At the PFS annual conference at the ICC Birmingham today they explained why the market is in a good place, detailing innovation and pension reforms.
Nigel Waterson, chairman of the Equity Release Council, said: “More people going into retirement are looking for flexible products; flexible solutions to their problems. We are going through something of a boom at the moment.”
And Andrea Rozario, chair of Bower Retirement Services, added: “If you are advising clients then you don’t have a choice – you should be getting involved in this. This is probably one of the most exciting areas of financial services to get into.
“These products make a dramatic difference in the quality of a client’s life – and you can see that first hand.”
Changes to pension rules will also help the market go from strength to strength.
Managing director of Pure Retirement Paul Carter told delegates: “Pension reforms will absolutely accelerate this market.
“The changes in this market are absolutely significant, though it will only accelerate if we innovate our products. It is modern; it is changing.”
Carter also stressed that equity release policies should be seen as ‘retirement planning tools’ rather than ‘last resort’ products, adding “this is an at retirement tool that should be used whole heartedly throughout their retirement”.
Age Partnership technical manager – equity release’ Simon Chalk went on to tell delegates that they need to ask homebuyers the right questions when moving in so they can go back and offer equity release down the line, such as ‘what will you realistically do if your partner dies?’
And when interviewing potential customers Rozario added: “You need to make sure you detail alternatives.
“Try and speak to them both with and without their families being present.”