"A lack of supply, the pressure of moving and the costs of downsizing mean for many, it is not always a practical choice."
80% of over 55s who opt for equity release did so to stay in their own home rather than downsize, according to new research from Standard Life and Age Partnership.
In addition, nearly one in ten (9%) said the reason they chose not to downsize was because of the cost associated with moving including stamp duty. In 2018 the average cost to buy and sell a property in the UK was £10,210 which includes an average bill of £1,800 for Stamp Duty.
The research also revealed that 4% of those polled chose equity release because they struggled to find another location or property they wanted to move to.
71% of people claimed the no negative equity guarantee influenced their decision to take out equity release. All equity release plans which are approved by the Equity Release Council include the no negative equity guarantee which ensures those releasing equity will never owe more than the value of their home.
Laura Laidlaw, head of customer communications at Standard Life, said: “For an increasing number of people, property – often the home they live in – could be the answer to freeing up extra money. Either to supplement income in later life or to gift to loved ones.
“Our research would suggest that the emotional aspect of remaining in your home is what leads many to opt for equity release. A lack of supply, the pressure of moving and the costs of downsizing mean for many, it is not always a practical choice.
“While downsizing can work in both a practical and financial sense for some, the ‘no negative equity’ guarantee means remaining in your home is a viable choice for many looking to use the value of their property to support their lifestyle in later life. Having a good understanding of the wide range of available options will go a long way to helping those nearing or in retirement do what is right for them.”