Expert Warns Consumers: Beware of Inaccurate and Misleading Reverse Mortgage Articles

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Valerie VanBooven RN, BSN, PGCM, long-term care and reverse mortgage expert warns that many recent articles, such as those posted on Bankrate.com and in the Wall Street Journal contain misleading information, and leave out important facts about this federally regulated program. According to VanBooven, the so-called "experts" who are interviewed for quotes often have no involvement in the mortgage industry and do not understand the federal law that regulates these loans.

Reverse mortgages, also called Home Equity Conversion Mortgages, have gained popularity over the last few years, and as a result, have gained more media attention. Valerie VanBooven RN, BSN, PGCM, long-term care and reverse mortgage expert warns that many recent articles, such as those posted on Bankrate.com and in the Wall Street Journal contain misleading information, and leave out important facts about this federally regulated program.

"Some of the most important aspects of reverse mortgages are their ability to help seniors in crisis. A reverse mortgage can off-set the astronomical expense of long-term care, and can keep people off of Medicaid for longer periods of time, " states VanBooven.

Some use the equity for long-term care needs, to pay bills, pay off existing mortgages or debt, pay for prescription drug costs, home improvements, home modifications, or to simply be able to enjoy life a little more by traveling and enhancing their retirement cash flow. Many seniors use reverse mortgages to pay high property tax bills, and have even been saved from foreclosure and bankruptcy because they applied for a reverse mortgage.

Other seniors use reverse mortgage proceeds to fund advanced estate planning techniques. This includes increasing the value of their estate through life insurance purchases, planning ahead for future long-term care needs, assisting grandchildren with college funding, making charitable donations, and to convert IRA funds to Roth IRA funds, just to name a few.

Valerie VanBooven RN, BSN, PGCM (http://www.theltcexpert.com) warns that many newspaper, TV, radio and internet articles circulating in the media give inaccurate and misleading information about reverse mortgages. According to VanBooven, the so-called "experts" who are interviewed for quotes often have no involvement in the mortgage industry and do not understand the federal law that regulates these loans.

"The media attracts more readers, viewers, and listeners when they can spin an article or report to make it more exciting, scary, or dramatic. I would encourage each person considering a reverse mortgage to educate themselves through reputable websites and information, talk with a professional, and then make an appropriate decision. Consumers are able to make informed decisions when armed with the facts," says VanBooven.

Some websites to review include http://www.reversemortgage.org , and http://www.fanniemae.com .

Each consumer should make it his or her own responsibility to talk with an expert. Valerie VanBooven has written a tip and fact sheet that addresses all of the myths and misconceptions regarding reverse mortgages. You can find all of the information needed by visiting Valerie's blogs at http://www.seniorserviceselling.com or http://www.theltcexpert.com/site/371/valeries_blog.aspx

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VALERIE VANBOOVEN RN, BSN, PGCM
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