arrowright roundtick plus plus house 66 . 7 % cornercurve

Equity release lenders and providers

Who are the major lenders and providers of equity release and what do they offer

Get Started

No impact to credit score

Feefo logo

By Pete Mugleston  | Mortgage Advisor Pete has been a mortgage advisor for over 10 years, and is regularly cited in both trade and national press.

Updated: 26th June 2019* | Published: 27th February 2019

Which are the best equity release companies?

We get lots of enquiries asking who are the best equity release companies to use if you’re considering this form of lending. It can be quite difficult to define exactly what ‘best’ looks like as the type of equity release solution that suits one person may differ from another.

Whether it’s the amount you’re looking to borrow, flexible repayment options or simply the best interest rate on offer. The good news is there’s lots of terrific options available across a number of highly regarded equity release providers.

Once you’ve read through the information below, make an enquiry with us and we can ask an advisor we work with to get in touch and discuss, in more detail, what each equity release company has to offer.

In this article we will cover:

We’ll find the perfect mortgage broker for you - for free

Save time and money with an expert mortgage broker who specialises in cases like yours

  • We've helped over 82,000 get the right advice
  • Our form only takes a minute, then let us do the hard work
  • Save up to £400 per year with the right advice (source: FCA)
  • All the brokers we work with have whole of market access

Why choose equity release?

If you’re aged 55 or over, at or near retirement and find yourself fairly rich in property assets but lacking in actual cash in the bank, an equity release plan could provide an opportunity to turn this paper value into real money.

As property prices across the UK continue to grow, the equity release market has also seen a huge surge in popularity. At the midway point of 2018, 39,000 households have withdrawn £1.7 billion from the value within their properties.

The money you borrow from the equity in your main residence can be used for whatever you desire - home improvements, buying another property, settling outstanding debts or perhaps a dream holiday you’ve always promised yourselves.

How much can I borrow with equity release?

The main factors that determine what you can borrow for equity release are:

  • Your age
  • Your health
  • The value of your main UK residence

The older, and less healthy, you are the more you are able to borrow.

Your house will require an appropriate valuation as an equity release provider must deem a property sellable and adequate security for the mortgage.

As with affordability criteria, the range of loan to values (LTVs) will vary from lender to lender. Depending upon the factors outlined above, most equity release providers can offer a maximum loan to value of 50%, some can go as high as 55%.

Who are the main equity release companies?

The difficulty with equity release is knowing what you can borrow from which providers and how much it will cost. Many people can be put off by a lack of information and understanding of who the main equity release companies are.

Thankfully, as all equity release products are regulated, they cannot be taken out without the assistance of a qualified financial advisor. Prospective applicants should feel reassured that an advisor will be able to identify the right equity release company with the best solution for their needs.

As a summary, the table below provides an overview of some of the main equity release companies within the UK along with a general outline of their criteria (assume minimum age at outset is 55 unless stated otherwise in the table).

Equity Release Provider Product Criteria
Canada Life
  • These lifetime mortgages have early repayment charges that are fixed for the first 8 years, with no repayment charge after the 9th year.
  • Borrower can take advantage of our inheritance guarantee.
  • Cash reserve facility to able to withdraw more funds.
  • Free valuation, with no cap.
  • Fixed interest rate for life
Aviva Equity Release
  • No maximum age at outset
  • Loans available from £15,000
  • Property value must be at least £75,000
  • Partial repayments and draw-down facility available
  • Early repayment fees apply
More2life equity release
  • Maximum age at outset 84
  • Loans available from £10,000 - £460,000
  • Property value must be between £100,000 - £1,500,000
  • Partial repayments and draw-down facility available
  • Early repayment fees apply in 15 years
Legal and General equity release
  • Maximum age at outset 90
  • Loans available from £10,000
  • Property value must be at least £100,000
  • Partial repayments and draw-down facility available
  • Early repayment fees apply
LV (Liverpool Victoria) Equity Release
  • Minimum age at outset - 60
  • Maximum age at outset - 95
  • Loans available from £10,000
  • Property value must be at least £70,000
  • Partial repayments and draw-down facility available
  • Early repayment fees apply
Pure Retirement
  • Minimum age 60
  • Interest rate is fixed for life
  • The plan is portable so you can move house if you want too
Just
  • Youngest applicant must be aged 55 or over if borrowing jointly
  • Cash facility to release additional amounts in the future
  • Flexible repayment scheme
Hodge Lifetime Equity Release
  • Minimum age at outset - 60
  • Maximum age at outset - 85
  • Loans available from £20,000 - £500,000
  • Property value must be between £100,000 - £1,000,000
  • Partial repayments and draw-down facility available
  • Early repayment fees apply in first 5 years
One Family Equity Release
  • Maximum age at outset - 100
  • Loans available from £10,000 - £750,000
  • Property value must be at least £70,000
  • Partial repayments and draw-down facility available
  • Early repayment fees apply in first 10 years

***Information correct as of time of writing 22/02/2019. Likewise, this is not an exhaustive list of equity release providers. For up to date and comprehensive info speak to one of the equity release experts we work with.***

As stated above, it’s very important that you seek the advice of an independent advisor if you want to move forward with an equity release mortgage. The expert advisors we work with also work very closely with a lot of equity release companies.

If you get in touch we can arrange for an expert to contact you directly and find the best deal that suits your own personal circumstances.

Do banks offer their own equity release mortgages?

