Month more than half a century ago, communities nationwide have joined in an annual celebration of our elder population. Now known as Older Americans Month, May is an opportunity to recognize and honor the many ways mature adults have contributed and continue to contribute to their communities and to the larger society of which they’re a part. This year’s theme, Safe Today, Healthy Tomorrow ties in with our reverse mortgage Safety series. (The first post focused on medical alert pendants and bracelets).
Older Americans Month is an ideal opportunity for reverse mortgage professionals to recognize the contributions your elder clientele make to the area where they live, while simultaneously acknowledging how important it is to care for ourselves and one another as we grow older in order to remain vital members of society.
In the third millennium, we’re continuing to redefine what “old” means. Whereas once people were considered old at 40, today that’s barely middle-aged! And while 65 was introduced as retirement age because people weren’t expected to live much beyond it, today’s seniors are, collectively, hale, hearty and rarin’ to go at this comparatively youthful “Third Stage” of life.
Here’s a handy “Facts and Features” page for Older Americans Month 2014, from the U.S. Census Bureau. A few of the salient points for reverse mortgage specialists:
- There were 43.1 million adults 65 and older in 2012; this number is expected to more than double, to 92 million, by 2060 — that’s 1 in 5 U.S. residents!
- 80.7% of those 65 and older own their own homes as of 2013.
- 61.8% had a computer in their home as of 2011.
- 21.3% of men 65 and older are still working (compared with just 13.4% for women, pointing up possible gender discrepancies.)
How can you celebrate and educate your mature prospects and clients? The question contains the answer: the more information/education a senior has, about their demographic, work opportunities, finances and reverse mortgages, the more they will be able to celebrate their later years secure in the knowledge that they’re making smart decisions to prepare for a safe, healthy future.