Mortgage free retired homeowners saw their homes increase by nearly £1,000 a month over the past six months despite housing market uncertainty, analysis from UK’s leading independent equity release adviser Key shows. Total property wealth owned by over-65s who are mortgage free is at a new record high of £1.118 trillion with the average homeowners seeing the value of their homes grow by £28 billion.
Across Great Britain, average gains for the over 65s in property wealth are worth £5,998 each with all areas of the country benefiting in the past six months. Homeowners in Yorkshire and Humberside (+£8,607) have seen the biggest increases followed by those in Wales (+£7,875) and the North West (+£7,546) have also done better than average (+£5,889).
Retired, mortgage free homeowners in London (+£1,655) have the least to celebrate and have only just matched over six months the same amount over-65s in Yorkshire & Humberside have achieved in a month (+£1,435). Key’s index demonstrates the long-term investment success of home ownership and the value of housing wealth for retirement planning.
Those in Yorkshire and Humberside have seen the biggest increases (+£8,607), followed by homeowners in Wales (+£7,875) and the North West (+£7,546).
Retired, mortgage-free homeowners in London have seen property values rise by an average of just £1,655 in six months.
Over-65s in the North West are most likely to own outright with 671,000 having paid off mortgages compared with 656,000 in the South East.
However nearly a fifth of all property wealth held by retired homeowners is in the South East.
Will Hale, CEO at Key said: “The numbers are fascinating but the basic fact is that no matter what happens year to year to house prices many over-65s will have considerable property wealth which can transform their standard of living in retirement and help family members.
“Increasingly equity release customers are able to make substantial gifts to family members including their adult children or even grandchildren with money being used to clear debts, fund university fees and pay for house deposits and weddings. Customers can also use the money to ‘age-proof’ their own homes and preserve wealth for the family.
“While equity release is not right for everyone, it is clear that if your home is your largest asset in retirement, you should take some time to think through when and if you might need to access this wealth. Speaking to a specialist adviser is key to making smart choices.”