A quality that Millennials are embracing at full capacity these days is respect for their elders. They work in industries where they will be responding to them on social media, processing their banking transactions, or walking them through new technology. Patience and understanding are good virtues when helping clients who are in or approaching their golden years.
This is why real estate companies, especially those with Millennial employees, should be vigilant to help seniors who are physically able to do so stay in their homes. Financial hardship, other than health problems, is usually the source of seniors leaving their long-time homes.
Financial Resources for Keeping Seniors at Home
Not everyone can be like Edith Macefield, the real life inspiration for the Disney film “Up,” and financially be able to turn down a million dollar offer to move elsewhere. There are many resources for seniors and the elderly to maintain the current home they live in, when money is the main issue, and here is a quick list:
- USDA grants and loans toward home repairs – Section 504 under the USDA home loans program for rural housing provides grants to those aged 62 or over who may have difficulty otherwise obtaining a loan for repairs. Specifically, if these citizens have health and safety hazards in their home (examples: leak in a roof, mold, or adapting a home for the differently abled), the grant valued at a maximum of $7,500 will pay for them to remove or repair such issues at no cost to them.
These grants must be used by the elderly in a modest home in an area the USDA designates as “rural.” You may be surprised to know some suburbs qualify for this grant, so plug the applicable address into this link to see if you or any elders you know qualify. There are also loans for repair, as well as home purchase through the USDA. These loans are desired for their aim toward low income individuals looking to obtain modest housing at very low interest rates.
- Keeping up with mortgages in the face of unemployment – With concerns about social security and inflation, retirement has become a bit trickier of a goal to obtain these days. Seniors may find themselves working after the average retirement age of 62. What happens when the jobs of these seniors gets phased out by new technology or outsourcing? They may still be paying off mortgages and now are faced with the stress of defaulting. Organizations like Keep Your Home California help citizens with Unemployment Mortgage Assistance, Mortgage Reinstatement Assistance through a one-time payment of up to $54k, Transition Assistance to help people after short sales or foreclosures move into new properties, and the Principal Reduction Program. If you want to see if you or a senior you know qualifies, or to ask them for resources in other states, contact 888-954-KEEP (5337) Monday through Saturday.
- Charities and Crowd-Sourcing – With the help of their kids, and grandkids, seniors are making their presence known in social media. The best tool at their disposal is using the world at their fingertips to try and maintain their housing. With sites like Go Fund Me, YouCaring, IndieGoGo, and CrowdRise, our seniors can post a campaign to raise money and then use outlets like Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to make their story known. Then, they or the people around them can help their cause gain attention by contacting local news outlets and sharing the materials online. There are also charities to check out, such as Dream Fund, the Dream Foundation, Second Wind Dreams, or contacting national organizations like the Administration on Aging.