The number of equity contracts entered dropped to 18,420 in the first half of this year, a 15% fall on the same period in 2019. Figures from the Equity Release Council show that, among customers who already had equity release plans in place, fewer sought fresh cash advances, and withdrawals were smaller than in the previous six months. David Burrowes, the council’s chairman, said that there were "initial signs of a recovery in June." Equity release allows customers to unlock part of the value of their home and receive cash, either in a lump sum or in several smaller amounts, on which they pay interest. The sector has attracted criticism as compounding interest can increase customers' debts and wipe out inheritances.
The Daily Telegraph (21/09/2020)