Ask The Expert: Do I still own my home?

posted by: Mark Schmidt Reverse Mortgage Specialist (773) 504-9633

Yes. Title to the home always remains with the homeowner. Just like a conventional mortgage or home equity loan, the lender simply places a lien on the home to ensure that it is repaid upon the sale of the home.

As owner, you retain control of the property and can sell at any time with no prepayment penalty on the reverse mortgage. Also, as owner, you can still pass your home on to your heirs – the lender does not get it! As you know, the reverse mortgage must be repaid after you pass away. If one of your heirs wants to keep the home in the family, he/she can either refinance the reverse mortgage with a traditional mortgage in his/her name or pay off the balance owed with other assets or cash on hand. In most cases, however, the heirs have their own homes and choose to sell the house to settle the estate. In that case, your heirs would list your home and oversee the sale. Only in extreme circumstances (i.e. default) would the lender be in control of selling your home.

If you are considering a reverse mortgage, you should have a discussion with any heirs about whether they would keep the home or sell it after your passing.

Back to Reverse Mortgage Expert

Leave a Comment

Enter the word shown above in the textfield to the left.
  Yes, I would like to receive caregiving updates from