Advise Your Equity Release Advisor

Contemplating equity release can be a little overwhelming. Many people recognise that equity release is heavily regulated and you should consult with a qualified equity release advisor in order to proceed. However, it is important that you recognise that it is a joint decision and you will need to consider your options carefully before making your final decision.

Your Advisor
Your advisor will base many of their recommendations on the information gathered in their factfind. However, this information will be based on the details which you have provided them. It is important to be honest with your advisor about your current financial situation and what the reasons for you requesting equity release actually are. This will allow your advisor to gather an accurate picture of your situation and assess the best possible product for your requirements.

Although you may have researched a number of products and decided that equity release is the solution for your requirements, there are a number of considerations which should be explored. Your advisor is obliged to establish whether there are any potential alternatives which would be better suited to your needs, so it is best to be prepared on the following issues:

• Is there an alternative way to raise an income such as taking on a lodger or renting out part of your home?
• Is there way to reduce your financial expenditure, for example through budgeting or reassessing your current energy packages, telephone services and insurances?
• Is there another way to source the funds required? For example, downsizing to another property, using existing savings, obtaining other forms of credit such as loans or credit cards, obtaining financial assistance from family members, applying for state assistance or benefits, applying for home improvement grants or schemes?

These answers to these issues may provide a feasible alternative to equity release, which may be more beneficial in the longer term. It is important to assess the validity of each of these issues to ensure that you are fully aware of the implications and limitations of equity release. Short term financial issues may be better solved with an alternative method. However, once you have ascertained that none of the above issues, could be an acceptable solution for your financial requirements, you can proceed with confidence.

Making an Informed Decision
Your equity release advisor will provide details on the products which they feel best suit your needs. This will include details of any charges and fees which may be applicable and any limitations or restrictions associated with the scheme. It is important to make an informed decision and not feel pressured into agreeing to something which may not be right for you. It is important to take the time to study the information and recommendations to make an informed decision which is right for you.