Equity release is a growing market with an 11% rise in this type of lending form 2006 to 2007. The market could potentially double by 2010.
The sale of Northern Rock's £2bn equity release portfolio to J P Morgan shows the demand for these assets are high. The market is set for long term growth, both from lifetime mortgages and home reversion plans.
A potentially falling housing market may even boost the home reversions side of the market. With a lifetime mortgage the debt continues to roll up subjet to a no negative equity guarantee and so can consume a greater proportion of a home if prices are falling.
With a home reversion a homeowner sells a fixed proportion of the property up front, leaving the risk over the price in the hands of the equity release provider and banking the cash.