RMIT expert available for comment on the federal government call for more widespread use of equity release products

RMIT expert available for comment on the federal government call for more widespread use of equity release products

An expert from RMIT University is available to talk about the Prime Minister and Assistant Minister for Superannuation’s recent comments on self-funded retirees accessing equity in their homes.

Associate Professor Stuart Thomas (0409 372 287 or stuart.thomas@rmit.edu.au)
Topics: retirement savings gap, equity release, ageing in place

“Despite Australia’s high rate of home ownership, for many superannuation and the age pension will not be enough to support them comfortably, especially in late retirement.

“If the government is genuine about making equity release a more prominent method of retirement funding, and addressing this gap, it needs to address low financial literacy in this area.

“In our report on reverse mortgages released today, we found most Australians don’t understand what equity release is, or the benefits of using products like reverse mortgages and home reversion to fund their retirement.

“Currently, equity release products - and reverse mortgages in particular – are often being used to pay out current debt, ahead of other uses such as home improvements to allow them to stay in the home longer, or for income support during their retirement.

“Australia also lacks a deep and diverse equity release market, with disjointed regulation between states and the federal government among several barriers to entry for innovative new products.

“This needs to change if equity release is to play a more prominent role in funding retirement in Australia.”

The full report Reverse mortgages: Financing ageing in place, is now available.

Dr Stuart Thomas is an Associate Professor in the School of Economics, Finance and Marketing at RMIT. Prior to his academic career he worked in a “Big 5” accounting and business advisory firm and before that in the IT industry. He has a diverse portfolio of research interests including innovation in the finance sector and private retirement funding through alternatives to superannuation. 

 

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For media enquiries, please contact RMIT Communications: 0439 704 077 or news@rmit.edu.au

 

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