What to do when retirement doesn’t go as planned

When retirement doesn’t go as planned…get a new plan

The Scottish poet Robert Burns warned us that the “best laid plans…often go awry.” Robbie knew, even in the 18th century, that no matter how much we planned, reality had a way of checking in usually when least expected.

Retirement planning used to be relatively easy. Fixed incomes and stable costs enabled our parents to plan for a secure retirement. Today we have longer life expectancies and the rising cost of just about everything has Baby Boomers wondering how they will survive the next  25-30 years.

retirement planning

In the early 2000s Rose and her husband Herb were looking forward to a safe and secure retirement. Taking advantage of record property values and the availability of easy credit, they refinanced their home. The plan was to take that dream vacation for their 50th wedding anniversary, help their granddaughter through college and help their grandson buy his first home. The remainder of the loan proceeds would provide a safety net for unexpected expenses.

Related: It’s time to have the dreaded “M” word conversation

Fast forward to today

Rose, now 84 years old is on her own. Herb passed away a few years ago, leaving her with 50% of his SSI and pension. The loan proceeds have been used up and she has been struggling to make a mortgage payment on about fifty percent of her planned retirement income.

When Rose told her kids she was in danger of losing her home the family, while sympathetic, was in no position financially to help.

Desperation overcomes skepticism

After an exhausting search of options, Rose and her family dropped by our office. They had heard “bad things” about Reverse Mortgages and were skeptical we would be able to help them. But their desperation overcame that skepticism and we sat down to decide if a reverse mortgage was the right fit for Rose.

Related: Easing the retirement squeeze

Reverse Mortgage to the Rescue

Let me explain…

Being able to stay in her home was priority one for Rose. But the monthly payments and regular living expenses were draining her retirement savings.

After a lengthy question and answer session we came up with a solution that would relieve Rose of that mortgage payment burden. It would also give her a “rainy day” fund to use as she saw fit.

Rose’s new retirement plan – “I used my home to stay at home”

Value Loan Amount Monthly Payment Line of




Cash at closing
Before Reverse Mtg $575,000






After Reverse Mtg $575,000



$185,868 $239,200


* Homeowner is responsible for payment of property taxes, homeowner's insurance and property maintenance

It became apparent that this solution wasn’t enough to give Rose the retirement security she sought. A few more questions revealed she was looking for additional monthly income and she would like to replenish her “rainy day” fund.

Rose built an even better retirement plan

Rose’s solution:  her very own personal retirement paycheck

Value Loan Amt Monthly Pmt Line of Credit Retirement paycheck Equity Reserve Cash at closing


retirement paycheck








* Homeowner is responsible for payment of property taxes, homeowner's insurance and property maintenance

Of course Rose still has to be prudent in using her Reverse Mortgage. Now she has the peace of mind knowing she will be able to stay in her home without having to make the mortgage payment of $805 and she will receive an additional $800 a month (tax free) for as long as she lives in her home.

Rose and her family are feeling a lot better about retirement now.

Related: Choosing the right reverse mortgage lender

The New Reverse Mortgage isn’t for everyone…but it could be!

If you’re still wondering if a Reverse Mortgage is the right solution for you but you’re not ready to sit down with one of our Reverse Mortgage Experts, then we’ll be happy to mail (or email) you Use Your Home to Stay at Home which is the official federally approved consumer booklet for those considering a reverse mortgage.

From the desk of Greg Cook

greg@reverselendingexperts.com; 951.265.4532​