Canada Life Equity Release Review

  • Award winning Equity Release provider
  • Flexible Lifetime Mortgages tailored to your requirements
  • Inheritance protection available on all plans

Try the Equity Release Calculator

Once you have read the review you can compare equity release schemes from other providers or use the equity release calculator to see how much cash you could release from your home.

About Canada Life

This Equity Release review focuses on Canada Life, retirement, investment and protection specialists for individuals, families and companies.

Canada Life’s parent company Great-West Lifeco was founded in 1847 and is the oldest Canadian life assurance company.

Their UK operation started in 1903 and they acquired Retirement Advantage in January 2018, a company that provided a range of simple, flexible and secure products for those approaching retirement.

The Canada Life range of equity release schemes are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and they are members of the Equity Release Council, which means they have voluntarily agreed to abide by the principles of their membership. Plus Canada Life has won awards for their products and services including:

  • The Mortgage Awards winner 2018 for later life lender of the year
  • The Equity Release Awards winner 2017 for best provider for product innovation
  • Moneyfacts 5 star award for Equity Release 2018

Canada Life Lifetime Mortgage options

Canada Life offer six types of lifetime mortgage however two are for people with second homes. Therefore for the purposes of this review, we will concentrate on the other four options which are as follows:

  • Lifestyle Options
  • Prestige Options
  • Interest Select Options
  • Voluntary Select Options

The four lifetime mortgage options are designed to offer flexibility, the ability to pay back some of the interest on a regular basis or as and when you like.

Lifestyle Options

This lifetime mortgage offers a single tax free cash lump sum of between £10,000 to £1 million dependent on your age and the value of your property. There is flexibility to include an inheritance guarantee that will ensure you leave a percentage of your estate to family and a cash reserve facility for future borrowing.

Prestige Options

The Canada Life prestige option is for customers with higher borrowing requirements and properties valued between £500,000 to £6 million. You can release £250,000 to £2 million of equity and there is an inheritance guarantee option as well as a cash reserve facility, as with the lifestyle options.

Interest Select Options

With this type of lifetime mortgage you can release between £10,000 to £750,000 of equity with the option to pay off some or all of the interest, depending on your requirements. In addition to the cash reserve and inheritance guarantee features that are available with the other Canada Life lifetime mortgages, you can choose to pay between 50% to 100% of the interest, for between 5 years and the life of the plan.

There is the flexibility to miss three non-sequential interest payments and the option to stop making the payments altogether, at which point it becomes an interest roll up scheme where the loan plus interest is paid off once you property is sold.

Voluntary Select Options

This lifetime mortgage works in a similar way to the interest select options however the payments you make are on more of a voluntary basis rather than fixed. You can choose to make a contribution of up to 15% of the initial loan every year, or unlimited voluntary contributions with a minimum amount of £50.

The Canada Life lifetime mortgage options included in this review also offer the following:

  • No Negative Equity Guarantee – which means your estate will never owe more than the price the property is sold for.
  • Additional borrowing – a feature with all of the schemes that lets you borrow further amounts in the future, subject to the lending criteria at the time of the application.
  • Cash Reserve & Inheritance Guarantee – gives you the flexibility to only drawdown the money you need and have a cash sum in reserve, which in turn will reduce the interest you pay and the ability to ensure a percentage of the property value is left as an inheritance for family.

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Are you eligible for Canada Life Equity Release?

Canada Life schemes are only available through IFA’s and independent brokers, so once you have read our equity release reviews, it is important to get advice from a specialist. They can advise you on the best course of action and also work with you to establish whether a lifetime mortgage is right for you.

To qualify for Canada Life plans the following must apply:

  • The youngest applicant is a homeowner aged between 55 and 60 depending on the type of plan you choose
  • The property needs to be worth at least £70,000 or £500,000 for the prestige options

Other conditions will apply such as the type of property and whether you have any existing mortgage against it but this information will be available through your financial adviser.

Review of additional information

  • Some of the Lifetime Mortgages come with a cashback feature
  • There is an early repayment charge that applies for the first 8 to 10 years depending on the plan you choose
  • You have the flexibility to move home and subject to it meeting the approval of Canada Life’s lending criteria, the plan will move with you
  • There is a maximum application age threshold of 90 for the youngest homeowner
  • Two of the lifetime mortgage options give you the flexibility to downsize with no early repayment charge
  • The same two schemes also have an early repayment waiver which lets you repay the loan with no charge if the first applicant dies or moves into care and the property is sold within 3 years

Canada Life Equity Release Calculator

For a quick indication of the amount of money you could release from your home, the Canada Life website has an equity release calculator on their helpful tools page that you can use, based on the age of the youngest homeowner and the value of your property.

The information provided shows the maximum amount you can borrow and the current interest rate based on the Lifestyle, Interest Select and Voluntary Select schemes.

For example a 65 year old with a property worth £250,000 could borrow between £52,500 to £92,500 depending on the plan you go for.

Compare Equity Release Schemes

Now you have read our Canada Life Equity Release Review it is worthwhile knowing how their lifetime mortgage compares to other schemes.

It is worth keeping in mind that not all advisers compare the whole of the equity release market; some focus on particular companies which may not offer you the most appropriate option.

This is why we have teamed up with Age Partnership, a leading independent specialist that reviews and compares equity release schemes with the whole of the market, including companies like Capital Life, Aviva, Legal & General, LV, Pure, One Family, Hodge Lifetime, Just Retirement and Bridgewater Equity Release.

For more information or to try their Equity Release Calculator, please click here.

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