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Retired homeowners earn £1,000 from their houses

28 June 2019

Retired homeowners saw their property wealth increase by more than £1,000 in the past year despite ongoing housing market uncertainty, analysis* from UK’s leading independent equity release adviser Key shows.
Total property wealth owned by over-65s who have paid off mortgages is valued at £1.096 trillion – this is a fall from the £1,118 trillion recorded earlier in the year (February 2019) as the impact of market slowdown starts to be felt across the board. However on an annual basis (June 2018 to June 2019) retired homeowners still saw an increase of £5.445 billion, Key’s Pensioner Property Equity Index reveals.
Since Key started analysing the mortgage-free property wealth of the over-65s in 2010 retired homeowners have benefited from growth of 41% - a total of more than £316 billion - earning them gains of £67,000 in almost a decade.  Across Great Britain average gains for the over-65s in property wealth in the past year are equivalent to £1,160 each but the national average does not tell the whole story.
The biggest winners are over-65s in the West Midlands who are nearly £7,500 better off than a year ago with retired homeowners in Wales (£6,560) and the North West (£6,297) also recording strong gains in the past 12 months.
Retired mortgage-free homeowners in London, however, have lost more than £1,000 a month in the past year while over-65s in the South East and East Anglia have also seen property wealth values drop. Scottish retired homeowners saw property wealth slip slightly.
London and the South East still account for more than a third (34%) of all property wealth held by retired homeowners despite the recent falls.
Will Hale, CEO at Key said: “The ongoing uncertainty in the property market and the economy as a whole is having an impact on house prices but overall retired homeowners have still gained an average of more than £1,000 from their houses in the past year.
“Some parts of the country have experienced even bigger gains with the West Midlands, North West and Wales continuing to perform strongly.  The basic fact is that no matter what happens month to month to house prices millions of over-65s will continue to hold considerable property wealth which can transform their standard of living in retirement and enable them to address a wide range of financial issues. 
“Increasingly equity release customers are able to help their adult children or even grandchildren to pay for house deposits while also being able to sort out their own finances whether it is clearing debts or even paying off mortgages.  Equity release is not right for everyone but it is clear that if your home is your largest asset you should take some time to assess what role property wealth can play in retirement planning. Speaking to a specialist adviser is key to making smart choices.”
The table below shows the detailed picture across Great Britain with seven areas seeing growth and four recording losses.

Average change in value of home equity for homeowners aged 65+ (past year) Combined change in value of home equity for homeowners aged 65+ (past year)
South East Down £4,982 -£3.268 billion
London Down £12,144 -£4.444 billion
South West Up £3,981 +£2.438 billion
North West Up £6,297 +£4.225 billion
East Anglia Down £1,278 -£603.216 million
East Midlands Up £5,463 +£2.355 billion
West Midlands Up £7,455 +£2.671 billion
Yorks/Humbs Up £434 +£125.252 million
Scotland Down £247 -£69.654 million
Wales Up £6,560 +£1.735 billion
North East Up £1,016 +£279.4 million
GREAT BRITAIN Up £1,160 +£5.445 billion
The table below shows more over-65s in the North West have paid off mortgages with 671,000 owning their homes outright compared with 656,000 in the South East. However nearly a fifth of all property wealth held by retired homeowners is in the South East.

Estimated property equity in homes owned outright by people aged 65+ Estimated percentage of total value of property equity belonging to people aged 65+ Number of households in the region owned outright by people aged 65+ Number of over-65s households in the region
South East £207.099 billion 18.89% 656,000 1,130,300
London £168.286 billion 15.35% 366,000 674,780
South West £158.987 billion 14.5% 626,600 787,000
East Anglia £136.944 billion 12.49% 472,000 782,690
North West £109.881 billion 10.02% 671,000 873,590
East Midlands £82.013 billion 7.48% 431,200 591,900
West Midlands £70.300 billion 6.41% 358,400 701,270
Yorks/Humbs £44.930 billion 4.1% 288,600 653,860
Wales £42.219 billion 3.85% 264,600 419,380
Scotland £41.104 billion 3.66% 282,000 660,070
North East £34.484 billion 3.15% 275,000 335,430
GREAT BRITAIN £1.096 trillion   4,691,400 7,610,270
 Anyone looking to release equity from their home can get Key’s independent guide to equity release by calling 0800 531 6027 or visiting
Notes to Editors
* Key’s Pensioner Property Equity Index tracks the amount of equity held in property by people over 65 years old in Great Britain. Figures are based on analysis of data from the ONS Family Spending Report (2014), the UK House Price Index, Registers of Scotland House Price Statistics and ICM (2014) and Key’s UK Equity Release Market Monitor.
Lee Blackwell
Director of Public Relations and Public Affairs
Key Retirement Group
E-mail: [email protected]
Rachel Mann
Key Retirement Group
01772 508322
E-mail: [email protected]
Citigate Dewe Rogerson
Katie Ormrod
0207 025 6440
E-mail: [email protected]
About Key:
Part of Key Retirement Group, Key is the UK’s largest independent equity release broker – committed to high levels of customer service and the belief that good advice is key to ensuring people make smart sustainable choices around how they use their housing equity.
With over 60 industry and consumer awards under their belt, the Key team offer advice on equity release, later life mortgages and retirement interest-only products. The company also provides support with estate planning including wills and lasting power of attorneys.
Key is committed to putting customers at the heart of what it does and has a score of 9.8 from over 14,500 scores on the independent review site, Trustpilot. 
Based in Preston, Key is committed to being independent, transparent and straightforward.

Page last updated: Thursday 04 July 2019