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Advisers question Moneyfacts’ restricted equity release service

Simon Chalk

Advisers say Moneyfacts.co.uk’s restricted equity release advice service should offer consumers a broader panel of providers.

Last week, the financial comparison website and Just Retirements Solutions launched the service with a panel of four firms including Aviva, Bridgewater, Just Retirement Limited and Stonehaven.

Bower Retirement Services equity release planner Simon Chalk (pictured) says: “If Moneyfacts is holding itself up as being impartial and an independent resource, then it should offer independent advice that covers all providers. It contradicts the strength of its offering.

“Equity release is a very narrow market and Moneyfacts has further restricted the advice that its clients can have.”

Avenue & Co Private Finance specialised lending director Ketan Yadav says: “There is a market for equity release but Moneyfacts should have more providers on its panel to spread out the risk. Right now, there is just a handful and there needs to be a broader range.”

But Equity Release Council director general Andrea Rozario says the four lenders on the panel write the bulk of equity release business in the UK.

She says: “Considering the bulk of the business is done by a small number of providers, I do not think the size of the panel is an issue.”

Moneyfacts and Just Retirement were unavailable for comment.

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