You will hear about different Reverse Mortgage structures that can give a borrower over 62 years of age what they need for their specific situation .  I will share with you 3 or 4 ADDITIONAL sources of financing where retired borrowers can get financing when they need it in this episode of Real Estate Mortgage Shoppe.   Mary Lou Nowak of Mid-South Home Helpers will be sharing signs to look for when you visit your aging loved ones that will be the clues to know  when they may need help.  Mary Lou will share with you some  helpful actions you can take.

Let’s stay in touch! Subscribe to get updates on new blog posts and podcasts at   What topics would YOU like to hear?   What specific real estate or real estate financing questions do you have? 

To Your Success,

 Jo Garner, Mortgage Loan Officer   (901) 482-0354  jo@


Good morning, Memphis!  Welcome to our listeners across the 50 states! You’re on Real Estate Mortgage Shoppe. I’m your host, Jo Garner, Mortgage Loan Officer.  You can connect with me at   Our general topic is “MORTGAGES FOR SENIOR CITIZENS & NON-MEDICAL HOME ASSISTANCE SOLUTIONS FOR THOSE WE LOVE.” Let’s dedicate this show to the special people who helped  us through life, our mamas, daddys, grandparents or other special people who were there for us growing up.

If you have a question or comment and you’re on Twitter, make them to #JoGarner or call me directly off the show at (901) 482-0354.  You can call us while we are live at (901) 535-9732 or outside the Memphis area (800) 474-9732 Today is  November 5th, 2016.

I will cover some different Reverse Mortgage structures that can give a borrower over 62 years old what they need for their specific situation.  I will share with you 3 or 4 ADDITIONAL sources of financing where retired borrowers can get financing when they need it. Mary Lou Nowak of Mid-South Home Helpers will be sharing signs to look for when you visit your aging loved ones that will be the clues to know  when they may need help.  Mary Lou will share with us some  helpful actions you can take.

Mary Lou, you really know what to do when it comes to helping families take good care of the parents and grandparents who were the caregivers of yesteryear. I have heard so many great testimonies from people at Talk Shoppe and Business Network International.  Mary Lou, take a minute and introduce yourself to our listeners. Tell us a little bit about what you do.  <Mary Lou introduces herself and talks about what she does and WHY SHE DOES IT>

(Jo ) You have a really strong “WHY” behind what you do, Mary Lou.   You need a strong enough reason WHY you work at something to pull you through the challenging times and make the good times feel good all the way through your core.   That’s true in any business. I KNOW it’s true in the mortgage business.  With all the rapid fire changes that have been taking place in the lending business, it pulls on that muscle of patience and willingness to adapt every day.

  • The mortgage rates didn’t seem to think they had a strong enough “WHY” to go up yesterday afternoon, even though most lenders thought they would due to the great job numbers that came out.  But rates took their cues from the European bond market instead and  just stayed about the same. 30YR FIXED – 3.625% to 3. 75%; FHA/VA – 3.25-3.625% 15 YEAR FIXED – 2.875% to 3.25% no points in some cases. Prices on rates can vary on a number of factors.    The question is, where will the rates go after next week’s election?  Anybody want to take a guess?

 (Jo) Mary Lou, I know you work with handicapped family members and older family members offering them non-medical assistance so they can stay in their home.  Some of my older and wiser senior-aged mortgage clients bring back some great memories.  When I worked with them on their mortgage, they were making big changes in their lives  and it was a pleasure to be on the journey with them.  The answer for some of them was to help their family members buy a bigger house so they could all live together and enjoy each other’s support. Other clients found their answer in selling the big house with the big yard and all the maintenance and buying a smaller place with all the comforts they had in the old home place but with less upkeep to do. I was able to work closely with these clients to find just the right mortgage of combination or products to get them the money they needed with the peace of mind. Not all but most of these clients had enough equity when they sold the bigger home to put down a lot of money and have a very small mortgage payment on the smaller home. Ah, the sweet rewards of retirement.

