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If you are a homeowner in London, you might wonder what equity release is and how it can help you.

With an equity release plan, homeowners in London aged 55 and over can access some tax-free money tied up in their homes without having to move out. You can choose a lump sum or staged funds with a reserve facility (drawdown plan).

I lived in London for over a decade before moving back home to start a family. I'm still regularly in London, helping clients like you understand whether equity release is suitable.

We also have advisors born and bred in our capital who know the local area and are happy to visit you at home.

With our combined experience, in this guide, you will learn:

Equity Release advisors in London

If you are a London homeowner aged 55 and over looking for an equity release advisor, we are here to help you understand if equity release is right for you.

We have experience helping people like you get the right equity release advice.

Our registered office is in Fulham, London, and we have had offices in and around Hammersmith, Fulham, and Wandsworth since 2008.

When you're ready, book a free call to speak with one of our advisors or call us at 0207 158 0881. We all have experience helping clients in London and are all happy to visit you at home if preferred.

What type of equity release plans are available in London?

London homeowners have access to all types of equity release plans, including:

  • Lifetime mortgages
  • Home reversion plans
  • Retirement Interest Only (RIO) mortgages
  • Older borrower mortgages

Lifetime Mortgages are the most popular type of equity release plan in London.

With lifetime mortgages, you borrow money which is secured against your home, just like a residential mortgage.

However, if you don't want to, you do not need to make any monthly payments.

Instead, you repay the loan and any interest accrued when you permanently leave your home (pass away or move into long-term care).

Lifetime mortgages allow you to release a tax-free lump sum or more regular cash with a drawdown plan.

You can even make payments if you choose.

There are no affordability assessments; the money you can release is based on the age of the youngest homeowner and your property value.

See how much you can release by using our London Equity Release Calculator.

However, lifetime mortgages are just one of the options available to London homeowners.

Home Reversion Plans

Home reversions are another equity release option available in London. Crown Equity Release, a home reversion provider, favours London homes as they are often higher in value, have appreciated more in the past, and are easy to sell in the future.

The downside of home reversions is that they involve selling all or part of your home, whereas you retain full homeownership with a lifetime mortgage.

Retirement Interest Only

RIO mortgages are very similar to interest-only mortgages; however, where interest-only mortgages have a set term when the money borrowed needs repaying, RIO mortgages run until you pass away or move into permanent long-term care (or the last borrower for joint applications).

If you prefer to make interest payments to avoid compounding interest (a common reason people dismiss equity release) a RIO could be a good option.

You are committed to making your monthly interest-only mortgage payment, and your home is at risk if you cannot make your mandatory payment.

Older borrower mortgages

Older borrower mortgages are becoming more popular in London, allowing you to take interest-only mortgages later in life.

Most older borrower mortgages are available to homeowners over 50 and will lend late into retirement.

The amount of money you can release is affordability assessed, and you will be limited to roughly 4.5 times your income.

This can be an excellent option for Londoners with good incomes wanting to release home equity.

If you are concerned about losing your home if you cannot afford future payments on both RIO and older borrower mortgages, a voluntary payment lifetime mortgage could be your best option.

With a voluntary payment lifetime mortgage, you can pay part or all of the interest back each month, but you can stop making payments at any time. As the lender does not require monthly payments, you don't need their permission to stop; you can cancel your Standing Order or Direct Debit anytime.

Some lenders even discount the interest rate while you are servicing the interest on a voluntary payment lifetime mortgage.

Popular reasons to release equity in London

You can take equity release for anything (legal) that you want. But there are some reasons we see clients in London take equity release again and again.

Support living

Living in London costs 27% more on average than the rest of the UK. It's not surprising that the majority of equity release plans we arrange for Londoners have an element of supplementing income.

Drawdown lifetime mortgages can be a great way to support your living. You have an initial amount of money that you release and a pre-agreed reserve facility from which you can draw in the future.

Importantly, money held in reserve does not attract any interest.

