Aviva Equity Release Review

This review of Aviva’s lifetime mortgages is one of a series of equity release reviews, which take a close look at leading providers, so you can compare the various types of plan available and consider which might be most appropriate for you.

aviva lifetime mortgagesAviva has over 31 million customers worldwide and offers a comprehensive product range, including insurance, investment, retirement and healthcare. It is also one of the most established equity release lenders in the UK, having provided over 200,000 people with a lifetime mortgage since 1998. The company is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is a member of the Equity Release Council, which ensures Aviva lifetime mortgage customers are protected by its rules and principles.

Most recently, Aviva has won ‘Best Equity Release Lender’ and ‘Best Equity Release Lender Customer Service’ at the What Mortgage Awards 2020.

Aviva Equity Release – in summary

Aviva offers a choice of two lifetime mortgages both of which are Moneyfacts 5-star rated:

  1. Aviva Lifestyle Lump Sum Max – lets you release a lump sum cash payment of £15,000 or more, and also choose to borrow more later on, depending on your age and the value of your home
  2. Aviva Lifestyle Flexible Option – lets you release an initial lump sum cash payment, with the added benefit of a cash reserve to draw on in the future.

Both share the following features:

  • The minimum you can borrow is £15,000; for the Flexible Option that's £10,000 initially, plus at least £5,000 in the cash reserve
  • You can continue living in your home and pay nothing until you (and your partner if you choose a joint lifetime mortgage) die or move into long-term care
  • You have the option to leave an inheritance for your family with the inheritance protection guarantee
  • After the first 12 months, you can choose to make repayments, up to a maximum of 10% of the amount borrowed, or a minimum of £500 each year
  • You may be able to arrange more favourable interest rates, depending on your health and lifestyle.
  • No negative equity guarantee ensures you will never owe more than the value of your home.
  • You have the option to pay your lifetime mortgage off early, but you might have to pay a substantial early repayment charge
  • You can move home, as long as your new home meets the lifetime mortgage lending criteria. If the new property is worth less than your current one, you may need to pay back some of the loan and interest.

Remember, inflation may reduce the value of the monthly income you receive over time and taking out a lifetime mortgage might affect your entitlement to means-tested benefits or pension credit.

Eligibility criteria

To apply for an Aviva lifetime mortgage, you must meet all the following criteria:

  • The youngest applicant (i.e. you or your partner) is aged at least 55
  • The equity release property is your main home and you own it without a mortgage – you may still be eligible if you have a small mortgage, but you will need to pay it off with your lifetime mortgage
  • Your home is in the UK and worth at least £75,000
  • The property is freehold – leasehold may be accepted if there are at least 160 years remaining on the lease
  • You want to borrow a minimum of £15,000

Aviva’s equity release advice

Aviva has chosen to work with Lifetime Mortgage Direct and Retiredom Equity Release to provide advice. These firms are responsible for the advice they give but will only provide you with information on Aviva Lifetime Mortgages, not on schemes provided by any other company.

Please be aware financial advisers who only look at one or two provider’s plans rather than across the whole market may not identify the most appropriate plan for you. This is the reason why we've chosen to work with Age Partnership, the equity release specialist. They can give you independent advice and quote on schemes across the whole market, including Aviva. They also guarantee to beat any like-for-like equity release quote or give you £500 if they can’t.

Next steps

See how equity release providers compare or find out how much equity you could release from your home, using our easy-to-use calculator. It’s free and there’s no obligation to go further.

For free and independent advice on equity release call 0113 2093531 to speak to a specialist adviser at Age Partnership.

You should always seek professional advice. Before you reach a decision, make sure you completely understand the implications of a lifetime mortgage, consider any potential alternatives, and discuss everything with your family.

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