Simon Thompson (pictured) is chief executive of Key Group
The later life lending market has experienced huge growth in the past decade.
The factors driving the market are well-known – we’re all living longer and expect to maintain the standard of living we’ve been used to during our working life.
The cost of care, home renovations, debts, financial support given to loved ones, not to mention a well-deserved holiday start to mount up in retirement, often leaving pensioners feeling financially backed into a corner.
As we face new social and economic realities, there is an increasing need for advisers to support people in looking at new ways to fund successful retirements and unlocking property wealth is a trusted and reliable way to achieve this goal.
The Equity Release Council’s recent report – sponsored by Key – highlighted that over half of homeowners aged 45-plus now see property wealth as part of their later life financial plans.
More2life’s CEBR research has highlighted that the later life lending market is set to almost double over the next decade. It’s an exciting time, but also a crucial one if existing providers are to continue to serve customers well.
Consequently, it’s more important than ever for the later life lending sector to evolve and innovate – tailoring the offering not only to meet customers’ increasingly complex needs but also to support organisations and partners who want to unlock the potential in this sector.
That is what has driven the recent re-brand at Key Group, we’re focused not only growing our own business and ensure that customers receive the support they need but helping other organisations to enter and grow their businesses in this sector.
To build a prosperous later life lending sector for all, we believe that the key areas of future focus should be distilled into these ambitions:
- Work to equip more advisers to deliver good quality later life lending advice;
- Innovate to build smarter later life lending products and services to enhance the range of retirement financial solutions to meet customer needs;
- Increase the role of technology in the sector to improve customer experiences and improve efficiency; and
- Make expert financial advice accessible for all people on the retirement journey
Ultimately, it’s about putting customers at the heart of what you do and working to help them achieve their aspirations.
A cohesive approach is necessary. Lenders, advisers and support services must all support each other – and if you can seamlessly combine all three – there’s no limit to what can be achieved.