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Unlock housing wealth for a happy retirement

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07/12/2015
Some of the most popular ways to spend your retirement are unaffordable on a State Pension alone
Unlock housing wealth for a happy retirement

There are plenty of ways to spend a happy retirement – but some are more pricey than others.

According to research from Age Partnership some of the most popular activities in retirement are not affordable to those without additional funds on top of the State Pension.

Top of the list is taking holidays, the most popular way for over-55s to boost their happiness, but the fourth least affordable option. On average you would need to put aside over a seventh (15.5%) of your maximum new State Pension in order to save for an annual getaway.

Counting the cost

The three most affordable options are eating out once a month, going on an organised day trip once a month and being in a club – all costing less than 5% of the maximum new State Pension.

By comparison, the three least affordable lifestyle changes are getting a conservatory, buying a new car and buying a campervan – all of which are impossible to afford on the maximum new State Pension alone.

Simon Chalk, equity release expert at Age Partnership, said: “Counter to the old adage, many over-55s feel that money can buy happiness, at least to a certain extent. However, many cash-strapped citizens are only making ends meet, and are unable to afford the additions to their lifestyle that would inspire this positivity.

“Housing wealth is one way that over-55s can boost their pension income – and enjoy themselves. Many people in this age group own their own homes and have seen their property wealth rise significantly over recent years, as house prices have grown. Property wealth is often their largest asset as a result. Equity release provides a means for over-55s to access this wealth, with popular lifetime mortgage drawdown plans allowing customers to boost their income.”

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