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CNBC: HECMs a Useful Tool or Bad Idea?

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Recent HECM Changes Opening Minds

reverse mortgage newsAre reverse mortgages a useful retirement tool or a bad move for today’s retiree? That is the question addressed in CNBC’s recent article in age-based investing.

It should come as no surprise but anytime you turn conventional wisdom on its head you will get resistance from most. The Home Equity Conversion Mortgage turns the conventional American wisdom of paying one’s home off before retirement and keeping the home encumbered upside down. However in today’s world of retirees being ‘upside down’ in retirement preparedness more financial professionals and media pundits are beginning to question conventional wisdom when it comes to home equity.

The column begins by citing recent improvements in consumer protections increasing the comfort of financial advisors recommending the loan. Ironic considering that many of the HECM’s recent changes met strong resistance yet they may be the very factor  that finally expands the program’s marketshare which has hovered at a mere 2% of eligible households for years.
Rita Cheng, a certified financial planner and CEO of Blue Ocean Global Wealth said…

Download a transcript of this episode here.

Looking for more reverse mortgage news, commentary and technology? Visit ReverseFocus.com today.

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Editor in Chief: HECMWorld.com
 
As a prominent commentator and Editor in Chief at HECMWorld.com, Shannon Hicks has played a pivotal role in reshaping the conversation around reverse mortgages. His unique perspectives and deep understanding of the industry have not only educated countless readers but has also contributed to introducing practical strategies utilizing housing wealth with a reverse mortgage.
 
Shannon’s journey into the world of reverse mortgages began in 2002 as an originator and his prior work in the financial services industry. Shannon has been covering reverse mortgage news stories since 2008 when he launched the podcast HECMWorld Weekly. Later, in 2010 he began producing the weekly video series The Industry Leader Update and Friday’s Food for Thought.
 
Readers wishing to submit stories or interview requests can reach our team at: info@hecmworld.com.

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1 Comment

  1. Although we are marketers and salespeople, we need to be accountable and at least somewhat realistic. If the rate of case number assignments continue at the same pace as June, July, and August (the three latest months for which HUD has released case number assignment information), our endorsement count for this fiscal year could go below 48,000.

    So while we keep telling ourselves that the HECM is now a better product for financial planning purposes and with financial assessment, a safer product for consumers, our case number assignment numbers seem slow to reflect it and may result in making this fiscal year the worst for endorsements since fiscal 2005.

    Today we have better catch phrases such as reversing conventional wisdom and the standby reverse mortgage strategy but few originators seem to understand the product; their math many times proves it. We may be doing well at presenting at conventions of the financial advising community, but many times that is more due to the thirst for newer topics with enthusiastic speakers than acceptance of what we present. Eventually it should make a difference in our numbers but how much of a difference and when?

    The product is dynamic and has a plethora of uses but we seem to limit its use far too much in our presentations. HECMs are a product which can be turned into a true retirement cash flow tool when used in a prudent manner by the borrower. A HECM is not a retirement planning tool but rather a retirement cash flow tool. It is not in the planning phase when a HECM becomes a tool but rather in the execution of that plan.

    As the adage goes: “The proof of the pudding is in the eating.” If we cannot see what it is we are purporting reflected in our case number assignments and endorsements, then we need to reexamine our claims. We are not there yet but nine months goes quickly and there are no signs of an immediate turn around.


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