To help our members get to know one another, NRMLA will publish periodic Member Spotlights that feature professionals from across the reverse mortgage ecosystem.
Meet Deb Vallow, a loan officer at Cherry Creek Mortgage, Scottsdale, AZ. Deb has been in the mortgage industry since 2009.
After moving cross country from Virginia to Arizona with their cat Buddy, Deb and her husband Troy love spending time with family and friends and enjoy exploring all the wonderful things that their new state has to offer.
How did you get into the reverse mortgage world?
My first client lost her part-time job. She was in a 15-year mortgage and the payment became too much for her reduced income. Her financial advisor reached out because he was concerned about the impact that a reduction in income was having on her retirement. Without the part-time job, she didn’t qualify for a 30-year mortgage, which would have reduced her payment. Being able to put her in a reverse allowed her to stay in her home and make some needed repairs. Helping her showed me not only how a reverse mortgage can change a person’s financial future, but it’s also the personal connection that is created and that is very special.
If you could offer one piece of advice to someone who wants to get into the reverse mortgage world, what would it be and why?
My advice would be to make sure that you know exactly how the product works and be very clear on costs and the benefits. You will meet clients who will really benefit from a reverse mortgage and others who it might not be the best option. Work in tandem with their financial advisors and be the best resource for how a reverse can be part of their financial plan for the future. Always be educating!
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I am an avid runner and I like to use that passion to fundraise for various non-profits. My husband and I are recent transplants to Arizona from Virginia, so we have been enjoying what both the desert and the high country have to offer. I also like to tinker around in the yard and am learning about desert gardening.
What do you love most about working in the reverse mortgage industry?
It sounds cliché, but my favorite part of the reverse mortgage process is really getting to know the clients. When they share their stories of where they’re from, their families and life experiences, and you are doing something that is helping, that is what it’s all about.