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Mortgagee Letter 2008-38

David vs. Goliath in the World of Reverse Mortgages


Few people have made a more vibrant impact on the reverse mortgage sector than Atare E. Agbamu. In his work as a broker, originator, columnist, book author, activist and consultant, Agbamu has been a champion of the reverse mortgage product and a tireless advocate for older consumers  the product was designed to support.Click to continue

Beyond ML 2008-38: The 800-Pound Can of Worms


After more than two years of single-handedly urging U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) to revoke Mortgagee Letter 2008-38, it finally listened, under legal and political pressure. HUD issued Mortgagee Letter 2011-16 on Tuesday, April 5, 2011, rescinding the odious Mortgagee Letter 2008-38 (Dec. 5, 2008), the cause of ongoing litigation brought by a widower and two widows (the “AARP case” March 8, 2011), among hundreds of seniors across the America who have been recklessly hurt by the application of ML 2008-38 as alleged in the federal lawsuit.Click to continue

Forward on Reverse: An assault on fairness ... quash Mortgagee Letter 2008-38 (Part II)

Quash Mortgagee Letter

In part one of "An Assault on Fairness: Quash Mortgagee Letter 2008-38," we looked at the assumptions behind ML-08-38 and concluded that they are severely flawed. We also affirmed that ML-08-38 represents a disturbing departure from historical Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) non-recourse policy. We now turn to why the arms-length rules in ML-08-38 turn off seniors’ relatives and cost taxpayers money.Click to continue

Forward on Reverse: An assault on fairness ... quash Mortgagee Letter 2008-38 (Part I)

Quash Mortgagee Letter

Author’s note: In the dying days of the Bush Administration (Dec. 5, 2008), the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) issued Mortgagee Letter 2008-38 (ML-08-38). ML-08-38 is a raw deal for America’s seniors who have taken, who are taking or who plan to take Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) reverse mortgages, the dominant program in the U.S. reverse mortgage market. “An Assault on Fairness: Quash Mortgagee Letter 2008-38, Part I” shows why we believe ML-08-38 is a raw deal for seniors and their heirs/estate, and why we are asking the U.S.Click to continue

Forward on reverse ... Full disclosure: We were wrong on HECM non-recourse policy

Rita Monita of Lake Hekmo, Minn. was 75-years-old when she took out a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) reverse mortgage in 1997. The extra cash from the government-insured loan dramatically transformed her life, for the better.Click to continue