Later Life

Equity release product choice reaches new record high

Rozi Jones
|
26th April 2021
equity release house plan mortgage sign house paper
"There are now over 500 deals available and since the start of this month, lenders have continued to launch and reprice their ranges."

The number of equity release options has breached 500 deals for the first time on record, according to analysis from Moneyfacts.

The figures show that the average rate has fallen from 6.15% five years ago to 4.07% today.

Additionally, the maximum LTV available across the market has remained steady, standing at 49% today, compared to 48% a year ago, and 49% five years ago.

Rachel Springall, finance expert at Moneyfacts, said: “It’s great to see lenders working hard to cater to borrower demand as we reveal the number of equity release options have reached levels never seen before. There are now over 500 deals available and since the start of this month, lenders have continued to launch and reprice their ranges. The average rate is now 4.07%, so it has increased slightly from the record low seen in March 2021 of 3.86%, but predominantly we are seeing lenders reduce rates this month.

“Those borrowers considering releasing wealth out of their home will be pleased to see that the maximum LTV has remained stable over the years, currently at an average of 49%, with the most notable change in the market being the rise in choice and more attractive interest rates on offer. Over the past two years, the average equity release rate has dropped by 1.02% and there are 323 more options on the market to assess, and overall the market remains resilient despite the coronavirus pandemic.

“According to a recent report from the Equity Release Council, the volume of new lifetime mortgages taken out during H2 2020 rose by 19% compared to the first six months of the year. The report also revealed that over-55s withdrew 46p of property wealth for every £1 of flexible pension payments in H2 2020, in line with 2019. This demonstrates how the wealth in property can play a part in retirement planning, but opting for equity release should not be a decision taken lightly, such as the impact it has on passing inheritance to family members.

“The right choice will depend on personal circumstances and there are many factors with a lifetime mortgage to consider, such as associated fees and any flexibility with drawing wealth out of the home such as with a drawdown option. Hopefully, we will continue to see resilience in the market in the months to come as we ease out of lockdown.”

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