Virginia’s Livable Home Tax Credit Program

Did your parents want to leave their home when they retired? Do you wish to leave yours?

If you do, you are overwhelmingly in the minority: fully 95% of people polled state they wish to age in place. But what if the layout of the home just doesn’t work?

Tax Incentives for Improving Accessibility in the Home

For individuals with accessibility issues in the home, Virginia’s Livable Home Tax Credit (“LHTC”) program provides financial incentives for improving accessibility in residential housing. The credit applies to the purchase of a home or to the retrofit of a current home.

Tax credits up to $5,000 are available for the purchase or construction of an accessible residence, or up to 50 percent of the cost of retrofitting an existing home, not to exceed $5,000. If the tax credit exceeds the eligible individual’s tax liability, the credit may be carried forward for up to seven years.

It is important to note: applications must be filed with the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) by February 28, 2013 for a purchase or retrofit completed in 2012.

For more information visit the DHCD website at


Laurie Denker MacNaughton [NMLS# 506562] · Reverse Mortgage Consultant · Middleburg Mortgage, a Division of Middleburg Bank · 20937 Ashburn Road, Suite 115 ·Ashburn, Virginia 20147 · 703-477-1183 Direct · ·

Visit my Informational Blog at

Potato Skins and Emerging Trends: Aging In America

Charles, Jr., always preferred the name Chuck. But in his years as a scrappy street-fighter in Providence, Rhode Island, he was simply called “Bull Dog.” The aptness of that description I will leave unaddressed.

Chuck was the only son of Charles, Sr. and Elizabeth, New England socialites who came into fast money when Charles, Sr., a chemist, patented a durable fabric blend for Pullman sleeper cars. Wanting nothing to do with his parents’ new-found wealth, Chuck dropped out of high school to run bets for an off-track gambling ring. Not yet out of his teens, he was a heavy drinker, ruthless fighter, and on several occasions narrowly escaped police sweeps.

Around 2:30 Sunday afternoon, December 7th, Chuck and a friend were walking to join a game of nine-pin. One street over they heard yelling, and thinking a fight had broken out, ran to join the fray. What they found changed their lives, their nation, and indeed the whole world. What they found, of course, was news of Pearl Harbor.

Chuck’s particular journey led him into the U.S. Eighth Army Air Corps, proudly referred to as “The Mighty Eighth.” On its twenty-second mission his B-24 was shot down, and Chuck and the one other surviving crew member spent the remainder of the war in Stammlager Luftwaffe #17b, otherwise known as the infamous Stalag 17.

Hunger, cold, vermin, illness, and despair defined life for the 4000 men in the camp. Chuck, wanting documentation of the men’s lives, worked alongside two other corpsmen to create photosensitive paper, done by coating scraps of paper with a potato skin emulsion. The paper was then placed into a light-tight box, with only the smallest of holes carefully punched in one end. These photos exist to this day in a book called Kriege Memories, self-published after the war by Chuck and one of his fellow corpsmen.

Chuck, now gone, told me his story several years ago. As the daughter of an aerospace engineer, I gathered details of his story the way others collect baseball memorabilia, Indian head nickels, or teacups. I have Chuck’s photos, several Western Union telegrams, Red Cross communications, and his letters home that were never posted.

For me in some ways this account has grown richer over the years. Some of the power comes from the photos themselves, arrestingly clear despite their fundamentally unstable original medium, and their having been stored for years before being preserved.

But part of the elemental power is simply this: this was a generation that did what it took, with what was at hand, to get the job done. And though we are losing this generation, these qualities still persist.

This week past I met with…a “family.” My client, the homeowner, is well past 80, widowed, and in need of companionship, light housekeeping, transportation, and help with medications. Living with her is a male companion, a long-time friend, who is several years her junior. Also in the home is a pre-teen boy and his mother, who lost her own home when she was laid off from her HR job. She is now back to work, and well on her way toward regaining financial stability.

Messy, right?

Oddly, no.

In fact, I have been in households composed of blood relatives that were far less functional, far less kind, and in far greater distress.

Life is really just stitched-together stories, so I asked my client to tell me the story of her household. The simplicity, elegance, and bald-faced honesty were arresting: she said, in effect, “I have a house, they needed a home. I need help, they have youth.”

Even now this is a generation that does what it takes, with what is at hand, to get the job done.

And, as it turns out, my client and her new, blended family are far from being an isolated phenomenon. In fact, it is one of the fastest-growing household trends…

And more on that in my next post.

Let me know what you’re seeing – I always love hearing from you.


Laurie Denker MacNaughton [NMLS# 506562] · Reverse Mortgage Consultant · Middleburg Mortgage, a Division of Middleburg Bank · 20937 Ashburn Road, Suite 115 ·Ashburn, Virginia 20147 · 703-477-1183 Direct · ·

Visit my Informational Blog at

FHA Reverse Mortgage: Rumors Of Its Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated

Well, well, well – one thing certainly can be said of those of us living in the Washington, DC area: we read our news.

Yesterday, MetLife unexpectedly announced it was exiting the Reverse Mortgage field, catching even its own employees off guard. Met had already sold its bank and closed its home mortgage division months earlier.

Within 10 minutes of the announcement my phone began to ring. And ring…and RING. Colleagues, clients, and co-workers wanted to know if Met’s exit meant my employer, Middleburg Bank, was going to be negatively impacted.

So what does this mean for you, for your clients, and for those of us privileged enough to live here in the greater Baltimore-Washington corridor?

NOTHING. It means nothing.

And WHY? Because the FHA HECM only works when there is equity in the home sufficient to extinguish “forward” loans on the property. Put a home in Tucson or Tulsa, Denver, or Dubuque and chances are the HECM just isn’t going to work.

Put that same home in Bethesda or Brandywine, Arlington or Alexandria, Middleburg or Marshall, and it’s a different story altogether.

The Blessed Are…Well, Blessed: Using Home Equity to Supplement Retirement Income

There are no two ways about it: we here in the shadow of D.C.are blessed in many ways. History books are filled with reasons why those with options have more options still, and those with few options have still fewer.

As one nationwide lender after another exits the HECM market, the product becomes a regional offering. And it makes sense: why would a national lender maintain a workforce of hundreds – or thousands – if the product only works in a handful of regions across the country. We have always had good options – and now we still have good options.

I am grateful to live in a region in which our senior clients, adult children caring for parents, and our family and friends still have available to them the FHA HECM as a planning tool to see them safely through retirement.

Give me a call with any questions or concerns you may have. I am always delighted to hear from you. And, as always, I am privileged to work with you to find solutions to the financial needs of the seniors in your life.


Laurie MacNaughton [NMLS# 506562]
Reverse Mortgage Consultant
Middleburg Mortgage
20937 Ashburn Road, Ste 115
Ashburn, Virginia 20147
703-477-1183 Direct
703-995-4870 Fax