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Reversion business set to soar

The home-reversion market will grow to 10 to 20 per cent of the equity-release market next year, claims Grainger Trust managing director Peter Couch.

Home reversion makes up only a small amount of the equity-release market – industry figures vary between 3 and 5 per cent – but the firm believes that new entrants to the market and regulation will help to boost its once tarnished image.

New first-quarter results from Safe Homes Income Plans indicate that home reversion plans made up 5per cent of business written among Ship members, amounting to 13.3m.

Norwich Union head of marketing Nigel Spencer says although home rev- ersion is not a regulated product, it has to be mentioned as an alternative in the advice process, raising its profile.

Couch says: “In 1995/ 96 the percentage was 80 per cent reversion, 20 per cent lifetime. With bad publicity, AMP stepping out of the market and GE stopping direct sales, it switched to 80 per cent lifetime, 20 per cent reversion. It is perfectly realistic for figures to revert back to this in 2006.”

Helen Brown Financial Services director Katy Ted-stone says: “This market has been very slow but I think it could be coming close to 10 per cent next year.”


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Fee spirit

Axa Management and Training management consultant Simon Olive says clients are willing to pay a fee for advice in return for peace of mind, a trusted relationship and a value-added service and advisers can profit by cutting their admin burden and concentrating on a smaller client base paying a retainer.


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