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Consider tapping into your home equity for retirement income

Retirement income can be a concern for many Canadians as they reach their golden years. With worries about outliving their savings, some are considering tapping into their home equity to bolster their finances.

According to Pattie Lovett-Reid, Chief Financial Commentator for CHIP Reverse Mortgage, many older Canadians are anxious about their financial security in retirement. In an interview, Lovett-Reid highlighted a common fear among retirees – the possibility of running out of money. She pointed out that the typical 65-year-old faces an annual income gap of approximately $20,000.

Despite this financial challenge, many Canadians are hesitant to touch the equity in their homes. Lovett-Reid described this reluctance as a common sentiment: people view their home equity as sacred and off-limits. However, with the average retirement savings falling short – often below $200,000 – the fear of financial shortfall is very real.

Lovett-Reid emphasized that tapping into home equity isn't a one-size-fits-all solution. It's a decision that requires careful consideration. While it may not be suitable for everyone, she believes it's worth exploring as a means of supplementing income in retirement.

There are various ways to access home equity, Lovett-Reid explained. Some retirees might opt for a home equity line of credit or choose to refinance their mortgage. Others may explore the option of a reverse mortgage. Downsizing is another strategy, where retirees sell their current home for a smaller or more affordable property, or even decide to rent. Additionally, some may choose to sell their home and then lease it back.

Despite the challenges, Lovett-Reid highlighted a silver lining – there are options available for those who haven't saved enough for retirement. It's about empowering individuals to explore different avenues and make informed decisions about their financial future.

In conclusion, as Canadians grapple with the realities of retirement income, tapping into home equity emerges as a potential solution. While it may not be suitable for everyone, it's a strategy worth considering for those facing liquidity concerns. With careful planning and expert guidance, leveraging home equity could provide much-needed financial support in retirement.



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