I typically recommend that you borrow enough to cover your anticipated expenses for the first year or two. You can then place money for years three to ten in reserve. If you expect to need more money in more than ten years, it is usually a good idea to review the plans available at that time.

Accessing your reserve is easy, and most clients get their drawdown money in less than two weeks.

Home improvements

London has continued to grow over the past few decades, and property prices have boomed.

Now could be a great time to take some of the equity out of your property to complete home improvements.

Whether you want to complete an expensive loft conversion, replace your kitchen and bathroom, or give your home a new coat of paint, equity release could be a great option for you.

I remember a client whom I helped in Fulham. He had worked for Royal Mail all his life and had worked hard to pay off his mortgage.

He had lived in his home all his life and had no idea that he was sat on over £2 MILLION in equity.

Equity release provided the money to update his home and live the retirement of his dreams.

Help family

Another popular reason London clients need equity release is to help family.

Getting onto the property ladder is becoming increasingly difficult in the UK, but living in London makes it even harder.

Taking a lump-sum equity release could help your loved ones afford a home near family with a gifted deposit.

Similarly, many clients have taken equity release to help pay for private school fees.

Buy a second/holiday home

Whether you want a second home out of The Big Smoke or to buy a holiday home for your family to use, equity release could provide you with the money needed to buy another property.

We frequently see clients taking equity release to buy a new property in the UK or abroad.

London Equity Release Calculator

Use the form below to find out how much equity release you can get from your London home.

How much money can you release?

Our equity release calculator gives INSTANT RESULTS

Property value:
Age of youngest homeowner:
Single or joint ownership:
Property type:
Outstanding mortgage:

How are equity release plans different in London?

London is a brilliant, vibrant city and one of my favourite capitals in the world (although I may have some bias)!

However, if you are considering equity release in London, there are some important factors that you need to be aware of.

Trains and Tube lines

For us Londoners, having access to public transport is essential. And having a tube station or train line close to home can add significant value to your property.

However, for other clients outside of London, having a noisy train line near your house can seriously detract from saleability.

My flat in Colliers Wood was right next to a railway line. When my family visited from outside of London, they struggled to sleep. But for me, having easy access to train and tube lines was a must!

Therefore, it's essential that your equity release advisor works with lenders who understand the benefits of living near train and tube lines.


London offers some beutiful homes, most of which are often older than large new-build estates built accross the UK.

London properties are usually built of standard construction, but there are more homes with 100% flat roofs and tower blocks built of concrete, which lenders consider non-standard.

Many older, larger homes have been updated throughout the years with varying construction methods or even split into several separate dwellings.

We have knowledge of finding lenders for such properties and have helped people who were previously declined equity release.

As part of our service, we will also check with HM Land Registry to ensure that your title deeds are correct for equity release.


London has great flood defences, and the risk of flooding is much lower than in other new-build estates built on marshland.

However, with the River Thames running through the centre, areas are often in Flood Zone 3.

We work with all equity release lenders, including those not considering flood zones as part of the application.

Providing your home has no history of flooding and is fully insured; we can find a lender who will accept London homes in Flood Zone 3.

Property value

The most expensive properties in the UK are in London. We frequently work with clients in London whose properties are worth several £ Million.

In fact, we work with some lenders who favour high-value London properties, offering lower interest rates than those available on lower-value homes.

If you live in a high-value home, we can often arrange better deals with lower interest rates or higher releases than you will find elsewhere.

Proximity to commercial

Many homes in London are near commercial businesses. Whether you live near a common, on the high street, or above Sainsbury's, you are always close to business in London.

While access to local amenities is great, it could be considered a nuisance outside of London.

We work with all equity release lenders, including those happy to lend if you live near or above some commercially used properties.

Even if you have been refused equity release before, speak with us to compare plans across the equity release market.

Ground rent/service charges

Leasehold properties are far more commonplace in London than in other parts of the UK. And with leases, you will often have ground rent and service charges to pay.

