4 Questions to overcome common objections
A defensive response is a sure way to lose. Lose a political debate, a public presentation, or even worse your credibility.
Much of what has been presented in the media at large regarding reverse mortgages can easily put any HECM professional in a defensive position. Often hysteria, fear, one-sided stories, and willful omission are used in the effort to get clicks and emotionally trigger the reader. But don’t let yourself fall into the trap of getting defensive. And truth be told, many of the falsehoods the media push are actually straw man arguments.
Reading Plato’s Republic revealed some fantastic techniques for how we can respond when challenged, accused, or misunderstood. In The Republic, Plato uses Socrates as his fictitious narrator. When pressed on a point of disagreement Socrates doesn’t become defensive but rather responds with a question- a technique that bears his name to this day, the Socratic method.
We’ll show you how a Socratic response to objections fueled by media falsehoods is a much more effective response. Some of the misconceptions reverse mortgage professionals are likely to encounter include the alleged unique risks of delinquent property taxes and unpaid homeowner’s insurance premiums, claims that the loan is unjustly expensive, or the loss of ownership. Even worse, many who claim to be mortgage or financial ‘experts’ are falsely attributing some risks only being found in HECM loans, when in fact, they are found in traditional mortgages.
So the next time a financial advisor, banker, or potential borrower confronts you with a negative media story instead of becoming defensive instead try to ask one of these questions. Responding with a question instead of reacting shows strength and shifts the power back to the person asking the question.
- Are you familiar with how delinquent property taxes are handled in a traditional mortgage? [Objection: You’re particularly at risk if you have a reverse mortgage and don’t pay your property taxes.]
- Are proceeds from a home equity loan (HELOC) or cash-out refinance taxable? [Objection: Borrowers have to pay taxes on the proceeds from a reverse mortgage.]
- Does a homeowner who takes out a traditional mortgage still own the property? [Objection: You lose the title to your home if you get a reverse mortgage.]
- What happens if a borrower transfers the title of their home to another party without the permission of the mortgage lender? [Objection: You can lose the home with a reverse mortgage if you change ownership.]
- (Bonus) Would say a loan with no required payments is more or less risky than a traditional FHA loan? Are insurance premiums typically more expensive with higher-risk loans? [Objection: Reverse mortgages are unnecessarily expensive.]
These are just a few ways how the use of questions can help a critic or fearful homeowner separate unfounded fear from fact in reverse mortgages. Remember, if you say it they will doubt you- if they say it, it’s true. Ask the question and let them say it instead and overcome their own objection.