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Mis-sold Equity Release. What Is Equity Release All About And Are you Entitled To Compensation?

MIS-SOLD EQUITY RELEASE. BUT FIRST WHAT IS EQUITY RELEASE ABOUT AND ARE YOU INTITLED TO COMPENSATON?



Equity release is a way to access the value of your home without having to sell it or move out. It can be a useful option for some people who need extra income or cash in later life, but it also has some drawbacks and risks that you should be aware of. Here are some of the pros and cons of equity release:

Pros:

  • You can get a lump sum or regular income from your home, which you can use for any purpose, such as paying off debts, home improvements, long-term care, or enjoying your retirement.

  • You can stay in your home for as long as you live or until you move into permanent care, and you don’t have to make any monthly repayments (unless you choose to do so).

  • You can benefit from any increase in the value of your home over time, depending on the type of equity release plan you choose.

  • You are protected by the Equity Release Council’s standards and safeguards, which ensure that you can never owe more than the value of your home, and that you have the right to remain in your home for life or move to another suitable property.

  • You can get independent advice from a qualified equity release adviser, who will help you find the best plan for your situation and explain all the costs and implications.

Cons:

  • Equity release reduces the value of your estate and the amount of inheritance you can leave to your family or beneficiaries. This may affect their future plans and financial security.

  • Equity release can affect your eligibility for means-tested benefits, such as pension credit, council tax support, or universal credit. This may reduce your income or increase your expenses in the long run.

  • Equity release can be expensive, as the interest on your loan accumulates over time and is added to the amount you owe. The interest rate may be higher than other types of borrowing, and there may be additional fees and charges involved.

  • Equity release is a long-term commitment that may be difficult to reverse or change. If you want to repay your loan early, move to a different property, or switch to a different plan, you may have to pay a substantial penalty or exit fee.

  • Equity release may not be the best option for everyone, depending on your personal circumstances, needs, and goals. There may be other alternatives that are more suitable or cost-effective for you, such as downsizing, renting out a room, or borrowing from family or friends.

As you can see, equity release has both advantages and disadvantages that you need to weigh carefully before making a decision. It is important to get professional advice from an independent equity release adviser who can help you understand all the options and risks involved. You can also use online tools such as equity release calculators or comparison websites to get an idea of how much money you could release and how it would affect your finances.


The amount of money you can get from equity release depends on several factors, such as:

  • Your age: The older you are, the more you can borrow.

  • Your health: If you have certain medical conditions or lifestyle factors, you may qualify for enhanced terms and borrow more.

  • Your property value: The higher the value of your home, the more equity you can release.

  • Your property type: Some lenders may have restrictions or limits on certain types of properties, such as flats, leaseholds, or listed buildings.

  • The interest rate: The lower the interest rate, the less interest you will pay over time and the more money you will have left in your estate.

To get an estimate of how much money you can get from equity release, you can use online tools such as equity release calculators or comparison websites. These tools will ask you some basic questions about your age, property value, and health, and then show you the minimum and maximum amounts you can borrow from different lenders and plans.


However, these tools are only for guidance and do not guarantee the actual amount you can get from equity release. The final amount will depend on a detailed assessment of your personal circumstances, needs, and goals by a qualified equity release adviser. They will also explain all the costs and implications of equity release and help you find the best plan for your situation.


If you are interested in finding out more about equity release and getting a personalised quote, I can connect you with an independent equity release adviser who can offer you free and impartial advice. You do not want to be mis-sold equity release.


The typical interest rates for equity release vary depending on the type of product, the lender, and the market conditions. According to some web sources, the average equity release interest rate is around 5.74% as of October 2023, but some rates are as low as 2.78% or as high as 9.04%. These rates are usually fixed for life, meaning they will not change over time.


Equity release interest rates are influenced by the Bank of England’s base rate, which has increased from 0.75% in March 2020 to 4% in February 2023. This means that borrowing costs have risen for both lenders and borrowers, and this is reflected in the higher equity release rates.


However, equity release interest rates are not the only factor that affects the cost of equity release. You also need to consider the fees and charges involved, such as arrangement fees, valuation fees, legal fees, and advice fees. These can add up to a significant amount and reduce the net amount of money you can get from equity release.


Another important factor is how you deal with the interest payments. Depending on the product you choose, you may have the option to pay some or all of the interest monthly, or to roll it up and add it to your loan balance. If you choose the latter option, you will pay interest on your interest, and your debt will grow faster over time. This will reduce the amount of equity left in your home and the inheritance you can leave to your family or beneficiaries.


Therefore, before you decide to take out equity release, you should compare different products and lenders, and get independent advice from a qualified equity release adviser. They will help you find the best plan for your situation and explain all the costs and implications of equity release. You can also use online tools such as equity release calculators or comparison websites to get an idea of how much money you could release and how it would affect your finances.


According to some web sources, the equity release process will typically take about eight weeks from start to finish, though it may be longer or shorter depending on your circumstances. There are several steps involved in the process, such as getting advice, completing the application form, getting your property valued, receiving the formal offer, getting legal advice, and completing the paperwork. Each step may take a different amount of time depending on the complexity of your case and the availability of the professionals involved.


