Canada Life Equity Release & Lifetime Mortgages Review 2022
Release the equity from your home as a cash sum or regular payments
- Release tax-free cash from your home
- Protect your families inheritance
- Use the money to purchase another house or pay off credit cards
- Live in and retain ownership of your home with a lifetime mortgage
Pre-Decision In Principle Application Form:
The broker will compare options from the following brands only: Aviva, Hodge Lifetime, Just (Just Retirement), Legal & General (L&G), LV (Liverpool Victoria), More2Life, OneFamily, Pure Retirement, Retirement Advantage.
Canada Life (Was Retirement Advantage) Equity Release Review
Before there was Retirement Advantage, the firm operated as MGM Advantage as an annuity provider, until 2014’s budget. That’s when the announcement came from the then Chancellor George Osborne who announced in the budget that savers would never be forced into buying an annuity again.
The retirement sector needed to innovate. In response, MGM Advantage rebranded to form Retirement Advantage. Part of the move into the retirement sector saw the firm buy the Stonehaven Equity Release brand, which gave it a firm footing going into the equity release market.
Retirement Advantage was later acquired by Canada Life in January of 2018. All Retirement Advantage Equity Release products are now offered through Canada Life.
It’s those lifetime mortgage products offered by Canada Life that are the focus of this review, as Canada Life is continuing to provide the same product line Retirement Advantage had, before the acquisition.
Canada Life are members of the Equity Release Council (ERC) so homeowners interested in any of the Canada Life equity release offers will still have the same high-level guarantees of other leading firms, namely the no negative equity guarantee.
In addition to being voluntary members of the ERC, The Canada Life Group (U.K.) Limited and subsidiaries (Stonehaven UK LTD and MGM Advantage LTD) are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority.
Canada Life has been involved in the UK finance sector since 1903. It’s only in 2018; the company expanded into the equity release market following the acquisition of Retirement Advantage.
Canada Life Equity Release Products
Four products complete the line-up of lifetime mortgages, providing a healthy range of options for homeowners nearing retirement and in retirement.
- Borrow from £10,000 to £1 million
- The minimum age is 55
- The minimum property valuation is £70,000
- Interest rates start at 4.02% with LTV ranges starting at 11% on the Lifestyle Lite plan for a sole applicant aged 55 years of age
- The upper age limit is 90 years old
- The amount you can borrow increases with age
- A cash reserve is available for those who wish to use drawdown. If drawdown is used, there is a minimum withdrawal amount of £2,000.
- There is an option to include an inheritance guarantee
- 8-year fixed early repayment charges
This plan is suited to High Net Worth clients with properties valued at £500,000.
- The minimum loan amount is £250,000
- A cash reserve facility is available to use drawdown instead of a one-off lump sum payment
- Age requirements are between the ages of 60 and 90 years old
- 10-year fixed early repayment fees
Interest Select Options
- Raise between £10,000 and £750,000
- Choose to pay between 50% interest up to 100% interest with the option to switch to interest roll up at any time. Should you choose to pay interest, it’s payable monthly, and you’ll only be able to miss three non-sequential payments per year. If more than three payments are missed, it will automatically revert onto interest roll up.
- Once the interest payments are agreed and set up, the amounts are fixed and can’t be changed. You can, however, choose to stop making interest payments at any time.
- Early repayment charges are fixed for eight years, then waived if repaid in the 9th year
- Downsizing protection is included if you choose to sell your home to move to a smaller house after five years
- On joint policies, there’s also an early repayment waiver if you decide to settle the loan within three years of a partner passing away or going into a long-term care home
- An inheritance guarantee can be included at no additional cost
Voluntary Select Options
The Voluntary Select plan works similar to the Interest Select option; only instead of repaying between 50% and 100% interest monthly, you’d be able to make voluntary payments as, when and if you choose, up to a maximum of 15% of the loan advance per the calendar year.
In addition to the plans outlined above, Canada Life also provides equity release on second homes that meet the eligibility criteria. The key difference on Second Home equity release plans are the payments are one-off and do not have the cash reserve facility.
Eligibility Criteria and the Fine Print for Canada Life Equity Release
- Open to homeowners aged 55 or 60 depending on the product you choose
- Upper age limit is 90 years old
- All plans have the option to use a cash reserve to take multiple withdrawals rather than a fixed lump sum one-off payment
- The lifetime mortgages can move with you to a new property, provided the new home meets the lending criteria
- The interest rate agreed at the outset of all plans remains in place for the life of the loan
- Future borrowing may be available; however, it is not guaranteed
- Not all products provide downsizing protection. If you’d be moving to a smaller property, speak to your financial advisor about the downsizing protection as that can avoid an early repayment charge. If not, early repayment fees will either be fixed at 8 years or 10 years depending on which plan you choose.
- On all equity release products, if you have a mortgage in place already, the funds released will need to be used to repay your existing mortgage
How Much You Could Borrow through Canada Life Equity Release?
The total amount you’ll be eligible to borrow is based on your age at the time of the application and the value of your home. You can use the Canada Life maximum loan calculator to get an idea of how much you can borrow.
As an illustrative example:
Based on a 58-year-old with a home valued at £180,000, a maximum loan of £25,200 could be available on the Lifestyle Lite plan at 4.02% monthly interest using interest roll up with no additional features. Should you want to include a cash reserve, the interest rate would be 4.22%.
If you were to choose to include a cashback option, the Interest Select plans would let you borrow more, but with a higher interest rate and monthly payments required to qualify for cashback. How you spend the funds are entirely your choice. There are no restrictions, other than existing mortgages must be repaid from the funds released.
You can choose to take all funds released as a tax-free lump sum or use the cash reserve for future borrowing. If you are using the cash reserve facility, interest is only charged on the money you withdraw, not what you’re approved for. You could unlock £25,200 withdraw £10,000 leaving £15,200 available to withdraw in the future. Interest is only charged on the money you release and depending on the plan you choose; you could pay some interest, all of the interest or put it on interest roll up and make no repayments at all.
Find Out if Canada Life Equity Release Can Help You
If you’re interested in any of the equity release plans Canada Life have on offer, get in contact with our team today
To be eligible for any equity release product, you must get professional financial advice. Jubilee can advise on all aspects of equity release including the risks, the costs and the terms.
If you are suitable and there are no other more cost-effective borrowing methods that will let you unlock the cash tied up in your property. We can assist with a whole of market equity release or a home reversion plan for those aged 55 plus comparison search, to find you the right deal at the best rates.
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