Seniors’ Access to Home Equity

Research Report

Seniors’ Access to Home Equity

Identifying Existing Mechanisms and Impediments to Broader Adoption
February 28, 2017

Abstract

Senior citizens are sitting on a mountain of housing wealth. And even though nearly 37 percent are concerned about their finances in retirement, only 6 percent are willing to tap into their home equity. This paper looks at the reasons older homeowners are so reluctant to draw on housing wealth and finds that many simply want to avoid debt while others face structural impediments to borrowing against home equity. The authors offer several recommendations for easing these structural impediments.

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