Older homeowners are getting right behind the concept of equity release, with lending levels in the first quarter of the year 2014 coming in at the highest ever.
The Equity Release Council (ERC) has indicated that £315.5 million was released between January and March this year, the first time Q1 has seen a figure surpass £300 million since records began in 2007. It also marks a ginormous 35 per cent up-turn compared to the same period in 2013.
Nigel Waterson, the chairman of the ERC, remarks that `for a generation who have huge amounts of wealth tied up in property but a shortage of savings to support their retirement, equity release is providing financial stability to a growing number of older homeowners`.
Drawdown mortgages remain the most popular form of equity released, with £182.5 million lent in the first quarter of this year. However, the lump sum option is growing in popularity too, rising from £87.8 million in the first three months of 2013 to £131.8 million this year.
Mr Waterson concludes that homeowners are generally withdrawing a quarter of their property`s value, giving them `a substantial sum to help boost their income, clear existing debts, take on home improvement projects or pursue new activities and interests in later life, while still allowing many to preserve an inheritance to leave behind`.
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