An older couple purchased a new motor home for $187,000 twelve years ago. They put a relatively small down payment on it and financed the balance.
After deciding to give up full-timing, they purchased a house. They then spent all the cash they had to remodel the bathrooms.
Then the husband passed away suddenly.
The widow now owned a coach that still had a $66,000 loan on it as well as a house she also had to pay for.
She called me for advice, and I discovered that the market value for her unit in top condition was at most going to be around $40,000, but because it needed tires, was 12 years old and had a rubber roof, she’d be lucky to get $33,000 for it.
She had no savings or equity and therefore no cash with which to pay off the loan.
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She also could not afford to make payments on a bridge loan.
With the help of an attorney she resolved her problem by giving the coach back to the bank and having them put a lien on her house. This meant that whenever she sells the house, she’ll have to do so at a high enough price to pay off the entire bank loan.
The big mistake this couple made was to not take the time to research their financial situation before buying the house.
Had they done this, they never would have purchased it, would have retained their cash and would have avoided their financial problems simply by continuing to live as they had for years.
The widow was lucky to have found an attorney who was able to help her dump her coach.
But for his connections and efforts, she might not have been able to do this.
While his help did relieve her of her immediate financial problems, the truth is that unless the value of her house increases significantly, when she goes to sell it she may be once again faced with the same problem!