Will equity release be the pension of the future?

Three times more young people expect to use equity release on their homes to fund their retirement than those already over 55, according to a new survey.

Canada Life say their research shows younger people will be far more reliant in property as the means to fund their retirement than the older generation.

Reality

Spokeswoman Alice Watson says the split reflects the reality that those under 50 are less likely to get a generous pension income.

She added: “The research also illustrates the evolving profile of retirement income and lends further weight to the argument that equity release is moving into mainstream financial planning.”

Equity release

Sales of equity release products have been booming in recent years with people unlocking the money they have tied up in their property to fund a better lifestyle in their retirement.

Figures from the Equity Release Council show that £1.18 billion was released by such products in the first three months of this year – £150 million more than the same period in 2018.

Debts

However, current pensioners were using the cash for a variety of things rather than topping up living standards said the report.

The biggest section was home and garden improvements, followed by those wanting to pay off outstanding credit card balances, loans or outstanding mortgage balance.

Just over 30% used some of the funds to pay for holidays.

More advisors needed

Alice Watson commented: “With more consumers open to using their property wealth in the future, it is crucial that there is also a growth in advisors.

“That is why we have organised a series of workshops designed to help advisers either become equity release qualified, or to make the most of their existing qualifications.”