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Pensioner property wealth hits £891 billion

28 September 2015

Over-65 homeowners are £3,700 better off on average over three months, Key Retirement Pensioner Property Index shows

Retired homeowners have seen their property wealth grow by nearly £17.5 billion in the past three months as house prices continue to climb earning the average pensioner more than £1,200 a month, new analysis* from leading over-55s financial specialist Key Retirement shows.

Pensioners who own their homes outright have gained an average of £3,725 each from their houses in the past three months taking their property wealth to a new record high.

In the five years since Key started monitoring the housing wealth of the over-65s, in January 2010, total pensioner property wealth has increased by 14% or £111 billion which equates to £23,700 on average for every homeowner.

Its Pensioner Property Index shows over-65 homeowners now own property wealth of £891.249 billion outright with pensioners across almost all of the UK benefiting.

Key believes the strong growth in property prices will drive expansion of the equity release market further which enables homeowners to release wealth from their homes. Customers releasing property wealth are taking around £68,500 on average, its figures show.

Retired homeowners in London were the biggest winners gaining an average of around £14,238 each in the past three months, while homeowners in the South East of England are more than £8,290 better off and pensioners in East Anglia are £8,524 better off.

Key's figures show a fifth of all pensioner property equity is owned by over-65s in London with total wealth of £178.894 billion. Nearly two-thirds of pensioner property wealth is concentrated in London, the South East, the South West and East Anglia.

Dean Mirfin, technical director at Key (www.keyadvice.co.uk), said: "The strength of the housing market is reflected in the growth in the amounts being released through equity release plans which are now an average £68,500 - an amount which dwarfs the average pension pot in the UK.

"The success of property investment for millions of over-65s homeowners highlights how homes are major assets which should be considered as part of anyone's retirement planning.

"Property prices rise and fall but over-65 homeowners control more than £891 billion in assets which can make a major contribution to enhancing retirement lifestyles. Pensioners however need specialist advice before accessing their property wealth."

The table below shows the 11 areas of Great Britain monitored by Key's index with 10 recording gains.
 

Region Average change in value of home equity for homeowners aged 65+ (between May and August index) Combined change in value of home equity for homeowners aged 65+ (between May and August index)
London increase of £14,238 +£5.211 billion
South East increase of £8,290 +£5.438 billion
South West increase of £1,549 +£970.603 million
North West increase of £763 +£511.973 million
East Anglia increase of £8,524 +£4.023 billion
East Midlands increase of £1,567 +£675.69 million
West Midlands increase of £2,404 +£861.593 million
Scotland £6,065 decrease -£1.710 billion
Yorks/Humbs increase of £192 +£55.411 million
Wales increase of £3,059 +£809.411 million
North East increase of £2,296 +£631.4 million
GREAT BRITAIN +£3,725 +£17.478 billion

The table below shows over-65 homeowners in the North West are most likely to own their home outright - Key's analysis shows 671,000 own their homes without mortgages compared with 656,000 in the South East.
 
Region Estimated property equity in homes owned outright by people aged 65+ (August 2015) Estimated percentage of total value of property equity belonging to people aged 65+ (August 2015) Number of households in the region owned outright by people aged 65+
London £178.894 billion 20.07% 366,000
South East £165.658 billion 18.59% 656,000
South West £119.678 billion 13.43% 626,600
East Anglia £99.114 billion 11.12% 472,000
North West £76.536 billion 8.59% 671,100
East Midlands £58.901 billion 6.61% 431,200
West Midlands £50.005 billion 5.61% 358,400
Scotland £47.309 billion 5.3% 282,000
Yorks/Humbs £35.689 billion 4% 288,600
Wales £31.776 billion 3.57% 264,600
North East £27.684 billion 3.11% 275,000
GREAT BRITAIN £891.249 billion   4,691,500

Anyone looking to release equity from their home can get Key's independent guide to equity release by calling 0800 531 6010 or visiting www.keyadvice.co.uk/equity-release/request-a-free-guide