Equity release is a way of turning the value tied into your home into cash. It is becoming increasingly popular today and more and more people want to use this option to use some of their home equity to generate additional income during retirement. There are many equity release plans available from several different providers.
Retirement is known as the golden period of life, when one is finally free to do what one wants. But ironically, it is during retirement that cash flow can be a problem and this can limit one’s freedom in so many ways. A pension is generally the main source of income during retirement, which may not always be enough to maintain a comfortable lifestyle. This is why more and more homeowners are considering equity release plans as a way to supplementing their income.
Some people have enough income to support their day to day life, but the problem arises when there is a relatively big one-off expense that needs to be made. This could be anything from home improvement work, to a dream holiday! The released equity can be taken in regular monthly installments or as a lump sum and one off expenses is another reason why people consider releasing equity from their home.
There is absolutely no restriction on what you can use the money for. The proceeds you get from equity release plans are tax free and could be used for a variety of purposes, depending on personal needs. Some common uses of equity release proceeds are home improvement works, buying a new car, investing in a second property or paying for care in your home. Another common use is to gift money to children and family or as supplementary income.
Equity release plans are many and varied. As the concept caught on and became popular, more providers entered the market and equity release schemes became flexible. Increased competition among providers has resulted in a customer-friendly market, with favourable interest rates and better terms of contract. Equity release schemes are now fully regulated by the FSA (Financial Services Authority) which was not always been the case.
Equity release plans can be a good way to generate usable cash from the equity built on your property without selling the house. Obviously, equity release does have some potential risks and disadvantages, and is not for everyone. To understand more about how equity release works and whether it’s right for you, seek the advice of an independent financial expert.