The nation’s favourite financial guru said that the easiest and cheapest way for pensioners to free up money was often to move to a smaller house.
Speaking on This Morning, Martin Lewis was responding to a caller, named Dee, who asked: “How can elderly people who have houses that are mortgage free release some of this equity to spend on themselves instead of struggling in later years?”
Martin said that he gets asked this question a lot and, although there are a number of options available, downsizing is one way that older people can keep more of their hard earned cash.
Martin said: “I’d always start by saying look to see if you can downsize.
“That’s the easy and cheap way for many people.
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“These are products specifically designed for getting equity out of your house.
“I’ve never been the biggest fan and I’m still not, although they have got a lot cheaper.”
Martin explained that doing it this way would be more expensive than downsizing.
He added: “You will be diminishing the value of your estate but still, if you need the money, go and do it.”
Martin continued: “This is all really complicated and easy to get wrong.
“If you’re doing an actual equity release, and the retirement mortgages aren’t those, you want to go to the Equity Release Council.
“I would also suggest you go and talk to an Independent Financial Adviser first who is qualified in equity release and they will go through all the options.
“If you get this wrong it is very expensive and you’ll be getting it wrong year after year.
“So this is one of those areas where I strongly recommend people get independent advice.”
This Morning airs weekdays on ITV from 10am. The Martin Lewis Money Show: Live continues tonight on ITV from 8.30pm.