Enjoy your golden years with equity release - Our top four facts
If you’re aged 55 or over, you could release money from your home which you can spend on almost anything you wish, once you’ve paid off any existing mortgage. Perhaps the holiday of a lifetime when restrictions are lifted, or the home improvements you’re dreaming of?
With our top four equity release facts you will have a better idea of what’s really on offer and whether it could be right for you.
- Average rates are lower than ever
As more homeowners have taken equity release, the number of plans has grown dramatically in the past two years offering more flexibility and choice for customers. Interest rates have also dropped, with the average rate now sitting at 4.11 per cent with some plans even available below 3 per cent.
- Drawdown options let you take regular income
The most popular type of equity release is called a lifetime mortgage, and with this you usually have the option to take the money all at once or to take it on a drawdown basis – as and when you need it.
This means you take an initial lump sum at the start then take further withdrawals at a later stage, meaning you only accrue interest on the money you take out.
- You can ring-fence your inheritance
One of the concerns people may have when considering equity release is how it will affect the inheritance they are able to leave behind when they pass on.
It’s true that equity release can eat in to an inheritance, but you can also ring-fence a portion of the equity in your property so that it’s protected. This is known as an ‘inheritance protection guarantee’.
A specialist equity release broker, such as Age Partnership, will tell you everything you need to know about the effect on the amount of inheritance you can leave and if your entitlement to means-tested benefits could be affected now or in the future.
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- Most equity release plans now carry a ‘no negative equity’ guarantee
This means that when your property is sold and fees have been paid, even if the amount left is not enough to repay the outstanding amount to your provider, neither you nor your estate will be liable to pay any more.
With most lifetime mortgage plans there are no monthly repayments required, the interest rolls up and compounds until the property is sold. Any money released, plus accrued interest, is repaid upon death or moving into long-term care. When this happens, the provider will reclaim the loan as well as all the interest that has rolled up.
Radio Times work with the UK’s largest equity release broker1, Age Partnership, who can provide you with a free, no-obligation quotation to discuss the different options available to you.
Equity release may involve a home reversion or lifetime mortgage, which is secured against your property. To understand the features and risks, ask for your personalised illustration.
Only if you choose to proceed and your case completes would a typical fee of £1,795 be payable.
Information correct at time of publishing.
- Based on volume of plans, Touchstone data, 2018 – Q3 2020