Over-65s in the UK saw their property wealth increase by more than £6,000 each on average over the past year despite the housing market going into lockdown amid ongoing economic and political uncertainty, according to a new report from equity release adviser Key.
Total property wealth owned by over-65s who have paid off mortgages has increased by £28.299bn over the past year and is now valued at £1.124tn. This is equivalent to a gain of £6,032 for each household in this age group, according to Key’s Pensioner Property Equity Index.
The total value of property owned by over-65s peaked at £1.133tn at the start of 2020, but homeowners have still benefited from strong year-on-year increases.
Since Key started analysing the mortgage-free property wealth of the over-65s in 2010, homeowners have seen growth of 45%, a total of £73,400 per household in the past decade.
The biggest gains in the past year have come in London where over-65s homeowners are nearly £26,000 better off over the year. The only region to see property wealth decrease for over-65s was the West Midlands and losses were £235 over the year.
The South East and London regions account for over a third of all property wealth held by the over-65s while the South West and East Anglia account for over a quarter.
Will Hale, CEO at Key said: “The property market has suffered along with the rest of the economy during the coronavirus crisis and effectively shut down for months. Coupled with the ongoing political and economic uncertainty of the past few years, it has gone through a turbulent time. However, property values seem to have remained relatively buoyant and with the current stamp duty exemption, we are likely to see continued interest from buyers.
“Against this backdrop, we find millions of over-65s who have repaid their mortgages and are sitting on considerable unencumbered property wealth but may find that their retirement funds are not quite as healthy as they hoped.”