The only thing that the borrower is required to do is to pay taxes (the government), home owners insurance (in case they accidentally leave the stove on and burns the house down, their old, it happens), and to keep up on the maintenance of the house (nobody wants a neighbor that wont cut their grass).
The reverse mortgage can eliminate a monthly mortgage payment, which can take up most of a seniors monthly fixed income. That doesn't always give the borrow a lot of wiggle room in case an emergency came up.
The reverse mortgage can give an old senior couple, who has been poor their entire life, access to tens, even hundreds of thousands of dollars, tax free with no restrictions on what they use the money on.
This loan can change so many lives, its sad to see its reputation get beat up so badly by people who are not educated on the reverse mortgage.