- 14% of equity release customers using funds to support the cost of day-to-day living in Q1.
- Over a third (36%) of customers used equity release to clear an existing mortgage
- A quarter of customers (25%) used equity release to fund home improvements
Canada Life customer data has revealed that 14% of applications in Q1 were from customers looking to support their day-to-day living costs, potentially a side effect of rising inflation and surging cost of living in the UK. 12% of applications were also made in order to consolidate unsecured debts.
Over a third (36%) of applications in Q1 were from customers looking to clear the remainder of their mortgage. However, people were still keen to make home improvements in Q1, with a quarter releasing equity for this purpose.
Customers also continued to use equity release to make substantial one-off purchases such as booking a holiday (10%), buying a new property (9%), or buying a car (8%).
Alice Watson, head of marketing, insurance at Canada Life comments on the results:
“Understanding the reasons why customers seek to release equity from their homes can provide an interesting snapshot into the lifestyles and needs of our customers. Record-breaking inflation and a surging cost of living is understandably leading many people to take an informal audit of their outgoings and where their wealth lies.
“From this quarter’s results we can see that the desire to clear a mortgage continues to be a strong driver to pursuing equity release but we’ve also seen a continuous flow of people turning to equity release in order to cover their daily living expenses or consolidate debts, the demand likely being driven by the current cost of living crisis.
“The variety of reasons given for releasing equity highlight the flexibility and accessibility of modern products allowing families the ability to enjoy their retirements comfortably in a way that suits them. However, equity release is a lifelong financial decision, so it is essential that people seek financial advice and talk through their decision with loved ones before agreeing to a product.”