(Sally Baker of The Source  901 258-4775 calls in and shares a story of one of her clients who, after an unexpected change in life, found that she did not want to have to deal with the maintenance and upkeep of the bigger home but sold it and moved to a zero lot line, secure gated community with just enough yard that she could still enjoy growing some of her own vegetables)  

(Mary Lou and Jo comment )

(Jo)  No matter what your changing life situation is, whether you are now ready to stop paying your landlord’s mortgage with your rent payments  and start building your own wealth by buying your own home, or maybe you have been through a divorce or maybe you have just been promoted on your job and need to move locally or away, MAKE YOUR PLAN, LET’S WORK YOUR PLAN. IF THE DEAL WORKS FOR YOU TODAY, LET’S DO IT TODAY.  Call me personally. I want to hear your plans and your goals so we can find the perfect mortgage with a comfortable payment.  But you have to call me personally at (901) 482-0354 (901) 482-0354 or connect with me at

Mary Lou, we are about to go into the holiday season where we spend a lot more time with our families near and far.  It’s a great time to be heroes to the parents and grandparents who were our heroes when we were growing up.  What are signs we can look for that may indicate that the person we love may need some extra support?  <Mary Lou launches her topic until 9:15 break>

[2nd segment after 9:15 break: Our Look Back Memphis Trivia Contest is brought to you  by notable Memphis historian, Jimmy Ogle. Jimmy Ogle offers free historic walking tours downtown in the spring and fall.  For information about Jimmy Ogle, go to .  The Look Back Memphis Trivia Contest is  sponsored by John and Jennifer Lawhon of Lawhon Landscape (901) 754-7474 the Lawhon’s can help you plan your landscaping if you have a BIG, BIG project or a smaller project . The Lawhons are giving away a $25 gift card to the first person with the correct trivia answer.  If you know the answer to our trivia question, call us at 901 535 WREC 901 535-9732.]


Garner # 93   11/04/16

[Trivia Answer: ]  Broad Avenue, or Binghamton.

TRIVIA QUESTION:  I am a new commercial area with a water tower as my “logo”. Who am I?

[TRIVIA HINTS] TRIVIA QUESTION:  Question:  I am a new commercial area with a water tower as my “logo”. Who am I?

Hint:  My community was incorporated in 1895.

Hint:   A major streetcar line ran through my business district out to Raleigh Springs in the early 1900s.

Hint:  I once had a boxcar manufacturing plant that employed over 1,000 workers and produced 16 boxcars daily.

Final Hint:   Huey P. Long (“The Kingfisher” and future Governor of Louisiana) once worked in this area.

Answer: Broad Avenue Arts District, or Binghamton. Binghamton began in 1895 as an independent and racially integrated rural Memphis town, with the Memphis Street Railway line running from Downtown to Raleigh Springs, through the center of the town. The town grew up around a boxcar factory, fabricating for a railroad. Binghamton was populated primarily by the blue-collar factory workers. Annexed by Memphis in 1919 when the city’s growth pushed to the east, Binghamton was eventually surrounded by more affluent neighborhoods. Binghamton proper has experienced shifting character as a result of development, various stages of racial segregation, and a transition from owner to renter occupied housing. The I-40 Expressway issue and Sam Cooper Blvd. has both stalled and shaped the growth of the area for the past 50 years, but now the area has developed a collective identity of a unique place to shop, play, work and live.

The Broad Avenue Arts District has emerged in the past ten years and now is vibrant Midtown area full of dozens of shops (20twelve, Bingham & Broad), studios (Five In One Social Club, Ronin Design, Found Studio, Metalworks, Victory Bicycle Studio), restaurants (Broadway Pizza, The Cove, Bounty on Broad, Muddy’s Kitchen), Wiseacre Brewery and various public art projects.  The Water Tower Pavilion is center stage for activities, gatherings and concerts on a weekly basis. 
Station on the site of the old Calhoun Street Station.


Jimmy Ogle gives free outdoor walking tours on the sidewalks and parks in Downtown Memphis during the Spring and Autumn of each year, with the next being the Judge D’Army Bailey County Courthouse Tour (indoors): one Thursday each month at 12:00 noon – the next being Thursday, December 15.  The first Overton Square Walking Tour is 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, October 23 at the Tower Courtyard Stage.  The November 6th, 1934 Street Tour is 6:06 p.m. on Sunday, November 6.  Go to for more information.



  1. What are the four factors to help determine if your loved one is still safe to live independently or if home health care is needed?

Noticing the need for help when visiting elders at the holidays and the four key factors that influence independence by Home Helpers.

Noticing the need for help while visiting with elders during the holidays The holidays are a seen for a time of joy. But often under-discussed is the reality that comes  along with visiting loved ones who are aging. Many times, visits home leave relatives with wonder if their aging loved ones are losing their ability to live independently. I am (insert name) I run the local home helpers office. As someone who works with families each and every day, I wanted to share some key signs that can help you  or others notice the need for additional support.

How to determine the need Today I plan to share with you the four key factors that help determine if your loved one is still  safe living independently or if senior home health care may be needed.

