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  • Writer's pictureClive Balchin

What is the downside of equity release?

Equity Release might be right for you, but it’s important to think about both the pros and cons before making important decisions.


Equity release can be a tempting financial solution for those over 55 looking to tap into the value of their homes. It provides a way to access cash, typically tax-free, while still retaining ownership of your property. However, like any financial arrangement, there are downsides to consider.


Advantages


Equity Release schemes are regulated and are a safe way to access some of the cash tied up in your home.


The cash is typically tax-free. It can be taken as a lump sum or in installments.


You can use the cash in any way you wish.


You’ll never owe more than your home is worth. As a member of the Equity Release Council, we offer a ‘no negative equity guarantee’.


No debt will ever be transferred to your family.


Disadvantages


Your debt is increased by interest. As a lifetime mortgage doesn't have to be repaid until you die or go into long term care, the amount owed could grow rapidly over the years.


Releasing equity can affect any benefits you receive. The extra funds you receive might push you above the income threshold making you ineligible for certain benefits.


Should you decide to repay your equity release loan early, you might encounter early repayment charges (ERCs).


You can’t leave your home as inheritance. When you die, or move our permanently, your property may need to be sold to repay the scheme provider first.


While equity release offers a financial lifeline, there is a lot to consider. Before proceeding, it's important to consult with a financial adviser to weigh the benefits and drawbacks. As well as to determine if it aligns with your long-term financial goals and circumstances.


Get in touch with Clive today for an open discussion as whether this is the right avenue for you and your family.



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