A Brief Guide to Equity Options in Your State

Reverse mortgages have become hot topics among America’s senior population. These types of mortgages are designed to connect borrowers with their home equity in the form of cash payments. Lenders may take the form of retail bank, state or municipal government and specialized mortgage lenders and/or brokers.

FHA Loan Lending Limits and HUD Lenders

The FHA mortgage limits are a critical factor in reverse mortgages. FHA limits are closely related to the HUD Home Equity Conversion Mortgage. These lending limits are set on a county-by-county basis across the country. Across Maine most of the counties are consistently set at the national average. Only a few counties have higher FHA limits and those are in the Portland area.

Of all reverse mortgage borrowers over 90% use the federally insured HECM. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is not a direct lender, but the administering body for the HECM. Borrowers interested in a HECM are advised to choose a lender from the HUD-approved lender list.

Single Purpose Reverse Mortgages from Maine Government Lenders

A common problem among seniors is property tax costs and high dollar home improvement and repairs. Many states have special single purpose reverse mortgages for such purposes:

  • The State of Maine’s Elderly Tax Deferral Program allows senior citizens an option to qualify for a deferral loan—at 6% interest—that pays for their property tax off a loan taken on their home value. No payments and no credit check.
  • No formal deferred property loan program exists in the state. But senior homeowners in dire need of home improvements are urged to check with their town or city government offices to see if any DPLs exist. These types of programs are often called property rehabilitation loan.

Reverse Mortgage Providers for Maine Senior Citizens

The following is only a sample of the hundreds of lenders available to serve borrowers with reverse mortgages in Maine.

Equity America Mortgage

This Maine and New Hampshire lender has experience with a variety of reverse mortgage products.

Financial Freedom

One of the largest reverse mortgage lenders in the country and possibly the largest volume lender. FF offers borrowers three types of products: the federally insured HECM, Fannie Mae Home Keeper and its own proprietary product, and FF Cash Account Advantage program. The Cash Account program is offered by many other lenders as well.

Interate Mortgage Company

Interate is regionally based company and a long-time HUD approved lender for the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) program. The company prefers to involve the entire family in the reverse mortgage process since in many cases any heirs will inherit the mortgage.