19/04/2018 by Matthew Standish CeMAP CeRER 0 Comments
Equity release lending more than doubles in two years to reach £870m in Q1 2018
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First-quarter lending activity in the equity release market has more than doubled in the space of two years between 2016 and 2018, according to the latest quarterly lending figures¹ from the Equity Release Council (The Council).
Homeowners aged 55+ released £870m from the value of their homes from January to March 2018: an increase of 120% from £394m in Q1 2016. The data reveals a similar trend in new customer numbers, which have almost doubled from 5,175 to 10,195 over the same period: a rise of 97%.
The trend shows how equity release has become a more widespread financial choice among the over-55s as a way to use their property assets to help meet their financial needs. As a result of this increased activity, older homeowners unlocked nearly £10m (£9.7m) of housing wealth every day from January to March 2018: up from £4.3m a day during Q1 2016.
Increased demand has been met by an increase in product options available to consumers, which rose from 69 in January 2017 to 86 in January 2018 according to The Council’s Spring 2018 Market Report. Competition has in turn driven greater innovation with new flexibilities coming to market. Over two
thirds (70%) of product options now offer consumers the choice to make ad-hoc, penalty-free voluntary or partial repayments of their loan.