3 must-knows before taking out a reverse mortgage

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Approximately one-third of all Americans own their homes free and clear. Nevertheless, many seniors can end up losing their homes because they don't have the money to pay their property taxes, or they get hit with high medical bills or encounter a situation in which they need the equity from their home but can't qualify for a loan. For many, a reverse mortgage may be a great way to avoid losing their home. Over the last few years, reverse mortgages have gained a somewhat negative reputation in the real estate community. In some circumstances, however, these can be a tremendous blessing to seniors who may be at risk of losing their homes. How reverse mortgages work There are many different types of reverse mortgages. Unfortunately, there are quite a few scams in this area, so seniors looking at this option need to tread carefully. Here's how the HUD/Federal Housing Administration program works: "A reverse mortgage is a special type of home loan that lets you convert...