Australian retirees are some of the wealthiest in the world, with median household wealth of around $1.4 million. Yet close to $1 million of this wealth is tied up in the family home.
That’s a lot of money to leave to the kids, especially when many retirees end up living in homes that are too large while they struggle to afford the retirement lifestyle they had hoped for.
For these reasons there is growing interest in ways that allow retirees to tap into their home equity. Of course, not everyone will want or need to take advantage of these options. But if you are looking for ways to use your home to generate retirement income, but don’t relish the thought of welcoming Airbnb guests, here are some options:
• Downsizer contributions to your super. If you are aged 65 or older and sell your home, perhaps to buy something smaller, you may be able to put up to $300,000 of the proceeds into super (up to $600,000 for couples).
• The Pension Loans Scheme (PLS) Offered by the government via Centrelink, the PLS allows older Australians to receive tax-free fortnightly income by taking out a loan against the equity in their home. The loan plus interest (currently 4.5 per cent per year) is repaid when you sell or after your death.
• Reverse Mortgages (also called equity release or home equity schemes). Similar to the PLS but offered by commercial providers. Unlike the PLS, drawdowns can be taken as a lump sum, income stream or line of credit but this flexibility comes at the cost of higher interest rates.
While super is important, for most people it’s not the only source of retirement income.
If you would like to discuss your retirement income needs and how to make the most of your assets, give us a call.
Content sourced from Advant Group