Call us now on

0800 201 4811

A stress-free way to downsize: it’s a good deal for everyone

Tim Adler

Tim Adler

Author

Lifestyle

Nearly half of Britain’s pensioners would like to downsize, which could transform their lives and their emotional wellbeing

Young people today have difficulty getting on the housing ladder, partly because a shortage of homes means first-time buyers are being priced out of the market. So could encouraging pensioners to move into more suitable homes be the key to ending Britain’s worsening housing crisis?

At present there are 5.7 million pensioners who would like to downsize, which could free up millions of homes across Britain. Downsizing would help to unlock the UK housing chain, releasing a significant number of homes, according to McCarthy & Stone’s annual Retirement Confidence Index.

More importantly, people who have downsized to a McCarthy & Stone apartment have found their lives transformed, no longer worrying about the maintenance of houses they are unable to cope with and finding themselves at the heart of a vibrant social community.

And if those pensioners – 38 per cent of the population aged over 65 – were all to move then £619 billion of housing stock would become available for families and first-time buyers.

The pressure for Government to enable the provision of more accommodation for those aged 65 and over can only increase. By 2045, more than 13 million pensioners in Britain will consider moving – especially if pensioners were exempted from stamp duty.

Clive Fenton, chief executive officer at McCarthy & Stone, said: "The rise in the number of downsizers is an inevitable consequence of the UK’s rapidly ageing population. By 2045, those aged 65 and over are expected to increase to more than 18.7 million, which will expose the UK’s grossly inadequate level of housing for older people if we maintain the status quo.

"We will simply lack the necessary infrastructure and support services to deal with the demographic shift we face."

People expect to release £80,000 of equity on average with a move, equating to £442 billion in total. More than £1 trillion in equity could be released across the UK in 2045 if 13 million people were to downsize. Mr Fenton added: "The ability to release equity from the value of homes in later life provides a strong economic benefit for downsizers. As the strain on the social care system rises, we will find more and more people tapping into their housing wealth to cover the costs of retirement and care."

Yet it’s the psychological benefits of living with other people, rather than feeling marooned when children have grown up and moved away, which has the biggest health-positive effect. That and embarking on a new stage in your life journey by taking up a new hobby or staying physically healthy by participating at one of the many exercise classes McCarthy & Stone offers.

In short, a healthier, happier and more engaged older population. No wonder many homeowners say they wished they’d made the move sooner.

Mr Fenton says: "Despite the warning signs, the UK’s housing stock is woefully unprepared for the demographic shift to an ageing population, which has created a new ‘Generation Stuck’ dilemma. While desiring to move, as our study clearly shows, those in later life are discouraged by the lack of suitable housing.

"Encouraging moves at the top end of the housing chain will stimulate activity, release millions of under-occupied family homes on to local markets, and help younger people move up the ladder. It’s a win-win."

To find out more about current retirement properties for sale across the country, click here

Like this article? Subscribe to receive updates...
Subscribe to receive notifications when we post new articles to our online magazine.
Loading...
By subscribing to these updates you’re agreeing to receive email updates when new articles are published to the McCarthy & Stone online magazine.
We’ll never send you spam or sell your details. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Related Articles

Lifestyle

Blooming Marvellous: The Chelsea Flower Show

The world-famous RHS Chelsea Flower Show. It’s the most glamorous day out in the gardening calendar.

The grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea are once again blooming with flora as the Royal Horticultural Society prepares to welcome 157,000 spectators to their annual five-day flower festival in May. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Working After Retirement – Is It For You?

More and more people are choosing to put off their retirement and continue working. Plus, in many other cases, those who have already retired are looking to return to work. Here, we weigh up the pros and cons of each situation. ...Read more

Lifestyle

How To Manage Your Diet In Retirement

There are many extra demands placed on our bodies as we progress through life and because of this our nutritional needs also change as a result. It is never too late to revamp your nutrition and nurture your body with a healthier diet.   ...Read more

Lifestyle

Tackling loneliness among older people with Pen Pals

We understand the problem of loneliness amongst older people and we want to do something to combat it. That’s why we have created our latest Pen Pals programme, an outlet to connect older people with other older people in communities by the writing and exchanging of letters. Click to find out more. ...Read more

Lifestyle

How To Make New Friends In Retirement

Friendship is hugely important at every stage in life, and retirement is no exception. What’s more, in retirement you could make the most of the extra free time you have to discover different experiences and meet new people – leading to new friendships and relationships.  ...Read more

Lifestyle

Sheffield – The Steel Centre of the World

Famed for its industry and innovation, the green, modern cityscape now replaces the smoking chimneys from the industrial revolution. There’s a friendly, independent and alternative spirit that can be hard to find in other cities alongside a thriving cultural scene. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Wally & The Flying Scotsman

Popular North Gate Court customer Wally Blazey moved into their McCarthy & Stone apartment with his wife Gladys seven months ago, and the couple have just celebrated their 72nd anniversary. At 92, Wally is one of the two last surviving drivers of the Flying Scotsman, the most famous steam locomotive in the world. ...Read more

Lifestyle

The Top 11 British Hidden Gems

Where are the best locations in the UK to visit... that you've probably not heard of? We've ranked the best hidden gems around Britain, that are easy to access, and offer a great weekend away with the family. ...Read more

Lifestyle

Do Pets Make You Happier?

Whether you're a pet owner or have a pet free home, animals of all kinds have been proven to improve the happiness of their human counterparts. To find out more McCarthy & Stone conducted a survey to see how pets enrich their owners lives. Here are the results! ...Read more