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Two thirds of over 55s will never downsize – SunLife

  • 06/02/2019
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Almost a third of over 55s never reclaim their kids’ rooms after they have moved out of the family home, while 62 per cent would never downsize, research has found.


Around 75 per cent of over 55s never redecorate their kids’ old rooms or wait at least a year, but one in 59 wait less than 24 hours, according to the latest research from SunLife.

The survey also found that of those over 55s whose children had flown the nest, 30 per cent said they will never reclaim their children’s bedrooms, even though they have moved out.

Of those that do redecorate their kid’s rooms, around 46 per cent wait at least a year, with one in 14 waiting at least six years before doing anything new with their children’s old bedrooms.

The most common uses for a child’s old room once they have moved out is a guest room, with more than a third of those who have redecorated saying they had done this.

Overall, one in 10 use their children’s old room for grandchildren and of those over 55s with grandchildren, 61 per cent say they are most likely to dedicate their spare room to their grandchildren.

Simon Stanney, equity release service director at SunLife, said that it is common for parents to want their grownup children to be able to come back to the family home.

He added: “Most of our respondents have been in their homes for at least two decades, and it is understandable that they want to stay there, because there is no place like home.”

“On average, people over 55 have seen their homes increase in value by around £135,000, so for people over 55 who own their own home and are looking for a cash lump sum but do not want to leave the family home, unlocking some of the value in their homes via equity release rather than by moving, could offer a solution.”


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