Laurie MacNaughton 
This past week an article on reverse mortgage appeared in the online edition of CNNMoney, a publication with a solid history of well-written, well-researched financial news. Last week’s piece, however, entitled Reverse mortgages: Safer, but far from risk-free, is chock full of inaccuracies, muddled concepts, and inflammatory comments, and is altogether unworthy of an esteemed publication. Just about the only way the reporting could be worse was if it included interviews with victims of alien abductions.
The article’s subtitle reads, About 10% of reverse mortgage borrowers go into default. Apparently, author Les Christie failed to read the report from which this statistic was taken. Or is it rather that CNNMoney editorial staff jobs have been outsourced to piecework editors in India? Whichever the case, the inaccurate reporting is inexcusable.
Accurate information on FHA-insured reverse mortgages is not hard to come by – but it does require at least a minimum of fact-checking, and – gasp – a careful reading of the publicly-available congressional reverse mortgage audit.
If this blogpost were simply a rant about yet another sensationalistic slam aimed at reverse mortgage, it would not be worth the reading, much less the writing.
But here’s the thing: something far larger is at stake here, namely, the financial well-being of an already fearful, highly vulnerable sector – Americans heading into retirement and those already well into their retirement years.
With every inflammatory, factually-inaccurate, poorly-researched piece, seniors grow yet more fearful of a product that has a long track record of success when used as part of a long-term financial plan. Les Christie and CNNMoney do seniors no favor by presenting obsolete objections, inaccurate figures, and wrongly-interpreted statistics.
Reverse mortgage was never intended to meet every financial goal in retirement. However, it can create a federally-insured financial safety net, an extra financial “bucket,” to draw upon in the retirement years.
If you would like to learn more about how FHA-insured reverse mortgage may help meet your retirement goals – or would just like to talk – give me a call. I always love hearing from you.
Laurie MacNaughton [NMLS 506562] is a freelance writer and Reverse Mortgage Consultant at Middleburg Mortgage. She can be reached at: 703-477-1183 or Laurie@MiddleburgReverse.com.