Increasing number of people turn to equity release amidst mortgage rate rise

16th August 2023

New research by 55Plus has found that equity release cases across the industry has rapidly increased this year, as homeowners over 55 look for solutions to combat rising residential mortgage rates. The company says it has witnessed an increase in enquiries from people looking to remortgage, as a direct result. 

Jan Johnson, Founder and Director of 55Plus, said “After more than a decade of residential rates at 0.75% or below, this has left many homeowners whose fixed deals are ending, and those on tracker mortgages, facing huge blows to their finances and even losing their homes as a result. We urge all homeowners over 55 to look at all options available to them.”

“Expectations that borrowing costs might rise even further has pushed up mortgage rates. This month, the average residential rate on a two-year fixed deal hit a 15 year high of 6.66%.”

New figures, obtained by 55Plus, from financial services provider Canada Life, revealed that nearly half (44%) of all equity release applications were to remortgage from January to March 2023.

Steven Scales, Proposition Director, Home Finance, Canada Life said “With rising interest rates, coupled with a prolonged cost of living crisis, some homeowners reaching the end of fixed deals or on variable rates are facing repossession or being forced to sell up.”

“In today’s unpredictable economic environment, equity release can offer peace of mind and certainty for homeowners aged 55 and over, especially given the rise in house prices in the last few years. Whether you are being confronted by the possibility of repossession, or simply want to free up some cash from your home, it is worth speaking to an independent financial adviser to understand your options.”