Four Key Factors Influencing Independence Those for Key factors include: physical appearance, memory, motor skills and mood.

Physical Appearance How is your loved ones’ personal hygiene?  Do you notice any significant weight gain or loss?  How is their home – consistent with how they have always maintained their living space?  Do you notice any bruises or cuts?

Pride in personal appearance can be one of the most telling early sign that a loved-one is changing and can be symptomatic of mood issues and/or other physical limitations that may be  occurring.

One of the most obvious signs of ill health, either physical or mental, is weight loss. The cause could be as serious as cancer, dementia, heart failure or depression. Or it could be related to a lack of energy to cook for a loved one or just themselves, the waning ability to read the fine print on food labels or difficulty cleaning utensils and cookware. Certain medications and aging in general can change the way food tastes. If weight loss is evident, talk to your loved one about  your concern and schedule a doctor’s visit to address the issue. Evaluating how they are maintaining the cleanliness of the home is also critical. Dust, dirt, and  other issues affect seniors with respiratory ailments and make recovery from illness harder. Look for bruises and cuts, this can be evidence of falls and symptomatic of other health issues.

Memory Is your loved one remembering things accurately?  Is your senior alert and actively involved in conversations? Memory loss is often one of the first signs of dementia. Initially, memory lapses may be mistaken for the normal forgetfulness that often increases as people grow older or when they become very stressed. However, in someone with dementia it will gradually become apparent that the memory problems are becoming more severe and persistent. They will also be accompanied by changes in thinking and feeling that make it more difficult to cope with  everyday life.  If the person’s forgetfulness could put them at risk in any way, you may need to take precautions that can help them live safely. These might include leaving a written reminder by the door so that they don’t forget their keys when they go out. Or it could mean fitting a device that cuts off the gas supply if they put a pan on the stove and then forget about it. It may mean  providing the senior with a personal alert system.   Memory issues can be one of the most difficult to talk to your senior about. Remember to be  patient, looking for ways to help them cope, safely with these changes.

20% of seniors are dealing with memory loss, impacting their ability to live safely independently. You may not realize that one in five seniors are currently dealing with memory loss, at a level that impacts their ability to live safely on their own. That is what makes this such an important  factor.

Motor Skills Do you notice your loved one struggling with tasks that are usually simple to execute?  How is their balance?  Are you aware of any falls?

Each year, 2.5 million older people are treated in emergency departments for fall injuries.  1 out  of 5 of these results in serious injury. Recovering from a fall can be challenging and cause long-term detonation of health. Sadly, many seniors become embarrassed to admit they’ve fallen and work to hide it from loved ones. Looking for balance issues, removing obstacles and decluttering the home as well as determining if a fall monitoring system may be easy ways to maintain safety and independence for your senior.

Mood Does your loved one seem happy?  Do you notice any drastic mood swings?  Do they have enough interaction with others to keep them happy and engaged?

Over 16% of seniors are dealing with depression. Sadly, up to 90 percent of people who suffer from depression later in life don’t receive adequate care, with 78 percent receiving no treatment at all. Elderly patients diagnosed with major depressive disorder (MDD) spend nearly twice as much on health care as those without the disease. Companion care can be a simple  way to help seniors feel connected – through meanin gful daily interaction.

  1. Talk about some of the government statistics for the number of senior aged people who need care vs the number of them actually receiving help.

9 million people will travel home for the holidays. This year the AAA estimates 1 in three people will be traveling home to visit relatives over the  holidays.According to the US Government, 70% of adults 65+ are currently in need of some type of inhome care. The US government estimates that 70% of all adults 65+ are currently in need of some type of in home senior care. Sadly only about 10% of those are receiving this care. Often, because the  signs that more assistance go unnoticed.

According to the US Government, 70% of adults 65+ are currently in need of some type of in-home care. The US government estimates that 70% of all adults 65+ are currently in need of some type of in-home senior care. Sadly only about 10% of those are receiving this care. Often, because the  signs that more assistance go unnoticed.

  1. What to you do if you notice a change for the worse when you visit your loved one?

Those four factors are a simple place to start. In the event that you notice a change, what should you do?

If you’ve noticed the need… Begin to keep a list of observations.  Begin to research.  Begin the conversation. Start capturing your observations. This way you can accurately talk to others about what you  are seeing and you can more accurately determine wh at changes have occurred.

