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What is an Equity Release plan?

An equity release plan allows homeowners to release equity (cash) from their home. There are two types of equity release; a lifetime mortage and a home reversion plan. Whilst both options allow you to release equity from your home, lifetime mortgages are the most popular plan option.

What is a Lifetime Mortgage?

A lifetime mortgage is a type of equity release plan where a home owner takes out a mortgage secured on their home whilst retaining ownership. The home owner continues to live in the property and usually does not have to make any repayments, but this can be considered. You can normally borrow up to 60% of the property value although this can vary depending on the property value and your age. When you die or move in to long term care the property is sold to repay the loan plus any interest accrued over the period of the plan. One great benefit of lifetime mortgages is the 'no negative equity gaurantee'. This means if when the property is sold the amount does not cover the loan, interest and fees neither you or your estate will be liable to pay anything further.

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What is a Home Reversion plan?

A home reversion plan allows you to sell all or some of your property to a home reversion provider. Generally the provider will offer 20% to 60% of the market value for the part you sell or for the full property. Once a plan has been agreed you can opt to recieve regular payments or a lump sum. You have the right to remain in the property until you die or move to long term care, at which point the property will be sold to repay the loan and any interest. This plan also offers 'no negative equity guarantee' which means you or your estate will not be liable to pay anything more should the sale of the property not repay the loan, interest and fees in full.

Overview

Equity release is, in a nutshell, a way to unlock the value of your property and turn it into cash which lets you access – or 'release' – the equity (cash) tied up in your home, if you're 55+. The most popular type of equity release is a lifetime mortgage, which is a loan secured against your home. You can release the money you release in a lump sum or in several smaller amounts following an initial lump sum.

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