A new survey produced by Safe Home Income Plans (SHIP) has identified a continuing demand for greater information from the Government about the relationship betweenand state benefits.
According to SHIP’s survey, 91% of advisors felt there was a lack of clear and consistent information, which was an obvious obstacle to these advisors providing the right level of advice about equity release and state benefits. This led Andrea Rozario, director general of SHIP to say:
“These findings highlight how important it is that advisers have access to clear and consistent information, so that they are fully equipped to help their clients to navigate the benefits system, when choosing to release the equity in their home.”
“Urge the Government to listen to advisers”
The lack of clear advice about this relationship between equity release and state benefits has led to 23% of advisors referring their clients to other sources of information in a bid to help them get the best guidance.
Getting the right information, when considering an equity release scheme, is vitally important to homeowners. Equity release has the potential to unlock a tax-free lump sum from the value of a property to supplement income in retirement. Ms Rozario concluded by saying:
“At this time of review I would urge the Government to take stock and listen to advisers, simplify the current system through the introduction of clear guidelines, and look for better ways of communicating the information they do provide. Financial advisers can help to ease the process of planning for retirement, but in order to do so they must feel as though they have the support of the Government and their needs are being recognised.”