If you want to speed up the process, you can do some things to prepare yourself and avoid delays. For example, you can:

  • Gather all the relevant documents you need, such as proof of identity, income, property ownership, and outstanding mortgage.

  • Choose an independent equity release adviser who is experienced and qualified to help you find the best plan for your situation.

  • Choose a solicitor who is a member of the Equity Release Council and familiar with equity release products and processes.

  • Respond to any queries or requests from your adviser, lender, or solicitor as soon as possible.

  • Check all the details and terms of your equity release plan carefully before signing anything.

You can get equity release if you have an outstanding mortgage on your property, but there are some conditions and limitations that you should be aware of.


First of all, you need to have enough equity in your home to qualify for equity release. Equity is the difference between the value of your home and the amount you owe on your mortgage. Most equity release lenders will only lend you up to 80% or 85% of your available equity, which means you need to have at least 15% or 20% of your home value as equity.


Secondly, you need to use some of the money you get from equity release to pay off your existing mortgage. This is because equity release lenders will not accept a second charge on your property, which means they want to be the only ones who have a claim on your home if you default or pass away. Therefore, you need to clear your mortgage debt before you can access the remaining funds from equity release.


Thirdly, you need to consider the costs and implications of equity release compared to your current mortgage. Equity release usually has higher interest rates than standard mortgages, and the interest is compounded over time, which means your debt will grow faster. Also, equity release will reduce the value of your estate and the inheritance you can leave to your family or beneficiaries. You may also lose some of the benefits or tax advantages that come with having a mortgage.


Therefore, before you decide to get equity release with an existing mortgage, you should compare different products and lenders, and get independent advice from a qualified equity release adviser. They will help you find the best plan for your situation and explain all the costs and implications of equity release. You can also use online tools such as equity release calculators or comparison websites to get an idea of how much money you could release and how it would affect your finances.


Equity release is a loan that you take out against the value of your home, and you don’t have to repay it until you sell your home, die, or move into long-term care. If you die before repaying equity release, there are some things that you or your family should know:

  • The equity release provider will need to be notified of your death by the executor of your estate or your next of kin.

  • The equity release loan will be due for repayment within a certain period of time, usually 12 months, but some providers may allow up to 3 years.

  • The loan will be repaid from the sale proceeds of your home, which will need to be vacated by your family or beneficiaries.

  • The amount owed will include the initial amount borrowed and the interest accrued over time, which can be quite high depending on the interest rate and the duration of the loan.

  • If your home is worth more than the amount owed, the remaining balance will be distributed to your estate according to your will or the law of intestacy.

  • If your home is worth less than the amount owed, you or your family will not have to pay the difference, thanks to the negative equity guarantee that most providers offer. This means that you can never owe more than the value of your home.

  • If your family or beneficiaries want to keep your home, they may be able to pay off the loan from other sources, such as savings, investments, or inheritance. However, they will need to get permission from the provider and may have to pay a higher interest rate or a penalty fee.

Equity release is a complex and long-term financial decision that can have significant implications for your estate and your family. Therefore, it is important to get independent advice from a qualified equity release adviser before taking out a plan. They will help you find the best option for your situation and explain all the costs and risks involved. You can also use online tools such as equity release calculators or comparison websites to get an estimate of how much money you can release and how it would affect your finances.


The negative equity guarantee is a feature of some equity release products that protects you from owing more than the value of your home when you sell it or die. It means that even if the interest on your loan accumulates to a point where it exceeds the value of your home, you or your estate will not have to pay the difference. This way, you can avoid getting into debt or leaving a burden for your family or beneficiaries.


Equity release is a way to access the money that is locked up in your home without having to move out or make monthly repayments. However, it also has some costs and risks that you should be aware of before deciding to take out a plan. One of these risks is the possibility of negative equity, which occurs when your home decreases in value or the interest on your loan increases over time.


To prevent this from happening, most equity release providers offer a no negative equity guarantee as part of their product standards. This guarantee ensures that you will never owe more than the value of your home, regardless of how long you live or how much interest you accrue. If your home is sold for less than the amount you owe, the provider will write off the difference and you or your estate will not have to pay anything extra.


The no negative equity guarantee is one of the safeguards that protect you from the potential pitfalls of equity release. However, it is not the only factor that you should consider when choosing a plan. You should also compare different products and lenders, and get independent advice from a qualified equity release adviser. They will help you find the best option for your situation and explain all the costs and implications of equity release.


You can also use online tools such as equity release calculators or comparison websites to get an estimate of how much money you can release and how it would affect your finances.


NOTE: Information contained in this article is for general purposes only. Contents, statistics and legislation may not be current or applicable to your personal circumstances. You are strongly advised to seek professional advice before making any financial decisions.



If you think you have been mis-sold equity release contact Claimline Legal on 0800 779 7457 or go to www.missoldequityrelease.co.uk

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