When applying for a home improvement loan, whose income is counted?

1 answer | Last updated: Sep 14, 2017
Mzmoniep asked...

My son is 39 and I am 58 years old. My widowed mother is 89 years old and has dementia. My son and I take turns living with her we both work full-time for the State of Kansas. She goes to adult day care Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. I want to apply for a home improvement loan for the home she lives in and owns. My brother pays her bills with her social security and my late father's retirement pension. My son and I take care of her transportation, health care needs and feeding her. When I apply for home repair benefits does any one else s income besides hers count?

Expert Answers

Steve Weisman hosts the nationally syndicated radio show A Touch of Grey, heard on more than 50 stations, including WABC in New York City and KRLA in Los Angeles. He is a practicing lawyer specializing in estate planning and is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court. He's a public speaker and commentator who has appeared on many radio and television shows throughout the country, and he's the legal editor of Talkers magazine, the preeminent trade publication of talk radio. His latest book is The Truth About Avoiding Scams.

Because your mother is the sole owner, a home improvement loan secured by the home would have to be obtained by her or someone authorized to act on her behalf such as yourself if you are acting under either the authority of a Durable Power of Attorney or a guardianship. Even with the authority to obtain such a secured loan on her behalf, however, her income may not be sufficient for a bank or other lending institution to grant the loan. However, if you choose, however, you or someone else could co-sign the loan, in which case the loan would, most likely be granted. In that event you would want to make sure that your rights to reimbursement from the property is secure, such as through a second mortgage with sufficient equity in the property to insure that you would not lose money. You also would have to make sure that there was sufficient income of your mother to repay the loan as a part of her monthly budget. If not, you would have to determine whether you are willing to assume this cost with the condition that you be repaid at a later time.