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Lewes, Delaware
Jim's Towing Service
September 1, 2006     Cape Gazette
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September 1, 2006

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CAPE GAZETTE. Friday, September I - Monday, Sepiber 4,2006 - 73 Mom's best bet is areverse mortgage NEW LISTING- CONLEY'S CHAPEL VILLAGE HOUSE CALLS Edith Lank last September we decided to buy a two-family house. Actually, I bought the house, so the mortgage is in my name only. I would like to make sure that when I pass away, they can con- tinue with the existing mortgage Dear Ms. Lank: Thank you for your advice on the reverse mort- gage. At first, Mom was unsure about getting one, but now that her husband has passed away - he died last week - time is of the essence to get the paperwork start- ed. I really don't know much about how to start the process. I've been in touch with a mort- gage company in her area - West Palm Beach, Fla. - but the compa- ny rep seemed too eager to help and it sent up a red flag. Perhaps he was just being helpful, consid- ering our situation. Can you give me any advice on what to expect when helping my mother get a reverse mortgage? - M. Dear M.: You and your mother can ask if the mortgage company handles the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage plan, the type sponsored by the Federal OVER AN ACRE OF LAND IN GEORGETOWN Housing Administration. Housing without having to start all over and Urban Development will again. Can I put her name on the require your mother to get coun- seling so she understands just what would be involved. That should help ease your concerns. Is granddaughter safe? Dear Ms Lank: First of all, I am 80 years of age. I lived alone for 20 years in a large Victorian house and a couple of years ago, mentioned to my granddaughter - who had spent a good deal of her childhood there and had fond thoughts of it - that I would prob- ably have to sell the house and move into something with less maintenance. She then offered to move in with me, along with her husband and little boy. Everything was great until she had her second child. Even though the house was large, no one had any privacy. I would go to bed early so they could have some time to themselves. Finally, WET BASEMENTS MADE DRY i FREE INSPECTIONS - FREE ESTIMATES BASEMENT REPAIR mortgage without a whole lot of red tape and without engaging a lawyer? They are so expensive. I'm sure there would be costs incurred, but having a lawyer would up the expense 100-fold. Please let me know what your thoughts are. Perhaps you have a better solution. - via email Answer: You can talk the mat- ter over directly with your mort- gage lender. Most banks don't call in a mortgage when property is inherited by a spouse. Ask if it would be the same with a grand- daughter. You should talk with a lawyer, though, to double-check that ownership of the house will really go to your granddaughter with no problems. Loss on sale of home Dear Edith: The neighborhood is going downhill, and when I sell my house I'll have a loss. If I had a profit, it would be taxable, so, can I deduct the loss on my next income tax return? - hR. Dear.L,R.:]'m afraid not. The Inernal Revenue Service says it's the same as a loss on the sale of an old couch. Agent didn't disclose Dear Edith: If the broker involved reads your column, I'm pretty sure he will know it is about him. Please let me know what you think. We put an offer in on a house back in May, contingent upon a satisfactory engineer's report. The engineer found significant problems upon the inspection, so we decided not to buy the house after all. Because of the seriousness of the problems, our engineer said the agent would have to disclose the problems to anyone who inquired about the property. Not only is it not safe or healthy to live in that house, the cost to fix it could be $30,000 and take months. He discovered the foun- dation has severely rotted and there is toxic mold, just to name a couple of problems. A friend of mine called that same agent to inquire about the house, and he didn't disclose any of that information. When she came right out and asked if there were any known problems with the property, he said "no." I am concerned that someone could get stuck with this house. I know most people hire engineers - but not all. I am so thankful we did. Is there any action I should take in this situation? - via ema// Answer: I'm sorry to hear your story. Not only could that agent end up in trouble, but so could the seller because of his actions. I'm not sure, though, that there's much you should do. Perhaps a call to the managing broker in that office would be in order to alert him or her to the situation. Not all mold is toxic, by the way, and sometimes it takes a dif- ferent specialist to settle that ques- tion. Editor's note: Edith Lank is a past director of the National Association of Real Estate Editors and the Real Estate Educators Association. She will personally respond to any questions sent to east expensive home in this development. Completely renovated in 2006.; just like brand new! 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