However, London and the South East still accounts for a third of all property wealth despite tumbling property values, according to Key Retirement’s pensioner property equity index, which revealed that Scottish retired homeowners also saw their property wealth slip slightly.
Will Hale, CEO at specialist equity release adviser Key said: “The ongoing uncertainty in the property market and the economy as a whole is having an impact on house prices but overall retired homeowners have still gained an average of more than £1,000 from their houses in the past year.”
Total property wealth owned by mortgage-free over-65s who have paid off mortgages is valued at £1.096trn – down from £1,118trn recorded earlier in the year as the impact of the market slowdown starts to be felt across the board.
Winners and losers
However, the biggest winners are over-65s in the West Midlands who are nearly £7,500 better off than a year ago with strong gains of £6,560 in Wales and the North West at £6,297.
Hale said: “Increasingly equity release customers are able to help their adult children or even grandchildren to pay for house deposits while also being able to sort out their own finances whether it is clearing debts or even paying off mortgages.
“Equity release is not right for everyone but it is clear that if your home is your largest asset you should take some time to assess what role property wealth can play in retirement planning.”
More over-65s in the North West have paid off mortgages with 671,000 owning their homes outright compared with 656,000 in the South East.