First signing tomorrow is a reverse mortgage - any advice?

Hi, everyone. I am a new SA and have my first signing assignment tomorrow, which is for a reverse mortgage closing. I have been in the legal field for almost 20 years so I am comfortable with the basics of going through documents carefully and the rules of notarizations; however, I am a bit anxious about describing the documents to the signer. I realize that the documents are largely the same as in any mortgage transaction, but there are things that I feel unsure how to explain (i.e., the Indemnity and Undertaking Agreement). Any advice from veteran signers specific to reverse mortgage closings?

For the most part it’s gathering the evidence for the reverse mortgage the hard part, like the mortgage statement, proof of income and addtl data they ask for in the instructions. Explaining docs about indemnity is not hard because your just telling the signer that one party agrees to pay for loss or damages if it occurs. If they have questions always direct them to the Loan officer. I started 2 months ago and my first week was a reverse mortgage but I’ll suggest that you take your time and ensure that you read the instructions for the signing. You’ll be fine


Thank you! I have gone through the package several times to get familiar with the documents. There was nothing in the instructions about additional document/data to collect, so I am under the impression the lender already has what they need.

He was describing the initial application signing where you gather all supporting docs from the borrower to go back to the loan officer. For Future reference, if you get an assignment like what he describes (sometimes called a “Respa” signing or an “Initial Disclosure signing”) keep in mind they take just as long as the final signing, sometimes longer…as the people almost NEVER have all the documents ready that you need to send back. Also, companies claim you’ll be paid for this initial signing “when the loan closes” - don’t fall for it - two separate transactions, two separate payments, payment due upon completion.

Good luck.


You don’t need to “explain” anything to the borrower. Actually, we NSA’s are not to explain anything to the borrower. But, you can read, out loud, the title of the document and if you feel it’s necessary, read enough of a portion of the document that it explains itself. Or, you can give a summary of the document - but not explain it.

Prepare for it to take 2 hrs. Reverse mortgages are usually old people. Any questions that come up call the lender.

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Thanks everyone for the input and advice. The signing went pretty smoothly. It did take about 2 hours but I had planned on that just due to the sheer volume of papers. The signer had their adult daughter there with them as well to review the documents so there was a little extra time added, but we did not run into any issues. I have since done 2 refi’s which have been much quicker. Definitely a good lesson in balancing the time/cost of a signing compared to the fee. I realized that any reverse mortgages that I take need to be close to home and have a decent fee, otherwise it’s probably not worth doing.


I do want to point out here that not all RMs take that long - in the past I’ve had them run about normal time and I even had one that was only about 80 pages - yes it was the final signing (that one was a pleasure!) - you do need to anticipate the possibility of extra time but it may not always be that way.

Glad to hear it went well.

Glad you got the first Reverse under your belt. The sheer size can be intimidating if you’re new. I’m in this business for 21 years, first as a loan officer. The worst HECM I did was 260 pages, 2 signers; a 96 woman and her 70 year old son. The property was in a trust and the signers were required to sign with all the trust verbiage, which was ridiculous. It took 3 hours and it was an hour away. The SS only paid $160.I rarely take them now. Most of the SS’s don’t want to pay enough to make it worthwhile.

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