Take a look
New research by SunLife shows that the average person aged 55 years or older has lived in their current home for 24 years, during which time it has likely to have more than tripled in value.
Most of this group have paid off their mortgage, and on average did so when they were just 54, but the average outstanding mortgage among them is just over £8,300, meaning they have around £280,000 in equity.
When asked how much extra cash they’d need before they felt truly comfortable, the answer was £184,000 – almost a hundred thousand pounds less than they already have in equity.
“Equity release is becoming an ever more popular way for people to fund the retirement they want,” said SunLife’s CEO Dean Lamble.
“With the average equity that someone over 55 has standing at £280,000, it’s clear that equity release is worth considering as a way to get hold of money for home improvements, to pay off an existing mortgage so there’s more money each month, or to give children some of their inheritance early, perhaps to help them get on the property ladder.”
Surprisingly, the over 55 audience have an excellent understanding of their home’s true value, knowing how much it had gone up since they’d bought it and how much it was worth.
“You might not expect someone who’s lived in the same house for 24 years without moving to be particularly close to their home’s value,” continues Dean Lamble, “but our research found that while their home is worth on average £289,000, their estimate was £290,000 – just £1,000 out.”