Having ground rent in excess of £250 can be an issue outside of London. Within London, most lenders are happy up to £1,000 per year.

We even work with one equity release lender who is happy with ground rent in excess of £1,000, provided it is not more than 0.1% of your property value!

Service charges are usually accepted if they are below 3% of the property value.

All lenders will consider your home's remaining lease term. If it is inadequate, you may need to extend your lease as part of the equity release process. The good news is that you can use equity release to pay the money needed to your freeholder.

Ex-local authority (council) flats

Getting equity release on ex-council flats is much harder than getting equity release on ex-council houses. However, living in London opens up more options.

Generally, we can get equity release on ex-council flats in London, provided that a surveyor is happy that your flat will be easy to sell in the future.

Inheritance tax liabilities

Having more equity in your London home opens up the possibility of having a larger inheritance tax liability.

Most people find their home challenging to extract value from without selling it.

With an equity release plan, you can take out a loan to gift to your loved ones outside of your estate while also minimising your IHT bill.

When calculating your IHT bill on your estate's total value, equity release is a liability. Therefore it must be deducted from your total assets, reducing your estate's net worth.

If you want to make financial gifts to reduce your IHT liability, speak with one of our advisors.

How much does equity release cost in London?

The cost to setup an equity release will typically be between £1,000 and £3,000. This includes your financial advice, legal advice, and potential product fee. Over time, you will also be charged interest, and the cost of this varies on the interest rate secured and your release amount.

We charged a fixed fee of £840, which is only payable upon completion (when you receive your money). We will not charge you a penny if you do not receive your money.

With all equity release plans, you will require legal advice from a solicitor and a face-to-face meeting to witness the signing of legal documents.

You may have a local solicitor you have used in the past; however, they often cost more than specialist equity release solicitors.

We are happy to recommend Barton Law who provide great service. With their processing from their head office in Exeter they are able to keep costs lower than most London firms.

Plus, they have travelling solicitors accross the UK who will come to visit you at home - including several living in London.

What's better is that they charge the same fee, regardless of if you live in Liverpool or London.

Is there a better alternative to equity release for London homeowners?

Downsizing is the most frequently used alternative to equity release for London homeowners.

By moving to a cheaper property you can release some of the equity tied up in your home to meet your objectives.

However, the main drawback to moving to a cheaper home is that it often means moving outside of your current part of town.

Frequently, I have clients who don't want to move away from a place they are familiar with, with good access to transport, shops, and doctors.

As part of your equity release advice meeting, we can explore downsizing and other alternatives.

I have also written a full guide covering 10 GREAT alternatives to Equity Release, which you can read to explore more alternatives.

Why choose Money Release for equity release in London?

We make exploring equity release as fast and easy as possible for you.

Please speak with one of our local equity release advisors to explore releasing equity from your home.

We have already helped people just like you throughout London, including in:

  • Barking and Dagenham
  • Barnet
  • Bexley
  • Borehamwood
  • Brent
  • Bromley
  • Camden
  • City of Westminster
  • Croydon
  • Dartford
  • Ealing
  • Enfield
  • Greenwich
  • Hackney
  • Hammersmith and Fulham
  • Haringey
  • Harrow
  • Havering
  • Hillingdon
  • Hounslow
  • Islington
  • Kensington and Chelsea
  • Kingston upon Thames
  • Lambeth
  • Lewisham
  • Merton
  • Newham
  • Redbridge
  • Richmond upon Thames
  • Romford
  • Southwark
  • Sutton
  • Tower Hamlets
  • Twickenham
  • Waltham Forest
  • Wandsworth

If you have further questions, why not speak with one of our qualified advisors?

Call us on 0207 158 0881 or use our online form to book your FREE consultation.

While a qualified equity release advisor has written this guide, it is not intended to be used as financial nor legal advice and should not be relied upon.

To understand the full features and risks of an Equity Release plan, ask for a personalised illustration.

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