Solutions Looking for a Problem
I stood at the paper towel machine waving my hands like a feeble magician trying to conjure paper towels when the thought occurred to me: I frankly can’t remember the last time I heard someone complain about pulling a paper towel from a dispenser. Self-dispensing paper towels solve a problem that was never a problem.
This got me to thinking: how many other fixes fix problems that aren’t problems? And if you can believe it, I actually came up with several – but that’s a different commentary altogether. It’s the corollary that hit home.
Remember functions? Those funky f(x) equations in math class? Basically, a function is a set of inputs and their corresponding outputs. Put another way, a function says if I do this, I get that – one solution for each problem. There is a finite list of outcomes.
Fortunately, most day-to-day issues are not direct functions, and multiple solutions exist for many of life’s problems. But often, the farther one travels into retirement the more limited the solution set becomes. Options become limited and outcome becomes a direct function of input.
Larger solution sets
In what I consider one of the most encouraging transformations in the history of the reverse mortgage product, I am seeing a regular stream of clients referred from the financial planning community. Seniors seeking informed input are turning to an informed source, namely their financial professional. Of course, I’ll never know how many financial professionals steer their senior clients away from reverse mortgage – but I do know an increasing number tell me they view reverse mortgage as a legitimate financial tool when used in concert with a comprehensive financial plan.
Financial professionals refer clients well before catastrophe strikes, before clients’ means have dwindled, before financial limits are reached – before the financial boat plunges over the cliff of desperation. Planners understand multiple inputs equal a bigger solution set.
Real solutions for real life
I hear the same stories everyone else in the financial industry hears: seniors unable to return to full-time employment. A spouse lost, and the resulting 50% drop in income. A catastrophic event – or a chronic condition that became financially catastrophic. Or, simply, too much life left at the end of the money.
Unlike the motion-detecting paper towel dispenser, reverse mortgage is a real solution to a real problem. When put in place preemptively, before it’s just a crisis management tool, reverse mortgage can be part of a sound retirement plan that maintains independence as long as possible and slows burn-through on other retirement instruments.
If you are – or someone you know is – looking for ways to increase financial options, give me a call. I always love hearing from you.
Laurie Denker MacNaughton [NMLS# 506562] · Reverse Mortgage Consultant, President’s Club · Middleburg Mortgage, a Division of Middleburg Bank · 20937 Ashburn Road, Suite 115 · Ashburn, Virginia 20147 · 703-477-1183 Direct · LMacNaughton@MiddleburgBank.com · www.middleburgmortgage.com/lauriem