NJ Banking Commissioner Addresses Seniors Financial Concerns In Toms River
Acting NJ Banking Commisioner Ken Kobylowski continues his outreach to the state’s senior citizens through seminars addressing financial literacy for the older generation.
Tuesday’s event, the tenth in the series, was held in Toms River High School East was hosted by the Seaside Park Board of Education’s Community Education program.
Kobylowski uses the speaking tours to educate seniors about life insurance, annuities, and reverse mortgages; as well as answer any questions from the audience. One of the constant he has heard is concern about fraud.
“I’m not sure if they’re getting better, but they’re constantly evolving so we always tend to try and catch up to stay one step ahead of them.”
He notes while a lot of the fraud younger people are familiar with involves email or craigslist postings, seniors are still targeting in a more “old school” manner.
“Fraud aimed at the seniors still tends to be very much one on one, with telephone calls and one on one meetings. Things of that nature.”
One of the issues Kobylowski hasn’t had to address too much is Superstorm Sandy concerns. Since the storm Tuesday’s seminar is only the second one held, and the first one was in Bergen County. “Thankfully there wasn’t a lot of damage up there.’ notes the commissioner.
He says one of the anticipated issues will involve seniors who have fully paid off mortgages and need securing money to do repairs after the storm. In certain situations reverse mortgages could be worth considering.
“[Reverse Mortgages] in and of themselves they’re not bad products, used properly they could be a very good way for seniors to tap into the equity that’s tapped into their homes but they just need to be very very cautious about how they do that.”