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Equity Release

Free the cash tied up in your home

Find out more on Equity Release

How Equity Release can fit your needs

Release money

from the value of your home

Carry on living

in your own home for the rest of your life

Receive the money

as and when you need it

You will never

owe more than the value of your home

several people sat around a dining table eating and drinking wine

What is Equity Release?

  • A way to access some of the equity tied up in your home without having to move out
  • Exclusively for homeowners aged 55 and over ideally with little or no mortgage
  • Choice of two equity release schemes – Lifetime Mortgage or Home Reversion Plan - to suit you and your financial plans for the future
  • The amount available will depend on your age, your health, your home’s value and the equity release scheme you choose
  • The money can be taken as a lump sum, or in smaller amounts as and when needed
  • Equity release schemes are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
  • Equity Release is not always the right option. There may be other routes available to obtain a similar amount of money. You should seek professional advice before deciding whether an equity release scheme is right for you
  • Equity release may affect your entitlement to state benefits due to the increase in your capital and income
  • You may want to consider the impact on your estate, as your loved ones will not inherit your home when you die
  • You must maintain your home to a decent standard. If not, your equity release provider is entitled to arrange repairs that you would have to pay for
  • Arrangement and advice fees may be payable.

Questions?  Read our FAQs

Equity release schemes

Lifetime mortgage

  • Available to UK residents aged 55+
  • You take out a loan secured on the value of your home and accrue interest on the loan which is added to the loan amount
  • You retain ownership of your property
  • The money is paid to you as a one off tax-free lump sum or drawn down in smaller amounts over a period of time
  • You don’t have to make regular repayments, as the loan plus interest is only repaid when your property is sold
  • When the property is sold, the amount owed including interest, will be paid to the provider and any surplus, if there is any, will go to you or your estate

Bear in mind…

  • If you choose to repay the loan, early repayment charges may apply
  • You can’t be certain of any money going to your estate after the loan has been repaid, unless your mortgage lets you fix a percentage of the value as inheritance
  • Depending on how much you borrow and how long you live, you could be left with little or no equity in your home

Home Reversion Plan

  • Available to UK residents aged 65 and over
  • Allows you to access all or part of the value of your property while retaining the right to remain in your property, rent free, for the rest of your life
  • You sell all or part of your house in exchange for a cash lump sum taking into account your age and your health
  • There is no day-to-day interference and no restrictions on treating the house exactly as before; as a private home to live in freely
  • The percentage you retain in your property will always remain the same regardless of the change in property values, unless you decide to take further cash releases
  • Your share can be left as an inheritance, although the property itself can’t be passed on.

Bear in mind…

  • You will no longer own all of your home
  • The share of your property you sell, is sold for considerably less than the market value
  • Your estate will not benefit from any increase in house prices on the share of the property you sell.

Frequently asked questions

What is equity in my home?

The ‘equity’ in your home is the market value of your home, minus any mortgage or debt you have against the property.

How much equity can I release?

This will depend on the value of your home and your age. It’s likely that the older you are, the more equity you can release.

Can I still have a mortgage on my property?

You usually must be mortgage free, however if you have a small mortgage, some equity release schemes allow you to pay off your mortgage with part of the money you release.

Does it matter what kind of property I have?

It must be built out of bricks and mortar. You must also own a freehold property or one with a long lease.

Can I still move home?

Yes, under most schemes you can, however fees may apply.

What if I die but my partner is still alive?

If you have a partner the equity release scheme should be in both names so your partner can continue to live in the home under the same arrangements.

What happens if my partner or I need long term care?

If you both permanently move into a care home, the scheme will usually end and the property will be sold. If just one of you moved to a care home, or if care was provided at home, your equity release scheme will usually continue as is.

Can I ever owe more than the property is worth?

Lifetime mortgages offer a ‘no negative equity guarantee’ safeguard upheld by Equity Release Council members, which ensures you will never have to repay more than the value of your property.

