Property increasingly seen as a retirement tool

Property wealth is growing in importance for funding care in later life – as people lose faith in savings and pension income, Key’s Tackling the Care Question report has found.

Three in 10 (29%) over-55s plan to use their homes now compared with just 19% a year ago.

Meanwhile 34% of over-55s (44% – 2019) believe their savings and investments will help fund care while 30% (40% – 2019) say they will use pension income.

Will Hale, chief executive at Key, said: “When you speak to people, you find that the vast majority are keen to receive care and support in the comfort of their own home but struggle to know how, or how best, they might meet these costs.

“With the recent economic turmoil, confidence in savings and pension income has fallen while more people are looking to the value tied up in bricks and mortar to finance care. Getting good advice and understanding what resources you have to draw on is important – and making sure you factor these potential costs into your retirement planning is vital.

“At the same time as councils are under pressure, over-55s are waking up to the reality that they may well need to pay for all or some of their care in later life. This has created the perfect storm and it is vital that the government focuses on setting out clear plans for reaching a cross-party consensus on social care, and consider long-term reform and funding of the care system.”

Over-55s overwhelmingly want to receive care in their own property – with three-quarters (75%) planning to either stay in their current home or move to a more manageable property. Just 4% would prefer to move to a care home.