Ann Marie Stemen September 2017

A Learning Experience in LIFE AND HOMEOWNERSHIP 5950 Venture Drive, Suite B, Dublin, OH 43017 • • 614-339-0432 • September 2017 ith kids and grandkids headed back to school


this fall, I got to thinking about how education continues to play a major role in my life. There was a time when I worked in the mortgage industry and my clients would only ask me a handful of questions. They wanted to know how long it would take to close on the house, along with the associated costs and payments. And that was about it. A mortgage was nothing more than a commodity to be bought and sold. My relationships with clients were generally short. They came and went, and I wasn’t in a place where I could teach anyone anything meaningful. Plus, because those professional relationships were brief, I didn’t learn much from my clients. This all changed when I shifted my focus to the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage for Purchase Program. HECM for Purchase is all about relationships forged through teaching and learning. It put into perspective just how much I missed building real connections with people when I was working in the mortgage industry. A big part of the relationship I have with clients today comes down to education. About 90 percent of my work is educating people about all the aspects of HECM for Purchase, and I love it! The other 10 percent is paperwork, and for that, I’m surrounded by a great team of supportive and amazing people who ensure that nothing slips by. When it comes to the HECM for Purchase program, most of the education I do is centered on how the program works, how retirees can take advantage of it, and how it fits within their overall retirement plan. Discussing the details of the program and informing people of their options is a wonderful experience. It’s only made better when I see a lightbulb go on and they realize the potential of the program and how they will benefit.

Since immersing myself in HECM for Purchase, I’ve essentially developed a curriculum for the program. From the HECM for Purchase Homebuyer’s Guide to my homebuyer’s seminars, there’s something for just about everyone. There’s even, a website for anyone interested in the weekly seminars who may not be able to attend in person. Of course, I always love and welcome one-on-one meetings. As an educator, I realize not everyone learns best in a group setting. Some people are more comfortable talking face- to-face because they feel more at ease asking questions about the program. They may even ask questions that aren’t program-related, but rather about life in general. Above all, it’s those “life in general” moments that I truly cherish. I love being in a place where I can educate, have real conversations, and build genuinely meaningful relationships that may last years or even longer. And since I work with folks who are 62 and older, I, in turn, get to learn so much from them. Every client has a lifetime of stories to tell. They’ve been through so much and have seen so many amazing things. At the end of the day, honestly, I leave the conversation having learned more about life than I could ever teach in a seminar. Ann Marie


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