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January, 2020
Retired homeowners released £3.4bn of equity in 2019

Retired homeowners released £3.4bn of property wealth in 2019, data from Key’s market monitor shows.

According to Key, this overall figure translated to £9.5m of property wealth released a day, with the average customer receiving £75,631.

The quantity of property wealth released by retired homeowners fell by 4% between 2018 and 2019, a decline from £3.8bn.

In Q3 2019, £887m of equity was released with a further 11,722 planned sales. In comparison, in Q4 £921m of equity was released with a further 11,820 planned sales, Key suggests this demonstrates a rise in consumer confidence.

Drawdown plans accounted for 73% of the market last year, up from 64% in 2018.

Additionally, enhanced drawdown plans accounted for 20% of health or lifestyle sales, and 27% for lifetime mortgages.

The data outlines that 29% of equity release customers in 2019 used some or all of the cash to pay off loans or credit cards, while 20 per cent used money to clear existing mortgages.

Key chief executive Will Hale says: “2019 has been a busy year for the sector, there are now more funders than ever before in the market and more than 300 different plans as well as growing consumer interest.

“That said, we did not see the continued double-digit growth that we have seen in recent years as consumers unsettled by current economic and political events chose to defer decisions around how housing equity might help them in later life.

“Although we saw small year-on-year falls in the value and volume of equity release taken out, the last two quarters were more upbeat and we start the year with a positive headwind fuelling the belief that we will continue to see growth in the equity release market.”