Here's the information that you need to know about who we are and the other companies that we work with in order to provide our products and services.

Who are SunLife? 

Phoenix Life Limited trades as SunLife and is the provider of the Guaranteed Over 50 Plan, SunLife Insurance and the life insurance policy payment option for Funeral Plans. Phoenix Life Limited’s registered office is at 1 Wythall Green Way, Wythall, Birmingham, B47 6WG (registered in England, no. 1016269). Phoenix Life Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority and is entered on the Financial Services Register (registration no. 110418). As part of SunLife’s commitment to quality service and security, telephone calls may be recorded.

SunLife Limited distributes financial products and services and is a company limited by shares, registered office: 1 Wythall Green Way, Wythall, Birmingham, B47 6WG (registered in England, no. 05460862). SunLife Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is entered on the Financial Services Register (registration no. 769427).

You can contact us by post at SunLife, PO Box 1395, Peterborough, PE2 2TR or by phone on 0800 008 6060.

If you choose to add Funeral Benefit Option to your Guaranteed Over 50 Plan the funeral services are arranged and provided by Dignity Funerals Limited. Dignity Funerals Limited is a company registered in England and Wales No. 00041598. VAT registered No. 486 6081 14. 4 King Edwards Court, King Edwards Square, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, B73 6AP. Telephone No. 0121 354 1557. Fax No. 0121 355 808. Part of Dignity plc. A British Company. Dignity are not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority or the Prudential Regulation Authority but are registered providers with the Funeral Planning Authority.

Who provides the Funeral Plans?

The funeral services are arranged by a funeral director selected by Golden Charter Ltd. Golden Charter Ltd are not required to be authorised or regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority or the Prudential Regulation Authority in relation to funeral plans but are registered providers with the Funeral Planning Authority.

If you choose to pay for your funeral in one go, with a single payment, you will have a contract with Golden Charter. The funeral services will be arranged by a funeral director selected by Golden Charter Ltd.

If you choose to pay for your funeral with a life insurance policy, the policy will be provided by AXA Wealth Ltd, trading as SunLife. The funeral services will be arranged by a funeral director selected by Golden Charter Ltd.

Who provides My Smarter (ISA)?

My Smarter (ISA) is provided by Scottish Friendly Asset Managers Limited. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Details can be found on the Financial Services register, registration No. 188832. Member of The Investment Association. Registered Office: Scottish Friendly House, 16 Blythswood Square, Glasgow G2 4HJ.

Who provides the Will writing services?

Hugh James is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA Number:303202).

The information contained on this website is based on Hugh James' understanding of the law of intestacy in England and Wales only as at April 2014. The law in Scotland and Northern Ireland is significantly different. This is for information purposes and is not intended to be legal advice.

Who provides Family Life Insurance?

SunLife Family Life Insurance is provided by Scottish Friendly Assurance Society Limited which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Details can be found on the Financial Services register (registration number 110002). Registered Office: Scottish Friendly House, 16 Blythswood Square, Glasgow G2 4HJ. 

Who provides SunLife Pet Insurance

SunLife Pet Insurance is arranged and administered by BDML Connect Limited. BDML Connect Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (No. 309140). Registered in England and Wales Number 02785540. Registered Office: 45 Westerham Road, Bessels Green, Sevenoaks, Kent, TN13 2QB.

Who provides SunLife Home Insurance

SunLife Home Insurance is arranged and administered by BISL Limited and underwritten by a panel of insurers. BISL Limited are an intermediary authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England no. 03231094. Registered office Pegasus House, Bakewell Road, Orton Southgate, Peterborough PE2 6YS.

Who provides SunLife Car Insurance

SunLife Car Insurance is arranged and administered by BISL Limited and underwritten by a panel of insurers. BISL Limited are an intermediary authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England no. 03231094. Registered office Pegasus House, Bakewell Road, Orton Southgate, Peterborough PE2 6YS.