Yet, traditional choices remain limited.
Office of National Statistics research has established that home ownership among retirees living on the lowest disposable incomes has grown by over 15% in the last three to four years (to around 660,000 households) while state pensions are now ranked as the worst in the developed world.
What’s more, a survey of homeowners aged 55 or over by SunLife Insurance has discovered that around 20% of respondents felt they were worse off financially than they expected and 43% were concerned their pensions would not be sufficient to cover retirement.
Dwindling returns on employment pensions, an upward surge in prominent company pension collapses, rising inflation and historically low interest rates on savings are serving to compound existing problems for many people in later life.
This means the choice between pension-funded retirements and equity release options is becoming increasingly one-sided.
Which is why more and more people are choosing to access equity capital from their properties.
The Equity Release Council reported that the market for equity release has more than doubled over the past two years and that lending figures for the first quarter of 2018 are almost double the same period in 2016.
There is a very good reason for this.
Customers can use equity tied up in their homes to fund retirements and other expenses as well as to facilitate inheritance bequests, while taking comfort from fully regulated securities offered by no negative equity guarantees and the right to retain residency.
Which means that retirees can face the future with a renewed sense of optimism – even those currently struggling away on desperately low incomes.
The debate between pensions and equity release is becoming increasing obsolete.