Begin to research. Take some time to develop a list of options, so that you’re prepared in the event your loved one’s care needs escalate and help is needed. It’s better to be prepared than to scramble at the last minute. Preparedness makes it easier for the senior as well as the family to accept help. Determine if local home care agencies can help. Can they do as little as a couple hours a week, do they offer any kind of monitoring services, what can they do to help retain  independence at home.  Have the conversation. Instead of surprising your loved one with the suggestion that they receive extra care, warm them up to the idea early on. That way, they will be more open about  the option because it won’t seem so foreign.

If your loved one or someone you know could use help, I am happy to help.

  1. What can you do, Mary Lou, through Home Helpers when help is needed for a family member?

I can provide information and help families have the critical conversations that may be needed if they noticed a need. Each day we help thousands of families in the area – given this we understand the complexity of family dynamics. Personally, I enjoy helping families learn about their options and what might make the most sense for their unique needs. If you know of someone in this situation, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

  1. What sets Home Helpers apart from other agencies?

Mary Lou Nowak, Owner of MidSouth Home Helpers Specializing in elderly care and expert in expediting long term care insurance policies with the least amount of out of pocket expense.

  1. What are your tips for saving the most money when it is time to file a long term care claim?

Mary Lou covers this during the Real Estate Tip of the Week.




  1. How does the reverse mortgage program work for senior citizens?
  2. Before you talk with a reverse mortgage loan officer, government guidelines require that you first consult with a HUD approved Reverse Mortgage Counselor. You can find a reverse mortgage counselor by calling 1-800-569-4287 or going to HUD.GOV and searching under “reverse mortgage counseling.” It is advisable to also consult with your certified financial planner or other certified financial consultant.
  3. Depending on how long you plan on living in your home and the amount of equity you have in your home, the next step is to determine which type Reverse Mortgage is right for you. Here are a few of your options:
  • When you need the largest possible initial or future credit line, like a lump sum of cash or a credit line that could offer you the cash in the future if you need it.
  • You could set up the plan for getting the largest possible monthly payment for as long as you live in the house.
  • You could arrange to get as much cash as possible, at closing or after 12 months.
  • Reverse mortgages can be used to purchase a house with the smallest possible cash outlay.
  • Reverse mortgages can be used to pay for help in the home or for long term care policies.
  • The reverse mortgage program is not for everyone. Generally speaking, if you are over the age of 62 and have a home with a large amount of equity in it and no other options to take care of your cash and income needs, the Reverse Mortgage may be for you.
  • If you can reallocate your assets and investments to get the cash or income you need without having to get a Reverse Mortgage, that might be better.  Reverse mortgages can eat away a significant amount of the equity in your home because of the high cost to do them.
  • If you have family that you would like to inherit your home, you may not want to encumber the home with a Reverse Mortgage.  There are some alternative solutions that could allow you or your family member to get a Reverse Mortgage and still provide a way for the family members to pay it off when needed.
  1. Here are some other sites that offer information about reverse mortgages:
  1. What are some other sources of cash or financing options for retired borrowers?
  • Home Equity Line of Credit if it is affordable and small enough to pay off quickly if the interest rate begins to climb. Home Equity lines are great for fixing up the home and doing maintenance. If you have a house with a lot of equity that you would like to sell, but you need to buy your new home before you can sell the old one, you can use a temporary equity line of credit secured on the old home to access the cash you need for a down payment on the new home.  When the old house sells, you can pay off the Home EQUITY Line of Credit and then the house you just purchased with the credit line money is free and clear or just has a very small loan balance on it with a small payment, just like it would have been if you had sold your old residence first.
  • Other Financing in some situations can be used when older citizens buy a bigger house so they can live with their other family members. Or they down size to simplify and enjoy life a little more.   I’ve had some of my older customers call and say, “Jo, I’m 80 years old.  Would you lend an 80 year old person a 30 year loan?”  The answer is YES.  Lenders are not allowed to discriminate based on the age of the borrower. So regular mortgages of many shapes and sizes are available to the older clients.
  • Other sources of financing can come from surprising sources like a cash value on a whole life insurance policy. Banks like Evolve Bank and Trust have loan programs where you can borrow against certain stocks that are not included in the retirement plan so you can use the money to do the things you want to do, but still  leave the funds in the investment making you money.   There are still other places we can go treasure hunting together.  Call me personally and let’s talk about YOUR options   (901) 482-0354  or connect with me at


REAL ESTATE TIP OF THE WEEK (Mary Lou shares a real estate related money-saving or time-saving tip regarding getting handicapped modifications to the home and tips on how to save thousands when filing a long-term care claim.


