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Retirees ignore housing equity options

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More than two thirds of people aged 65 and over have housing equity that could help bolster their retirement income, according to LV=.

A survey conducted by the financial services group points towards the challenges increased life expectancy is placing on small pension pots. While 32% of retirees have an income that is less than the minimum wage, 68% have housing equity.

Of those surveyed who are over 65:

  • 83% own their home
  • the average property equity equates to around £235,750
  • 7% have unlocked capital in their property to help fund their retirement
  • 17% think that they would leave debt to their loved ones by using equity release.

The survey reveals widespread misunderstandings about the equity release process, with 24% of respondents thinking that their equity release borrowing could end up being more than the total value of their property.

John Perks, managing director of retirement solutions at LV=, said:

“It’s deeply concerning that so many older people are struggling in retirement, often going without life’s essentials but it doesn’t have to be this way.

“There are many options available and using untapped housing wealth to supplement other incomes is a route worth considering, as it allows you to free up capital and afford the retirement you want.”

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