Senior Home Equity Reaches $4.08 Trillion, Reverse Mortgage Market Index Hits Record High

NRMLA Logo 12-18 (cropped)

September 22, 2015

Washington – The Reverse Mortgage Market Index (RMMI), a quarterly measure that analyzes trends in the home values, home equity, and mortgage debt of homeowners 62 and older, reached an all-time high of 195.29 in the second quarter of 2015, surpassing the prior record of 192.03 set in Q4 2006.

On a quarter-over-quarter basis, the index rose 3.0% in the second quarter, as senior home equity increased by $117.1 billion.

“The strong gains in housing wealth among America’s seniors are an encouraging economic indicator for the millions of boomers who weathered the recession on the cusp of their retirement years,” said NRMLA President Peter Bell. “The home equity they’ve worked so hard to build up can serve as a valuable financial management tool for years to come.”

The increase in senior home equity relative to the first quarter was driven by an estimated $122.8 billion increase in the aggregate value of senior housing, which was offset by a $5.7 billion increase in senior-held mortgage debt.

The second quarter of 2015 was the thirteenth consecutive quarter in which the index has risen, and the current estimate of $4.08 trillion for the aggregate value of senior home equity represents a 38% recovery from the post-Recession trough in Q2 2011, when senior equity levels had fallen to an estimated $3.0 trillion.

The RMMI is updated quarterly and tracks back to the start of 2000. Release dates for 2015 – 2016 are:

Q3 2015: 12/22/2015
Q4 2015: 3/22/2016
Q1 2016: 6/21/2016
Q2 2016: 9/20/2016
Q3 2016: 12/20/2016

RMMI Q2 2015 slide presentation

About Reverse Mortgages
Reverse mortgages are available to homeowners 62 years old and older with significant home equity. They are designed to enable retirees to borrow against the equity in their homes without having to make monthly payments as is required with a traditional “forward” mortgage or home equity loan. Under a reverse mortgage, funds are advanced to the borrower and interest accrues, but the outstanding balance is not due until the last borrower leaves the home, sells, or passes away. Borrowers may draw down funds as a lump sum at loan origination, establish a line of credit or request fixed monthly payments for a set term or tenure in the home.

To date, more than 930,000 senior households have utilized an FHA-insured reverse mortgage. More than 616,000 senior households are currently using a reverse mortgage to help meet their financial needs. For more information, please visit

About the National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association
The National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association (NRMLA) is the national voice for the industry and represents the lenders, loan servicers, credit unions, and housing counseling agencies responsible for more than 90 percent of reverse mortgage transactions in the United States. All NRMLA member companies commit themselves to a Code of Ethics & Professional Responsibility.

Jenny Werwa
Phone: 202-939-1783