In 2016, the value of funds released from the capital value of homes in the UK exceeded £2 billion for the first time.
It appears that most of the money is being used to fund home and garden improvements and a smaller proportion to pay for holidays or to repay credit card and loan debts or to support other members of the family. So few people are as yet turning to equity release to supplement their retirement income.
Other factors may in future be influencing the growth in the equity release market. Both of the main political parties are eyeing the value locked up in family homes as a potential source of tax revenue, and whether it be on account of the mooted mansion tax or the so-called dementia tax, there could be merit in reducing the taxable value of the family home, while at the same time enjoying the other benefits of equity release.