The over-55s in the south of England are three times as likely to use equity release to fund a house purchase as those living in the North, according to more2life.
People in South West England, South East England and London accounted for almost half (46%) of all cases, with the South East the most popular area for equity release (23%). In contrast, those in the North East, North West and Yorkshire accounted for 15% of UK cases.
While the use of equity release for property purchase appears to be driven by higher house prices in the South, borrowers in the North East took out the highest average loan to value.
The equity release lender said the South West, East Midlands, Scotland and the East also boasted higher loan to value than the UK average, suggesting that in some areas with buoyant markets over-55s may need more of a boost than others.
Dave Harris, chief executive officer at more2life, said: “While the stamp duty holiday has come to a close, today’s figures highlight the important role equity release has played in helping people find their forever home. This is never easy – especially if you need to find a property that has been adapted or can be in future – but equity release can provide the boost that people need in order to achieve this.
“Although higher house prices in London, the South West and the South East have seen more customers in these regions choosing this option, we have seen the benefits right across the country. For some, it means finding their dream property while for others it means moving closer to family or amenities that support what they want to do in retirement.
“Having raised the profile of equity release with regards to property purchase, we are hopeful that this has put it on the radar of the wider adviser community and we will continue to see people benefit from these products.”