A fair approach

The Committee concluded that as society ages and demands more spending on the elderly, our society must avoid unfairly shunting the costs on to future generations. So it is important to ensure that those who are benefitting from longer lives pick up at least part of the tab

It is reasonable to expect those who have benefited from the property boom to support their own longer lives. The Committee suggests that one way to address the current imbalance would be for more older people to consider unlocking housing wealth. Equity release could enable more people to use their assets to help pay for the cost of their social care, to adapt their homes, and to support their incomes. The Committee considers that it is right for those who have benefited from windfall gains to contribute to the costs of their longer lives through equity release, rather than for the full costs to be pushed to future generations.

Because there is an urgent need for greater consumer confidence in the equity release industry, the report proposes that the Government should work with the financial services industry to encourage the growth of a safe and easy-to-understand equity release market.

As women’s and men’s experiences of older age are still, on average, different, it will be important to take into account the divergence in the situation of women and men in older age.

Ready for ageing? - full interview

Related information

Ready for Ageing?

The Public Service and Demographic Change Committee's Report:

Evidence Volume

See the oral and written evidence submitted to the Committee over the course of the inquiry:

What does ageing mean where you live?

Different areas will see different rates of demographic change. These tables  show the predicted increase in the number of people aged 65+ and 85+ in English regions between 2010 and 2030.

The Public Service and Demographic Change Committee