There was a 41% increase in the number of people taking out equity release between July and September compared to the previous three months, a report released by the Equity Release Council has revealed.
According to the report, between July and September (Q3 2020), 10,351 new equity release plans were agreed, which is up from 7,341 agreed between April and June (Q2 2020), but 9% lower than the same period the previous year when 11,419 equity release plans were agreed.
In addition to the increase in new equity release agreements, Q3 2020 also saw an increase in customers taking extra drawdowns from their agreed plans compared to Q2 2020. The report found that during Q3 2020, 6,697 customers took equity release drawdown, which is a 19% increase compared to Q2 2020, when 5,608 customers took drawdown. However, again, Q3 2020 saw a year-on-year decrease, with 9,605 customers taking equity release drawdown during Q3 2019.
One reason for the increase in equity release activity during Q3 2020 compared to Q2 2020 is the impact the spring lockdown had on the market. During the lockdown, many potential customers were unable to get equity release due to property valuations being unable to take place. David Burrowes, chairman of the Equity Release Council, said: “These figures show a steady return to something closer to normal activity over the summer, after the market weathered the initial impact of Covid-19. With the country experiencing a break from lockdown, the pick-up was helped by a mix of new enquiries and delayed cases from earlier in the year.”