Housing equity can bridge pension gap – Key

Equity release adviser, Key, has highlighted the role of property wealth in bridging the pension gender gap, following research from Nest that revealed women could end up more than £70,000 worse off than men in retirement.

The Nest research showed that a woman on an average UK salary could end up with as much as £72,500 less in her pot after a lifetime of saving.

Nest, the largest UK pension scheme by number of members, stated that women face extra challenges when saving for retirement, with systemic issues – such as greater numbers of women working in lower-paid and part-time jobs – meaning they have less to put into their pension.

Data also revealed that women live longer than men by an average of 3.7 years, so need their pension savings to last longer.
Responding to the findings, Key CEO, Will Hale, said that women must consider all their assets when they retire, and highlighted that property wealth can make a major contribution to retirement incomes to “bridge the gap”.
“Lower salaries, more part-time or gig employment and the need to often juggle the responsibility of caring for children or older family members while working mean that many women face retirement with far less resources than their male counterparts,” Hale said. “With smaller pension pots to call on, it is even more vital that women consider all their assets when they retire as property wealth can make a major contribution to their income.

“More and more people are realising this and our own figures show 26% of equity release customers are single women compared with 14% who are single men and 60% who are couples.
“While having the opportunity to make regular contributions into a pension scheme over your entire working life is a preferable option, it is not always practical and housing equity can bridge this gap. Our customers release around £74,000 on average which is a considerable sum that has the potential to improve someone’s later life – if they ensure they look at all their assets when they’re planning for retirement.”

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