For the industry to thrive, the message must change

Financial Planners

If you want to keep growing, it’s time for a dramatic change in the reverse mortgage industry. As an industry, we penetrate less than his 3% of the total addressable market. If 97% of seniors who could have a reverse mortgage either don’t have one, don’t know about it, or mistakenly believe all the negative hype about the industry, then we The time has come to change things in a positive way.

Our industry suffers from duplication of marketing. We all go to the same conferences, talk about the same topics, in the same ways, and about the same things. We are all erroneously pursuing the same talking point, and we are doing it to older people who mostly ignore us.

Instead of attacking each other, we are fighting each other for 3% of the pie when we need to change tactics to get more business.

Of all the sales, what is the hardest to close? First-time reverse customers. Customers new to reverse mortgages have a high mountain to climb, as they have to overcome not only the negative rhetoric about the reverse mortgage product itself, but also the advertising in the industry.

Jarred Talmadge, Founder and Author of Reverse Mortgages.
Jared Talmadge

Futures cannot just sit on the sidelines and be left to paid salespeople talking about how reverse mortgages are the same as forward mortgages. We can’t go on with that because the world doesn’t believe it and probably never will. It’s time to change our collective thinking.

This is one of the things I’m trying to do with my book. No Place Like Home: Home Care and New Payment Methods for SeniorsHome health agencies are nothing new to reverse mortgage lenders. But for agencies, we are all new.

We have been discussing this issue for decades. There is a wave of baby boomers coming who need our help. Now is the time for us to step up, change our message, and change how we market ourselves and our industry.

It’s time.

Baby boomers are starting to realize that life in retirement isn’t as secure as they once thought. Our clients are reluctant to go to nursing homes because the pandemic is still fresh in everyone’s minds. They want to age on the fly and we can reframe retirement by selling to financial and estate planners. We can also market to even the general public by discussing how our products can change the retirement trajectory of seniors.

As an industry, we can continue to fight each other over the scrap that the traditional mortgage business leaves us. Even a small change from 3% to 5% would change everything for all of us.

So why not, as an industry, decide to collectively change the way we market ourselves? Effectively doubling your business will not give you more than 10% market penetration.

People like Dave Ramsey may not like our products. But instead of figuring out why his information is outdated, why not learn from how he built his business? We will definitely lose.

But if we can learn from him about market expansion, and we can double our market penetration as an industry, what market wouldn’t benefit from doubling our business? Marketing to industry is not a zero-sum game.

For me to win doesn’t mean you have to lose. we can all win. All it takes is a change in the way you market.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinions of Reverse Mortgage Daily and its owners.

To contact the author of this article: Jarred Talmadge at

To contact the editor responsible for this article: Chris Clow at

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