18 Jan

More homeowners opt for equity release

More homeowners opt for equity release

Equity release levels rose above £2 billion in 2016, according to the latest data.

Figures from the Equity Release Council over the past 12 months show total lending amounted to £2.15 billion - an increase of 34 per cent compared to the previous year.

Equity release was the highest during the last quarter of the year, with 8,303 release plans taken out from October to December 2016.

Customers also showed more demand for lump sum lifetime mortgages, with a 26 per cent increase compared to 2015. However, drawdown products remain the most popular option and account for 65 per cent of the market.

Nigel Waterson, chairman of the Equity Release Council, said: “2016 has proven to be a historic year for the equity release sector. Passing the £2 billion mark for the first time indicates that housing wealth is becoming an increasingly important focus of retirement planning.

“The market continues to become ever more competitive with growing choice and falling rates for customers a welcome consequence of moves by new and existing providers. It is vital that we now build on this momentum to ensure more people can access the necessary information and advice to make informed choices about how best to use their various assets in later life.”

He added: “With increased recognition of the role housing wealth can play, we look forward to working closely alongside government, regulators and industry to help support the UK’s ageing population.”ADNFCR-1222-ID-801831169-ADNFCR

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