Half of people over 50 'to sell homes for retirement'
Published on 27 September 2013 02:00 PM
More than half of over-50s are relying on the equity in their property to cover the costs of old age, a survey suggests.
Some 52% of workers aged over 50 said they would have to sell their home to fund their retirement - equivalent to around three-and-a-half million people.
This is almost double the 28% who said the same last year, the figures show.
The poll, conducted by insurance firm LV=, found that just one in four people in their 50s is now on track to retire as planned.
A similar number of respondents said they were delaying retirement for financial reasons.
More than one in 10 (13%) said they would retire at the age they planned but on a reduced income, while the same proportion said they were still unsure of their plans and would simply have to 'wait and see'.
Just one in four people ‘on track to retire as planned'
Millions of people have found that their retirement pots have been eroded in recent years by rock-bottom interest rates on savings.
And experts have warned that selling their home could be the only option for many older people who are also likely to face soaring care bills.
Figures show that more than one-and-a-half million retired people have been forced to sell their homes in the last five years to pay for care.
Another two million are thought to be close to putting their houses on the market, leaving them with nothing to pass on to their children and grandchildren.
Former Government pension adviser Dr Ros Altmann warned that savers were likely to face tough decisions when they reach retirement age, as many find that their anticipated pension income will not materialise.
She said: 'The over-50s are innocent victims of the financial problems caused by irresponsible borrowing and lending by others. Many are faced with the stark choice of selling their home to release some money, or continuing to work to make ends meet.'
Marino Valensise, of Barings Asset Management, added: 'It is worrying that the number of people relying exclusively on their property to fund retirement has increased.'
Copyright Press Association 2013