Most of the main UK high street banks have offered, at one time or another, their own in-house equity release solutions to their customers. Lifetime mortgages became regulated in 2004 and home reversion plans in 2007.

However, currently, most major UK banks such as HSBC, Barclays, Lloyds, TSB and Natwest do not offer themselves as equity release lenders due, mainly, to issues with the product offering in the past and prioritising lending opportunities across different areas of the mortgage market (such as first-time buyers).

As with banks, most major high street building societies, with the exception of Nationwide Building Society,  don’t currently offer this type of lending to their customers either and haven’t done for quite a number of years as the 2008 credit crunch placed a significant amount of pressure on funding.

The current suite of equity release mortgages available in 2018 offer the most diverse range of features and options, coupled with competitive interest rates, the market has ever seen.

If you’re interested in releasing equity from your property and want to discuss this further, make an enquiry with us and we can arrange for an equity release specialist to get in touch.

What are the best interest rates available from equity release companies?

 Comparing interest rates for equity release mortgages can be quite tricky. The difficulty is that it really depends on what type of lending you’re looking for - lump sum or draw-down, both of which will impact upon the interest rate.

Other factors such as your age, health and the amount you’re looking to borrow could also affect the interest rate you are offered. The amount of interest you end up paying depends on how long you live and how much you originally borrow.

Amount borrowed Interest Rate Age at outset Age at death Term Interest Roll-up Total amount owed
£20,000 3.55% 58 94 36 £50,215 £70,215
£30,000 3.75% 63 83 20 £32,644 £62,644
£40,000 4.20% 77 84 7 £13,349 £53,349
£50,000 4.40% 80 86 6 £14,740 £64,740

The table above is for demonstrative purposes only and you should always consult your lender, financial expert or broker for the most up-to-date information to suit your circumstances.

It is up to date as of 22/02/2019.  Speak to one of the expert equity release advisors we work with to get accurate, up to date information.

The table above illustrates this point perfectly.

The first example has the lowest amount borrowed and the lowest interest rate, however, due to the applicant living until they were 94, the amount of interest is the highest.

Trying to work out how much interest we could eventually have to pay back on equity release is a fairly fruitless exercise because none of us know how long we’re going to live.

Most interest rates are fixed at the outset for equity release schemes, therefore, it is still in your best interests to look for the best rate you can.

At the time of writing interest rates amongst equity release lenders who are members of the Equity Release Council can typically range from 3.5% to 6%.

However, these rates are subject to change, therefore, if you get in touch with us we can ask an advisor we work with to speak to you and compare the best deals for equity release that are currently available.

Frequently asked questions

How do I know if I’m eligible for equity release?

 If you’re aged 55 or over, own your main residence in the UK and reside in the country for at least six months of the year then you are eligible for equity release. For joint applications, the age limit is based on the youngest applicant.

 Typically, there’s no maximum age at the end of the term as equity release plans remain open until you either die or move into a care home. However, some lenders apply a maximum age at outset of 85 although a few will go as high as 95 (as seen in the provider table above).

Could I ever end up owing back more than my house is worth with an equity release plan?

 No, as long as you choose a provider who is a member of the Equity Release Council (ERC). The ERC was set up to regulate a strict code of practice in order to protect the interests of consumers. One of the features that all ERC members must offer is a ‘no negative equity guarantee’.

This means that you, or your beneficiaries, will never have to pay back any more than the value of your property.

Many of the equity release companies named in the table above are members of the ERC and some provide a ‘no negative equity guarantee’ as standard on all of their products.

Can I make voluntary payments during the life of my equity release plan to reduce the burden on my beneficiaries when I die?

Yes, you can. Most equity release lenders now offer the flexibility of making voluntary repayments of both capital and interest of up to 10% per annum.

Most lenders will allow you to cease making payments if, at some point, they place a strain upon your finances.

Can an equity release scheme affect any means-tested benefits I may be claiming?

 Yes, possibly, as you will be increasing the amount you hold as cash within your bank account. It is important you consider how your benefits could be affected before proceeding.

Why you should speak to an expert equity release broker

 At Online Mortgage Advisor we can offer you a first-class service tailored to your own specific needs with access to the most experienced brokers available that:

  • Have whole of market access
  • Have excellent relationships with lenders
  • Are OMA accredited advisors
  • Have completed a 12 module LIBF accredited training course

All of the specialists we work with are members of the equity release council.

Speak to an equity release expert

If you have questions and want to speak to an expert for the right advice, call Online Mortgage Advisor today on 0800 304 7880 or make an enquiry here.

Then sit back and let us do all the hard work in finding the broker with the right expertise for your circumstances.  – We don’t charge a fee and there’s absolutely no obligation or marks on your credit rating.

Updated: 26th June 2019
OnlineMortgageAdvisor 2019 ©

FCA disclaimer

*Based on our research, the content contained in this article is accurate as of most recent time of writing. Lender criteria and policies change regularly so speak to one of the advisors we work with to confirm the most accurate up to date information. The info on the site is not tailored advice to each individual reader, and as such does not constitute financial advice. All advisors working with us are fully qualified to provide mortgage advice and work only for firms who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. They will offer any advice specific to you and your needs. Some types of buy to let mortgages are not regulated by the FCA. Think carefully before securing other debts against your home. As a mortgage is secured against your home, it may be repossessed if you do not keep up with repayments on your mortgage. Equity released from your home will also be secured against it.

Find out more about Equity Release Mortgages

Equity Release