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What is the Equity Release application process?

An Equity Release mortgage can enable you to make repairs to the house, pay down debts or simply provide you with more freedom and a better standard of life in your later years.

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An adviser will be with you every step of the way

Going for Equity Release on your property is a big decision. Our advisors are able to take the stress out of the process and make everything as straightforward and easy to understand as possible.

Our aim is to find a solution that works for you now and suits your needs for the coming years. We’ll make sure we avoid confusing jargon, and will never resort to pushy sales tactics. We are dedicated professionals, giving you the best advice we can and leaving the decision in your hands.

With our help, you’ll find a scheme that works for you. Here’s how the Equity Release process will work from the moment you pick up the phone:

Step 1

The Initial Conversation

It’s all about listening. When you phone us, you get through to an expert in Equity Release who also happens to be a real person. No call centres, automated messages or sales teams.

Our advisers are experienced, mature people who want to provide a first-class service that meets your needs. The first thing we’ll do is find out more about your situation and how we can help. Then we’ll ask you for a little more information about your age, health, lifestyle as well as your house, income and what other loans or schemes you might already have in place.

Based on this, we will be able to make some initial suggestions, and possibly give a rough estimate of the amount you might be able to release. We will also answer any questions you might have, and deal with any concerns so that we can jointly establish that Equity Release is the right choice for you.

If you then need to talk it over further with a partner or your family, no problem. We’ll arrange a time to phone you back.

At this point, you might also want to talk to a solicitor. We regularly work with friendly, competent legal advisers with plenty of Equity Release experience, and would be happy to recommend someone you can trust.

If everyone feels positive, then we can take it to the next stage.

Step 2

Going Over All The Details

It’s important that we get to know you as well as possible, in order to come up with an Equity Release scheme you will be comfortable with and that best suits your needs. We usually have two meetings or appointments with you at this stage – the first to get to know you, and the second to recommend the best options.

A face-to-face meeting is ideal for both of us. We’ll be able to see how you feel about Equity Release and make sure you understand all the aspects, while you’ll see how we are to work with and get key information from the horse’s mouth.

We’ll go over all the information at your own pace, and answer questions as we go. You’re welcome to visit our office, or we can come to your home, whichever suits you best. If distance is a problem, then we’re happy to do this via Skype or over the phone. We’ve worked with people throughout the UK, and understand that a face-to-face meeting isn’t always possible.

This appointment is all about getting to know you inside out and understanding the details. We’ll go over your current income (including state benefits) and investments, as well as details of any debts or outstanding mortgage. We’ll also discuss the state of your health and any past or existing medical conditions.

We’ll work through your immediate needs and future plans. It’s important to think about budgeting for what you will need to spend and when, so you don’t apply for the loan on guesswork. This will also help to determine whether a lump sum or drawdown Equity Release plan will work best for you.

We want to work with you to get the result you want in the most efficient way possible, so none of your money is wasted. There are many Equity Release products on the market, and we need to chose the one with the right interest rate and fees, so you don’t over-pay.

After this meeting, we’ll go away, do our research and work out which options would be best for you. In our second meeting, we’ll come back with our recommendations and explain these to you in detail. By the end of that meeting, we will have worked out a plan that you are totally happy with.

If you would like family members to be at the meetings, this is absolutely fine. It’s better for everyone’s peace of mind if they also get to know us, understand why we are presenting certain options and trust our advice. And if they do have any questions themselves, we’ll have the opportunity to put their minds at rest.

Remember – we don’t charge for this consultation. If you decide not to go ahead with Equity Release, then you won’t owe us a penny.

Step 3

Your Application and Home Valuation

Following the second meeting, when you have chosen your Equity Release scheme, we’ll give you a personal suitability report that sets out what we recommend for your current situation. You’ll also get a full personalised illustration of your plan, explaining all the benefits and risks of the scheme, and including every possible detail of the costs and schedules.

If you are happy with our recommendations and want to proceed, then we’ll complete the Equity Release application and lodge it with the provider.

Once they have received it, the lender will make an assessment, take credit references and arrange for a home valuation. This could be a full valuation or a quick inspection by a surveyor.

Step 4

Confirming the Offer

If the lender is satisfied with the application and property evaluation, they will send their loan offer to you, your solicitor and your adviser.

If everything is as you want it to be, your solicitor will finalise the legal documents to complete the Equity Release process, and you will soon be getting your money.

Step 5

Getting Your Money

Once the documents are finalised and submitted, the lender will complete their instructions and your tax-free funds will be released to you via your solicitor.

This is the stage where the solicitor’s fee and our service fee will be deducted. Many brokers charge a percentage of your loan amount, but we keep things simple and charge a set, flat fee, so you always know where you stand. Again, this is only payable when your money is transferred to you, so if you don’t go ahead with Equity Release, you don’t owe us anything.

How long does the Equity Release process take?

The time from your application being accepted by the lender to when the money arrives in your account is usually around 6 weeks. This might vary according to how long your solicitor takes to process the legal work, but we all do our best to keep any delays to a minimum.

Equity Release Calculator

Calculation results should not be considered as a quote. Make sure you read the separate Key Facts Illustration (KFI) or European Standard Information Sheet (ESIS) before making a decision

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