Eliminating fixed-rate HECM loan makes no sense

Fixing FHA's reverse mortgage program

Editor's note: This is the second of a three-part series. See Part 1.The first article in this series indicated that major changes were needed in the HECM program to a) reduce its appeal to those with short time horizons looking for the largest possible immediate "cash-out," who impose the largest costs on FHA; and b) to increase its reach to seniors who need steady financial help to stay in their homes during their retirement years.The one concrete proposal directed to this objective, stated in a letter FHA Commissioner Carol Galante wrote to U.S. Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), is to eliminate the fixed-rate standard HECM. This is the option most used by seniors looking for the maximum cash they can draw.Eliminating the fixed-rate standard HECMHowever, eliminating the fixed-rate standard HECM would not eliminate the ability of seniors to use all of their HECM borrowing power to draw cash. They could continue to do this with the fixed-rate Saver, which is identical except that th...