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Top 10 equity release tips

Essential tips if you're considering releasing equity from your home

Expert equity release tips

If you're considering equity release, it's important you know all the facts. We've compiled our top ten tips to help you on your journey. They'll ensure you know your options and are able to plan ahead in the way that best suits you.

Top 10 tips

1. Consider your alternatives

We know that what’s right for some of us in retirement is not always the case for others. That’s why, if you decide to book an initial appointment with one of our equity release advisers, they’ll ensure you consider alternative options.

Some alternatives to equity release:
  1. Downsizing - Selling and moving to another property
  2. Other financial borrowing - Consider other forms of borrowing such as a conventional loan or mortgage
  3. Use other savings or investments - Think about your personal finances
  4. Assistance from family members - Your loved ones may be able to help
  5. Claiming all available benefits - Make sure you're getting all the benefits you're entitled to

2. Make sure you're eligible

To be eligible for equity release with Key, you must be a UK homeowner aged 55 or over with a property worth at least £70,000. Not eligible? Try our later life mortgage finder

3. Consider making partial repayments

Making partial repayments is an effective way of reducing the long-term cost of a lifetime mortgage. Some of our plans allow you to make partial repayments without an early repayment charge, subject to criteria. Any repayment you can make can reduce the long-term cost of borrowing.

4. Talk to your family

Talking to your family before considering equity release isn't something you have to do, but it is something that we always strongly recommend. If you decide to involve them, they can be present at your appointments.

If you don't want or are unable to involve family, we recommend talking to a trusted friend. Of course, if you'd like to speak to us alone, we'll always respect your decision.

5. Find out how much you could release

We have a free-to-use and no-obligation equity release calculator. You can use this tool to discover if you may be eligible for a lifetime mortgage, how much cash you could potentially unlock from your home, and which plans could be available to you.

Using this tool to find out how much you could release and whether you may be eligible for a lifetime mortgage could save you time.

6. Think about how much you need to borrow

As our equity release advisers will explain, you should only borrow for the things you need. It is important you make a detailed list of your spending plans as this could influence the type of plan that is most suitable for you.

If you want the money all at once you could opt for a lump sum lifetime mortgage. If you want to take out an initial amount, and then release further funds as and when you need to, you might choose a drawdown lifetime mortgage.


7. Your property valuation

The amount of money you can borrow will depend on your age as well as the value of your home. If you decide to go ahead with a lifetime mortgage, your home will be valued by an independent RICS registered surveyor. This valuation is important to help us consider the loan available to you.

8. Will you want to move in the future?

If you believe you may wish to move home after taking out a lifetime mortgage, this is something you should discuss with your equity release adviser. All of our plans meet the Equity Release Council standards, meaning you can move home and transfer your existing plan to your new property, subject to criteria.

9. Impact on means-tested benefits

The cash released using equity release could impact your eligibility for means-tested benefits, immediately, or in the future. Our equity release advisers will undertake a full benefits assessment during the equity release process to ensure you know exactly how you will be affected.

10. Get advice tailored to you

If you wish to go ahead with equity release, you have to take advice. It's a regulatory requirement. This is important for you to make sure you are making the right decision, and to find the right plan for you.

Our equity release advice is unique to you and your needs, delivered by fully-qualified equity release experts.

How to release equity from your home

Use our free calculator

Find out how much cash you could release tax-free from your home with our equity release calculator

Speak to an adviser

Book an appointment with a specialist equity release adviser at a time that's good for you

Unsure of your options?

Our later life mortgage finder helps you consider your options

Things to consider

Your specialist equity release adviser will explain:

  • Equity release will reduce the value of your estate and may affect your entitlement to means tested benefits
  • You have to get advice before releasing tax-free cash from your home - please read all our information and make sure it’s right for you
  • Our equity release advice relates to Key branded lifetime mortgages only, which is a loan secured against your home. Lifetime mortgages are the most popular form of equity release.
  • All of our plans meet the Equity Release Council standards and come with several protections, including the no negative equity guarantee, which means you’ll never owe more than your home’s value
  • All our equity release advice relates to our range of Key branded products only, and our fixed advice fee of £899 is only payable on completion
Page last updated: Wednesday 28 June 2023