Bridgewater equity release review - Finder UK

Bridgewater equity release review

In this guide, we'll review the pros and cons of Bridgewater equity release home reversion products.

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Bridgewater Equity Release arranges home reversion products for properties in England. Its parent company is the Retirement Bridge Group.

Below, we review the most important aspects of its home reversion products.

What equity release products are on offer?

This provider offers three home reversion equity release products. With each of them, you can sell between 25-100% of your property for a cash lump sum.

The following products are on offer:

  • Home Reversion Plan.
  • Home Reversion with Fixed Rent. Here, you’ll pay monthly rent at a fixed rate (minimum £200 per month).
  • Home Reversion with Escalating Rent. Here, you’ll pay monthly rent (minimum £200 per month), which increases by 2.5% per annum.

How does it work?

The amount you receive will be based on the product you select, your age and the value of your property. You’ll need to pass an affordability check if you choose to pay rent. This will be significantly less than the market value of the property share surrendered.

As a general rule, the more rent you pay, the larger lump sum you can expect to be offered.

You’ll be given a Lifetime Lease, allowing you to live in the property for as long as you wish, provided you obey the terms and conditions of the policy.

Here are the optional features you can add:

  • Rent cease. You can choose to stop paying rent at age 80, 85 or 90 if you prefer. If you’re joint applicants, these deadlines will coincide with the birthday of the youngest applicant.
  • Rent reduction. If you’re joint applicants, you can choose for your rent payments to half when one of you dies (although the minimum payment of £200 per month will still apply.)
  • Early vacancy guarantee. When you activate this option, you’ll receive a payment if your property is vacated within five years of buying the product. The payment will equal 80% of the original property valuation minus your initial lump-sum payment.

Is Bridgewater equity release safe?

A home reversion plan is safe in the sense that you’re guaranteed to remain in your home provided you meet your rent payments.

With any of these products, you’ll be well aware of what these rent payments will be, plus you have the option to cease them at a later date or reduce them if a co-owner of the property dies.

The sacrifice you make is that you’ll be selling a portion of your home for well under its market value.

You’ll have to invest in a financial adviser before being approved to buy an equity release product.

Eligibility criteria

  • Minimum age of 60.
  • Maximum age of 90.
  • Minimum property value of £100,000.
  • Available for properties located in England only (excluding Channel Islands and Isle of Man).

How to apply

You can begin your application by calling the lender on 0800 032 2118 or emailing enquiries@bridgewaterequityrelease.co.uk.

Pros and cons

Pros

  • You’ll remain in your home for as long as you wish
  • You’ll still benefit from increases in the value of your property
  • These products are not a loan, so there is no interest to pay

Cons

  • You’ll sell a portion of your home for well under its market value
  • You’ll no longer own 100% of your home
  • Rent payments will only cease or reduce in specific scenarios

Our verdict

Home reversion products aren’t as flexible as certain lifetime mortgages.

However, if you’ve decided a home reversion is for you, Bridgewater Equity Release is as good as any other provider offering these products.

Frequently asked questions

To understand the features and risks of lifetime mortgages, ask for a personalised illustration from a lifetime mortgage company. Check that this type of mortgage is suitable for your needs if you plan to move or sell your home or you want your family to inherit it. If you're not certain, seek independent advice. Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.

We show offers we can track - that's not every product on the market...yet. Unless we've said otherwise, products are in no particular order. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations of these) aren't ratings, though we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it. This is subject to our terms of use. When you make major financial decisions, consider getting independent financial advice. Always consider your own circumstances when you compare products so you get what's right for you.

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