  1. Talk Shoppe offers free networking & education to anyone interested in real estate or in business. Talk Shoppe meets every Wednesday 9A-10A CT at the University of Phoenix 65 Germantown Center 1st floor Cordova, TN.   This Wednesday November 9th, 2016 Talk Shoppe  presents: “Hit The Ground Running Through Effective Goal Setting” presented by Eric Eurich, Business Coach  For more information about Talk Shoppe, go to
  2. Thank you to a financial supporter of Talk Shoppe, Pat Goldstein, experienced Realtor with Crye-Leike in the Memphis area and Northern Mississippi.  (901) 606-2000
  3. Thank you also to Angie Brady of Republic Roofing for your financial support of Talk Shoppe. Republic Roofing can do roof repair and restoration for commercial and residential properties.   (901) 297-4141
  4. Today’s show was dedicated to the special people who helped all of us through life, our mamas, daddys, grandparents and other special people who were there for us growing up. What is something kind and thoughtful you can do for your special somebody? Don’t wait, do it today.  You’ll be glad you did.
  7. Real Estate Mortgage Shoppe reminds you that you need to MAKE YOUR PLAN, LET’S WORK YOUR PLAN. IF THE DEAL WORKS FOR YOU TODAY, DO IT TODAY.


  1. Oliver Wendell Holmes – Old age is always fifteen years older than I am
  1. Theodore Roosevelt – Age is like everything else. To make a success of it, you’ve got to start young
  1. Chili Davis – Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional



  1. Troy and Lynn McDonald of Erin McDonald Insurance Agency (901) 849-7101 Bartlett, Tennessee– Lynn’s customer service is par excellence.  She even delivers homemade cookies to the closing table. 
  2. Jackie Woodside, Marlboro, Massachusetts–author of the book Calming The Chaos
  3. Kevin Yee, Save Energy Solutions , Memphis, Tennessee 901 492-1649 Kevin gets the bad air out of your house, making your home healthier. 


Transitional Music: “Somebody’s Hero”  Jamie O’Neal; “Dance With My Father Again”   Luther Vandross; “They Don’t Make ‘Em Like That Anymore”   by Jason Blaine; “Memphis” by Johnny Rivers for Look Back Memphis Trivia Contest




Organizing Your World

To free your space, your time and your mind!


Sally is an expert organizer, estate sale coordinator, event planner and coordinator. Sally can bring order and peace to your life.

The Source Unlimited 1995 – Present (19 years) (901) 258-4775



(415) 412-8610



 ABOUT M­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­ARY LOU NOWAK, HOME HELPERS


Mary Lou Nowak is a professional who began client care at a 500 bed community hospital in 2001 and since, while working with seniors and their families as owner of Home Helpers became an expert in expediting long term care insurance policies saving families thousands.

Home Helpers – (901) 414-9696



A New Look At Your Home Financing    (901) 482 0354  jo@  twitter @jogarner 

Jo describes her job description: As a mortgage loan officer, my job is to give my client the benefits they want from their financing terms– listening to my client and determine what’s of the most value to THEM–  What is their comfort level on a house payment, how much are they comfortable paying down, what type of financing do they need to get the house they want to buy or refinance. Different clients have different priorities in life—some are buying their first home with very little down payment funds.  Some are recovering from medical challenges, divorces or preparing to send children to college and some are embarking on a long term goal of buying properties to build rental income. Whatever their personal priorities are, my job is to put together a mortgage with comfortable terms that will help them achieve their goals.”

Jo Garner is a mortgage officer with extensive knowledge in tailoring mortgages to her customers who are refinancing or purchasing homes all over the country.  She offers conventional, FHA, VA or other loan programs for refinancing and purchases.

Jo can help you look at rent vs buy, when it makes sense to refinance, how to get the best deal on your home  purchase financing.

Jo Garner  has been in the real estate/financing business for over 20 years.  She got her start in Portland, Maine where she first began her real estate career. She received her real estate education from the University of Southern Maine  and was personally mentored in San Diego, California  by Robert G. Allen, author of Nothing Down, Creating Wealth and The Challenge.

On moving back to West Tennessee in 1987, she went into business buying and selling discounted owner-financed notes secured on real estate.  In 1990 Jo went to work for a residential mortgage company and has been a mortgage loan officer for over 20 years.  Her goal is to offer excellent, affordable service to her customers, tailoring the loan programs to the specific needs of her clients.

In addition to her work in the mortgage field, Jo Garner  is the primary sponsor and founder of Talk Shoppe in Memphis.  She was also the editor of Power Shoppe, a free weekly e-zine designed for real estate professionals and others indirectly connected to the real estate industry and currently publishes on her blog