Seniors Money International today confirmed its entry into the Canadian reverse mortgage marketplace and its goal to be the preferred provider in conservative and flexible retirement funding.

Founded in New Zealand, the global firm is a specialist in retirement funding with a strong track record of serving seniors in Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Spain, and South Africa. The company is a market leader in Australia, Ireland and New Zealand, while gaining in share in all other global markets.

“The entry of Seniors Money into Canada underscores the growing significance of Canadians 60 years and older, and their desire to maintain financial independence,” says Nick DiRenzo, president & CEO of Seniors Money Canada. “

Seniors Money International’s research has shown that its customers are prudent, responsible and have an average loan of approximately $75,000. The money is typically used for home renovations and family gifts.

DiRenzo says reverse mortgages enjoy growing acceptance as a mainstream and thoughtful financial product in many global markets. He anticipates that reverse mortgages will become increasingly popular in Canada as the number of 60 year olds is anticipated to double over the next 25 years.

“Seniors around the world have come to realize that a reverse mortgage is a normal and responsible way to access their own money,” says Direnzo. “No monthly mortgage payments are required until the last borrower permanently moves out of the home. And, the money obtained from a reverse mortgage is also the customer’s to use in any way they choose.”

The amount seniors can borrow depends on their age and the appraised value of the home. Seniors Money will lend on a scale of up to 15% of the home’s value for someone at age 60 and up to 45% at age 90. The variable rate is 7.5%, and is guaranteed to never go above Bank Prime plus 2%. Interest is compounded monthly. The loan also comes without any penalty clauses and a guarantee that the homeowner or their estate can never owe more than the value of the house regardless of house price deflation or how long the residents live.

Headquartered in Mississauga, Seniors Money Canada will initially offer its reverse mortgage product in Southwestern Ontario. The product will be made available through dedicated Seniors Money consultants in leading Ontario centres including: Toronto, Windsor, London, Kitchener, Hamilton, and St. Catharines. Seniors Money will expand its national presence in 2008.

Seniors Money will introduce itself to Canadians with an integrated marketing campaign in Ontario starting September 3. Under the theme “Give Yourself a Hand,” the consumer advertising will showcase Canadians using the equity they’ve accumulated in their home to complete meaningful life projects or assist family members achieve an education.