Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Guide to Reverse Mortgages

What are reverse mortgages? They are a special kind of home equity loan for homeowners aged 62 and older. The homeowners receive a portion of their home equity as cash. The loan is repaid when borrower either dies, sells his home, or moves out of the home. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau recommends that you get HUD-approved housing counseling before you decide to get a reverse mortgage. The blog reported that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has recently updated its guide to reverse mortgages. This update was needed due to new government rules concerning reverse mortgages. The changes are:
  • first year payout limits - there are now limits on how much money you can get from the loan during the first year.
  • new protections for the non-borrowing spouse.
You can learn more about reverse mortgages by reading the guide here.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The November/December Elder Update is Available

The Florida Department of Elder Affairs publishes a bimonthly newsletter, the "Elder Update", for Florida Seniors. The current issue includes the following articles:
  •  Always Hire a Licensed Contractor
  •  Vet Trio Recalls Events of World War II
  •  She was a Marine- the story of a woman in the Marines in 1943
  •  The WWII Disaster No One Knew About
  •  2014's Best Intergenerational Communities
You can download the current issue here. Alternatively, you can sign up for a print subscription here.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

How to Avoid Credit Card Hacking Over The Holidays

Credit card fraud can happen as the result of thieves finding a credit card billing statement in your trash, or  by someone taking a picture of your credit card when you are checking out, or someone could hack into an online account. You can read more about credit card fraud on the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) consumer information page here. To avoid fraud, the FTC recommends that you:
  • Don't give out your account information to a company unless you called them and know that they are reputable company.
  • Open your bills promptly and check for questionable charges.
  • Carry only one credit card for a shopping trip.
 Here is a link to an article about "elder fraud" and services that have started up to help prevent elder fraud. 
 In the short video below, Marietta, the editor-in-chief of the Consumer Action Handbook, discusses how you can avoid being a victim of credit card hacking this holiday season:

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

New Book About a Famous Nonagenarian Athlete

Olga Kotelko was a famous nonagenarian athlete. She held twenty-six world records for World Masters track and field events and won 750 gold medals. She started competing in track and field events at age 77.  She was an amazing athlete who held 17 world records in the 90-95 year old age category. Below is a video interview with Olga Kotelko:

You can read more about Olga Kotelko and about her secrets to successful aging in: "What Makes Olga Run?" by Bruce Grierson. You can borrow this book from the Pasco County Library System.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Social Security Increase for 2015

The Social Security Administration has announced a 1.7% benefit increase starting in January 2015. This cost of living adjustment (COLA) will provide an extra $22 a month to the average retired worker. Do you have an online Social Security Account? If you do not yet receive Social Security benefits, you can use this online account to estimate your future benefits. If you are already receiving Social Security benefits, you can use the online account to manage your benefits.

Below is a video from Social Security which leads you through the process of setting up an account. If you would like one-on-one help to set up your account, a Social Security representative will be at New River Library this Thursday, December 4th, at 1:00 pm. New River Library is located at 34043 State Road 54 in Zephyrhills, Fl.