In our business, we have to constantly think on our feet, be creative, and find solutions to previously unprecedented and unforeseen problems. According to an article published in Reverse Mortgage Daily, the creative thinking of The Oregon Department of Transportation might have set a new precedent in a special reverse mortgage case.
The circumstances surrounding the case began last spring when the ODOT needed Patsy Burnsed’s land in order to complete the Brookwood Parkway/Helvetica Road Interchange Project on U.S. Highway 26. However, following the established condemnation process, in this situation, would’ve left Burnsed homeless.
She had taken out a reverse mortgage on her home and reverse mortgage guidelines stipulate that if the borrower no longer lives in the primary residence for more than 12 consecutive months, the loan must be repaid.
Because of Burnsed’s special circumstances the ODOT agreed to purchase a home with comparable living conditions so that Burnsed could continue to live comfortably during her retirement. While none of the options ODOT presented were to Burnsed’s liking, she was able to find a home and the ODOT paid about $200,000 dollars for it.
In the meantime, the ODOT has offered $196,000 to buy Burnsed’s old home. Both Burnsed’s old home and her replacement have cost more than the ODOT had originally anticipated. But the eventual sale of Burnsed’s new home will allow the ODOT to recuperate most of the funds invested.
The solution to this unique situation has established a possible precedent in future reverse mortgage condemnation cases, although the Oregon Department of Transportation has yet to create a specific policy to deal with condemned homes with a reverse mortgage in the future.
While Burnsed’s case came under unique circumstances, it demonstrates a creative and forthcoming problem solving ability. The constant curve balls in the business are there to keep us on our feet because nothing is impossible to solve, some problems just take a little to solve than others.
Read more about how the ODOT finds a way forward in reverse mortgage case here.