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How much equity can I release?

If you’re 55 and over and own your own property, it might hold the key to a happier and more comfortable retirement. Find out how much equity you could release.

Make the most of your biggest asset

Many of us spend our working lives paying into our home – so wouldn’t it be great if we could make it work harder for us in our later years? Well, if you’re 55 and over and own your own property, it might just hold the key to a happier and more comfortable retirement. There could be a sizeable cash sum tied up in there, ready and waiting to be released…

Video transcript
How much equity could you release?

Have you ever considered how much equity you could release from your home?

Well let’s start by looking at the rise of house prices over the years, with the help of the information from the Government House Price Index.

In 1998, the average house in the UK cost £72,469. Twenty years later it’s now £226,756. So you can see that house prices have more than tripled in the last twenty years.

Now if you wanted to release some of the equity tied up in your home and it was worth this average here. If you were 65 years old, you could release up to 37.5% of its value. And that is the equivalent of £85,034.

But let’s say your outstanding mortgage is £30,00. So first of all you need to pay that off. So that’s a subtraction of £30,000.

And that would give you a potential of £55,034. To spend however you want. Such as on home improvements or helping out your family.

Or, say you’re 75 years old and your house is worth £400,000 and you’re mortgage free. In that case you could release up to 48% of the value of your home. And that is the equivalent of £192,000.

But you decide you only want to release half of that amount. So you decide to take out £96,000.

So you can see that the maximum amount you could release depends on your age and the value of your property, but you decide how much of that you want to release.

Just keep in mind the amount of equity you release plus the interest accrued over the years will be repaid from the sale of your house when you pass away or move into care.

Now, try the free Sunlife equity release calculator to see how much money you could unlock.

How can I release money from my house?

If you’ve been wondering how to turn your bricks and mortar into cash for your retirement, perhaps you’ve thought about upping sticks and moving to a smaller property (downsizing). But what if you don’t want to give up the home you love to get the retirement you deserve?

For those longing to carry on living in the home they love (and avoid paying expensive stamp duty fees), there’s another way. You could choose to unlock a cash sum through equity release instead – which will give you a tax-free lump sum or smaller cash injections to top up your income. Read more about what equity release is.

You won’t have to fork out for monthly repayments (although you may have the option to do so if you wish). The loan plus interest will simply be repaid when your sell your home. That’s usually when you pass away or move into long-term residential care.

It’s perfectly safe, and there’s no need to worry about going into negative equity (that’s one of the common equity release myths). Unlike with downsizing, you’ll be able to remain in your current home for as long as you like. And there isn’t a removal van in sight.

piles of coins sitting on a spreadsheet next to a calculator

So, how much equity can I release?

By now, you’re probably wondering ‘how much can I release from my home’? Usually, you can release between 20% and 50% of the equity (or value) in your home – but it’s different for everyone.

There are two main things that providers look at when working out what your figure will be:

  • How much your property is worth – your equity release provider will send a surveyor over to give you a professional valuation.
  • How long you’re likely to live after taking out your plan – this is based on your age (and that of your spouse if it’s a joint application) and your health. Some providers could offer you a bigger sum if you have (or have had) a medical condition, or if you smoke.

FREE equity release calculator

Forget about tricky calculations. We’ve made it quick and easy to see how much cash you could access – with our equity release calculator. Just pop a few details into our equity release calculator online, it’ll do the sums for you, and give you an estimate in seconds. That’s all there is to it.

In the meantime, a quick look at the table below will give you a rough idea of how much cash you could be sitting on…

Your ageYour home’s value
  £150,000£200,000£250,000£300,000£350,000£400,000
55 £38,250 £51,000 £63,750 £76,500 £89,250 £102,000
60 £48,750 £65,000 £81,250 £97,500 £113,750 £130,000
65 £56,250 £75,000 £93,750 £112,500 £131,250 £150,000
70 £63,750 £85,000 £106,250 £127,500 £148,750 £170,000
75 £72,000 £96,000 £120,000 £144,000 £168,000 £192,000
80 £78,000 £104,000 £130,000 £156,000 £182,000 £208,000
85+ £81,000 £108,000 £135,000 £162,000 £189,000 £216,000
90 £82,500 £110,000 £137,500 £165,000 £192,500 £220,000

*These figures are for illustration purposes only and are based on a lifetime mortgage. It is only an indication and isn't guaranteed. You should seek a personalised illustration and ask for more information. All figures are correct as of January 2018.

small blue wooden house sitting on bank notes next to a key

It’s somewhere to live AND a source of cash

Once you’ve released the cash from your home, it’s up to you how you spend it – whether it’s to boost your pension, pay for the home improvements you’ve dreamed of, or see your loved ones enjoy their inheritance during your lifetime. It could be worth having a little think about when you have some spare time – and feel free to keep track of your wish list using our Dream Shopping Basket tool.

Remember, taking out equity release is a big decision – so consider the pros and cons first. Make sure you consider your alternative options and speak to a professional financial adviser. You’ll also want to talk to your family, as it will reduce the inheritance you can leave. Have a read through our handy equity release guide to explore the details.

Whenever you’re ready, we’re here for you

For more information and to check your eligibility, call The SunLife Over 55 Equity Release Service today on 0800 633 5566 or request a call back.

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 is not authorised or regulated for this activity by the Financial Conduct Authority or the Prudential Regulation Authority but is a member of the National Association of Funeral Directors.

Who provides the Funeral Plans?

The funeral services are arranged and provided by Dignity Funerals Ltd which is not authorised or regulated for this activity by the Financial Conduct Authority or the Prudential Regulation Authority but is a member of the National Association of Funeral Directors.

The life insurance policy that pays for your funeral will be provided by Phoenix Life Limited, trading as SunLife.

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.