Equity release, downsizing and other options: what are the features and benefits?
Last updated 1st August 2023 by the SunLife Content Team
6 min read
When people retire, they tend to face a loss in income. This can mean a drop in the standard of life they’re used to. As a result, people are looking for ways to support themselves financially in later years – such as equity release or downsizing.
There are several options available, and it’s important to consider the financial, practical and emotional implications. Here we briefly look at equity release and downsizing, plus some of the other ways you could access extra cash in your retirement:
This is when you sell your home to buy a cheaper property. It may be smaller or in a lower priced area. Once you’ve sold it and all costs have been paid, you keep the money left over.
This is a financial arrangement that can give you a tax-free lump sum, or smaller instalments, while still living in the comfort of your current home. The equity release provider is repaid when your home is sold. This is normally when you die or move out permanently into long-term care.
There’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to finances in later life. Here’s a quick look at other ways you may be able to access extra cash:
Read more about alternatives to equity release. Remember, it’s best to ask a qualified financial adviser to help you decide what’s the right option for you.
Always seek advice
Whether you choose to downsize, release equity or access cash another way, it's a big decision. It will need careful consideration and will likely have an impact on your family, so it’s important to include them in your plans too.
As with any major financial decision, before doing anything you must speak to a qualified specialist who will take you through all the options available to you in detail. If you’d like to find out more, we have a useful equity release guide explaining how it works and the different plans available.