New research from Retirement Villages Group (RVG) reveals that one in eight (12%) over 70s have or are soon looking to downsize as a direct result of the pandemic. That offers the potential to unlock hundreds of thousands of homes in the property market as a result of shifting priorities amongst those in later life.
Downsizing from the family home – although often an emotional decision – can bring much freedom for older homeowners. RVG’s ‘Back on Track’ research shows that one in three (33%) older adults looking to downsize are doing so because their current property is too difficult to maintain, with two thirds (65%) recognising that their property is too large at their current life stage, while more than 1 in 5 (22%) are seeking greater financial freedom by unlocking equity from their home.
As well as downsizing, over 70s are taking further steps towards increasing their financial freedom, with 11% now taking a more active role in managing their finances, while those with debts have reduced their debt by an average of £866 - a total of £1.7bn across the UK – since March 2020, and almost a quarter (23%) are saving more than ever before.