It wasn’t long ago that equity release was a small, specialised area of the mortgage arena. To be honest, the equity release industry initially took a while to find its feet. It was some time before products were simple to understand, consumer-friendly, offered seriously attractive tax advantage and were – let’s face it – trusted.
Times have changed & so has Equity Release
Over 70,000 people a year now enjoy the benefits of releasing equity built up in their homes and, as we see both state and private pension provision becoming ever tighter, this figure is only set to rise. lifetime mortgages it seems are destined to become less ‘alternative’ and far more mainstream.
The Equity Release Council (ERC) recently confirmed this growth when it revealed that almost £4 billion was released by UK home owners from their properties during 2018. This report added weight to an industry-wide belief that equity release is increasingly seen as a valuable, mainstream option for boosting the finances of homeowners aged 55 and over.
Flexibility is key
Recent years have seen the equity release process become increasingly more flexible.
In place of the take-it-or-leave-it lump sum approach, we now see clients benefitting from a much wider and far more diverse range of equity release options. Homeowners are now presented with the choice of releasing equity as a tax-free lump sum, or withdrawing smaller amounts over time. This means that where the full amount isn’t immediately required the unused funds are held in a reserve, interest free, until needed by the client.
All of this continues to boost the popularity of equity release, but there’s even more.
Lifetime Mortgages (The most popular form of Equity Release)
A lifetime mortgage involves releasing a proportion of the equity that has built up in your home. Recent statistics confirm that around 31% of us, that’s one third, have repaid our original mortgage, leaving us sitting on an asset worth a considerable sum. And, whilst it was one almost impossible to access some of that money, increasingly flexible Lifetime mortgages have changed the landscape for asset rich homeowners.
Top 3 features of Lifetime mortgages:
- You retain 100% ownership of your home and live their until you die or move into long-term care;
- There are no monthly payments
- The funds you release are completely tax free – spend them entirely as you wish.
How will you spend yours?
The numerous advantages of equity release include providing a supplementary income, helping younger family members with university fees or to get a foot on the housing ladder. Others simply want to enjoy their retirement, whether that means a nice new car, travelling the world, or refurbishing their home (new kitchen, conservatory or landscaped garden) to increase it’s value and create the home of their dreams.
If you think that Equity release could be for you, the first step is to speak with a trusted, qualified adviser. During a FREE no-obligation meeting they will take the time to understand your needs before assessing the current market to suggest the most suitable equity release plan for you. The process can help avoid reducing the value of your estate or compromising any entitlement to means-tested state benefits.
Thank you for reading!