If you’re considering equity release, you’ll potentially have a list of questions that you will want answering before deciding whether it is right for you. To assist you in obtaining all the information that you require we have put together some of the more popular questions our clients have asked us.

Do I qualify for a lifetime mortgage?

If you are aged over 55 and your residential property is worth at least £70,000 then you should be able to release equity from your home by using a lifetime mortgage. However, all providers have their own specific lending criteria, and to ensure that you qualify then please call one of our regional offices.

Is a lifetime mortgage safe?

We are regulated and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) for equity release advice. All our experts have the appropriate qualifications and follow the strict rules and guidelines required of them to ensure that they provide you with the correct advice.

The Equity Release Council (ERC) is the industry body for the equity release sector. As members of the ERC we adhere to a further higher standard of guidelines and only recommend plans from providers who are also members. All providers who are members must offer plans that provide guarantees, such as a no negative equity guarantee, and the right to remain in your property for life.

Can I consider equity release if I've have an existing mortgage?

Yes, but you will need to fully pay off your current mortgage, and any other lending secured on your property, as part of any equity release plan that is put in place.

Who owns my home if I proceed with an equity release plan?

This depends whether you proceed with a lifetime mortgage or a home reversion plan.

If you take out a lifetime mortgage you will remain the owner of your home.

If you take out a home reversion plan you sell all, or part, of your home to the reversion provider in exchange for a cash lump sum- please note we do not arrange home reversion plans.

With either type of plan you will be guaranteed the right to stay in your home until you and your partner (if it is a joint plan) pass away or move into long term care.

How much can I borrow?

The amount you can borrow depends on various factors such as: –

  • The age of the youngest applicant
  • Your property value
  • Your health and lifestyle choices

Please see our free equity release calculator to obtain an indication of how much you could release.

How much will releasing equity in my home cost me?

Our initial consultation and recommendation to you is completely free. We will charge you any fees until you look to proceed with an application. Our typical fee is £995, and this is only payable upon commencement of your plan.

You are likely to incur costs for surveyor’s fees and solicitor’s fees, as well as the provider’s arrangement fees. These will vary depending on the provider, but these will be fully disclosed within the consultation process.

Do I have to make monthly repayments on a lifetime mortgage?

Typically, there are no monthly repayments to make, with the loan plus ‘roll up’ interest being repaid when the plan comes to an end. The total amount owing to the provider will then be paid from the sale of your home.

However, you can choose to take a plan where you do make monthly interest payments where the initial loan amount will be paid when the plan comes to the end.

Can I remain in my home for the rest of my life?

We only recommend lifetime mortgages which guarantee you can stay in your home for as long as you wish. However, this is subject to you adhering to the terms and conditions of the plan.

Will my family end up in debt because of my lifetime mortgage?

As all the plans that we recommend are from providers that are members of The Equity Release Council, they all provided a no negative equity guarantee. This means you will never owe more than the value of your home.

What happens if I move into long-term care?

If you took out a joint plan, your partner would be able to continue to live in your home.

If you took out a plan in your sole name, your home would be sold, and the provider would receive the money owing to them from the proceeds. Any remaining monies are paid to you.

What happens when I pass away?

If you took out a joint plan and your partner survives you, then your plan will not be affected, and they will be able to remain in the home for as long as they choose.

If you took out a plan in your sole name, your house will be sold, and the provider will take their money from the sale proceeds. The remainder will go to your estate.

Should I discuss the concept equity release with my family?

Definitely. We find that most families are incredibly supportive of their loved ones’ decision to take out a lifetime mortgage or home reversion plan.

It is important to ensure that your family understands the impact of the plan on the value of the inheritance left to them.

We strongly recommend that our clients invite as many family members that they wish to their consultation meeting, to ensure that everyone gets a full picture of all of the options before any decisions are made.

How long does the process of attaining a lifetime mortgage take to complete?

Typically, it will take between 8-12 weeks from application to completion. However, we cannot guarantee this timescale, and in some circumstances,  it may take longer.

If you’re considering releasing equity we strongly advise that you read is a lifetime mortgage right for you? or call one of our regional offices to discuss all your options in full detail.