December 2008

How a Reverse Mortgage Made a Difference

In a previous post, I talked about how upset I was over a situation that a Senior had gotten herself into.   She had been referred to me to apply for a Reverse loan, as she was running out of money to pay her two mortgage payments and on top of this, she was extremely disabled as well.

I met with her to start the application process, when I discovered she owed too much on the two loans and the funds from a Reverse loan wouldn’t be enough to pay both of them off.   She had just received these loans in the beginning of ’08 and it was very obvious to me that she had been taken advantage of by the lender and the Loan Officer.

She was 100% disabled and receiving SSI, MediCal and Social Security and unable to work.   This was the only income that she had and she was in no position to be able to afford the two mortgage payments that she was now obligated to pay.   She was using the funds from the ELOC to make the payment on it and her actual income went to the other mortgage, care giving expenses, utilities, food and all other monthly bills.  Eventually she was going to run out of money and not be able to make any loan payments and then be faced with a foreclosure.

I was so angry at the lack of integrity, that the self-serving Loan Officer who originated her loan, was only concerned about their commission and felt nothing about this client’s security and the ability to remain in her home. 

But the good news is, I was able to help her and as of yesterday, she signed her loan documents for her Reverse loan. Fortunately, she received a small inheritance  last month and was able to provide enough money to buy down her existing loan balances so that the Reverse mortgage could be completed.

I feel very relieved for her, knowing that she can now stay in her house indefinitely because she won’t have to make any mortgage payments.   But I’m wondering how many other Seniors have used a conventional loan, taken the cash out to cover their expenses and are now out of money and facing foreclosure.

I bet that there are quite a few of them.  And what’s happened to those bad Loan Officers and Lenders?   They’re out of business but the damage that they caused by unscrupulous lending, is causing a lot of pain for families in this country.   And the Senior community has been wounded by them, too.

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Social Security Income

I am sharing an article on Social Security income that was written by Tom Hartfield.   He can be reached at tom@hartfieldFinancial.com

Estimating your future Social Security benefits used to be a difficult task, but not any longer. Every year, the Social Security Administration (SSA) provides a Social Security Statement to working taxpayers aged 25 and older. This statement, which is sent automatically two to three months before a taxpayer’s birthday, provides a report of how much the taxpayer and his or her employer paid in Social Security taxes and a summary of the estimated benefits the taxpayer may be eligible to receive now and in the future.

The Social Security Administration will also provide a statement to any taxpayer who requests one. To request a statement, simply submit a copy of the Social Security Statement request form (SSA-7004). You can obtain a copy by calling 800-772-1213 or by applying online at www.ssa.gov.

This form will ask you for a number of facts, including your name, Social Security number, date and place of birth, your mother’s maiden name, your previous year’s earnings and an estimate of your current and future earnings, and the age at which you plan to retire.
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Functional Flexibility Activities for Older Adults

By Lori Peppi Michiel, NASM, Certified Personal Trainer

For aging adults who have been inactive for six months or more and now are considering becoming active again or are post rehab, might want to consider flexibility training. It is a great way to start towards a healthier lifestyle if going forward from a de-conditioned state. This type of training may lack the high profile of cardiovascular exercise and strength training, but it can improve range of motion, decrease pain and soreness after exercise, improve posture and decrease muscle tension.  More importantly, stretching can make the difference in comfort when performing tasks such as putting a shirt or blouse on in the morning, reaching for a cup of tea or coffee or turning ones head when driving to be sure the coast is clear, etc.

Consider that most research studies suggest combining flexibility training with other activities such as balance, core, muscular endurance and (resistance training) into their workouts, along with some form of cardiovascular exercise. They all play an important roll in function.

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