Almost 3 million over-40s plan to release equity from their home

Over a tenth (12%) of UK homeowners aged 40 and above would consider releasing equity from their property to supplement retirement income, with the average age they would consider doing so being 66, according to new research released today by Canada Life.A similar amount (12%) of homeowners over the age of 40 plan on downsizing their property.


The research shows that younger homeowners are considering including equity release in their financial planning, more than their older counterparts. 15% of homeowners aged 40-64 are thinking about or planning to release equity from their property, compared to just 9% for those aged 65 and over.


Among those not planning to release equity from their property, their main reason for not doing so is driven by wanting their property wealth to go to their family (36%). Other reasons for homeowners not releasing equity include:

  • Thinking equity release has a bad reputation (28%)
  • Believing debt in retirement is bad (26%)
  • Reading negative media coverage of equity release (20%)
  • Selling outright and downsizing (16%)
  • Believing it is too expensive (15%)


Alice Watson, Head of Marketing, Insurance, Canada Life said: “There are many homeowners who are still unaware of the benefits of releasing equity from their properties, or are reluctant to consider it due to misunderstanding the product. For many homeowners, equity release can be an effective way to fund retirement, or simply boost income, while allowing them to stay in their forever homes and enjoy the retirement lifestyle they have wished for. As an industry, we must dispel these myths and highlight the valuable role property wealth can play as part of a holistic retirement plan.”




  1. The headline figure of ‘nearly three million over 40s’ was derived by dividing the number of 40+ homeowners planning/thinking about releasing equity from their home (126 people) by the total 40+ homeowner sample size (1,020) and multiplying this by the number of 40+ homeowners in the UK (22,600,453)
  2. Source: Research among 1,020 UK homeowners aged 40+ conducted by Opinium Research between 26-31 March 2021.