UK homeowners worry they won’t be able to afford their retirement without leaving their home

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Nearly four in ten homeowners (39%) think that unlocking housing wealth will be crucial to fund their retirement. Of those, almost a quarter (24%) are relying on their house because they don’t expect to have any private pension savings whatsoever, according to new research[1] from workplace pension provider NOW: Pensions.

This research comes in light of Government’s Housing White Paper, which sets out plans to tackle the UK’s housing shortage but fails to consider the issue of retired people looking to downsize. NOW: Pensions found that when looking to supplement their retirement income, around two-thirds (63%) of homeowners favour moving to a smaller property or cheaper area, over remortgaging or taking in a lodger.

Adrian Boulding, Director of Policy, NOW: Pensions said “Much of the long-awaited report addresses the issue from the point of view of young, working families, while largely ignoring the additional housing stock coming from retired people downsizing and selling their properties on to the next generation. What needs to be built, and which the report failed to address, is appropriate homes for the retired community”.

The research also found that over 1.8million UK homeowners who currently have a mortgage on their home, say they don’t expect to have paid off their mortgage when they do come to retire.

And 61% of Baby Boomers[2] that own their own home say they wish to downsize their property or move to a cheaper area as the favoured method to supplement their lack of pension savings when they retire.

Boulding continued: “Over the next ten years, we estimate that 7.7million[3] people will retire. Whilst it’s clear from our research that many UK homeowners remain optimistic that they can fill their income gap by trading down to a smaller house, they need to be cautious, as it’s a well-known fact that there is shortage of affordable and suitable homes that older people want to live in.

“We believe that workers should budget more than monthly minimum contributions into their workplace pensions savings, the earlier the better, to ensure they do not fall short of their own expectations when they come to retire in later life”.

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For further information:

Cheriton Lee
NOW: Pensions
Tel: 0203 826 1464

Lauren Roberts
NOW: Pensions
Tel: 0207 566 9760

NOW: Pensions @nowpensions

NOW: Pensions is one of the UK’s largest workplace pension providers with over a million members and tens of thousands of employers from a wide range of sectors. A subsidiary of one of Europe’s largest pension funds, Danish pension scheme ATP, NOW: Pensions entered the UK market in 2011 with a simple and cost effective workplace pension designed specifically with the auto enrolment market in mind.

NOW: Pensions was one of the first providers to achieve independent assurance of scheme quality in accordance with the master trust assurance framework (AAF02/07) introduced by The Pensions Regulator in conjunction with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).

Notes to editors

[1] Research conducted by Opinium online between 13 December 2016 and 16 December 2016 with 2,000 UK   respondents aged 18 and over;

[2] Baby Boomers defined as those aged between 50-69

[3] NOW: Pensions calculation based on ONS Population Data

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NOW: Pensions has a good technical infrastructure combined with a pension product suitable for our team. We couldn’t be happier with NOW: Pensions.
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