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Five reasons to seek advice when releasing equity

Equity release is a big financial commitment, and you'll need to speak with an equity release adviser before you make your decision. Read on for some of the ways your adviser can help you through the process.

1. They can give you advice tailored to your needs

A regulated lifetime mortgage adviser will check that you're eligible for equity release and guide you through your options.

They can explain everything you need to know including any terms that you don't understand. They'll also check you meet the basic criteria for a lifetime mortgage and they'll know what questions to ask to help you decide if equity release is right for your financial situation and future plans.

Once they have all the necessary information, they'll be able to recommend whether releasing equity from your home is the right option for you.

2. They can tell you about all the different offers out there (and save you money!)

Independent financial advisers give what's called 'whole-of-market' lifetime mortgage advice, which saves you time and money.

This means the adviser researches all the equity release products that are currently available, to recommend one that's best value and most suited to your needs.

They'll compare different products by looking at things like how competitive the interest rates are and what charges you'll be asked to pay. They can also filter out any products that don't have the right features for you.

3. They can make sure you never have to pay back more than your home is worth

All lenders that are approved by the Equity Release Council offer what's called a 'no negative-equity guarantee', which means you can't owe more than your home is worth.

A lifetime mortgage adviser will check if a lender is approved so you can make sure that the plan you take out won't leave you with debt that's more than the value of your property.

As long as you meet the terms and conditions of your lifetime mortgage, you’ll therefore never have to pay back more than the amount you'll get when your home is eventually sold.

4. They can protect your family’s inheritance

If you decide to release equity from your home, your family will need to pay this back when they sell your house after you die, meaning they have less money to inherit.

A specialist adviser will take the time to explain how you can reduce the impact this has on the amount they inherit.

For example, some lifetime mortgage plans come with inheritance protection, which lets you separate a portion of your home's future value to guarantee your loved ones inherit at least this portion.

5. They can tell you if a lifetime mortgage isn't right for you

A specialist adviser will look at your current and future needs, financial circumstances, family situation, life plans and any concerns you may have before recommending that you release equity.

They might suggest that downsizing, withdrawing from your savings and investments, remortgaging your property or getting financial help from your family are better options for you.

This is because using a portion of your home wealth may reduce the value of your estate and could affect what means-tested benefits you can apply for.

Find out how much equity you could release from your home with our equity release calculator.

Is equity release for me?

Equity release is a big decision, and a big financial commitment. The money you release from your home with a lifetime mortgage can affect your entitlement to means-tested state benefits. A lifetime mortgage will also reduce the amount of inheritance you'll leave behind.

Our qualified, experienced advisers at OneFamily Advice offer whole-of-market lifetime mortgage advice. They will ensure that you clearly understand the implications of equity release, and will take the time to understand your individual circumstances before making their recommendations. They don't work on commission, so they only have your best interests at heart.

You can have a free, no obligation chat to find out whether equity release could be the right option for you. Then, if you decide to proceed, we charge a single advice fee of £950 on completion - no matter the size of your loan.

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What is equity release and how does it work?

Equity release can help you turn your property into valuable retirement income.

How long does equity release take?

A lifetime mortgage application usually takes between 5 and 8 weeks in total.

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