Remortgaging vs. Equity Release: Weighing the Pros and Cons


19/01/2024 / By The MortgageHelp

When homeowners find themselves in need of additional funds, two common options in the United Kingdom are remortgaging and equity release. Both strategies provide a way for individuals to unlock the value tied up in their homes, but they come with distinct advantages and drawbacks. In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of remortgaging vs. equity release, helping homeowners make informed decisions about their financial future.


  Remortgaging involves replacing an existing mortgage with a new one, often with a different lender or new terms. Here are the pros and cons of remortgaging:

Pros of Remortgaging:

1. Lower Interest Rates:

Remortgaging can allow homeowners to secure a lower interest rate, potentially reducing monthly mortgage payments and overall interest costs.

2. Flexible Loan Terms:

Borrowers can negotiate new loan terms, such as extending or shortening the repayment period, depending on their financial goals.

Access to Equity:

Homeowners can release equity by increasing the size of their mortgage, giving them a lump sum to use as they see fit.

Cons of Remortgaging:

1. Strict Approval Process:

Remortgaging requires meeting the lender’s eligibility criteria, and the application process may involve income verification and credit checks.

2. Potential Costs:

There may be fees associated with remortgaging, such as arrangement fees, legal fees, and valuation costs, which can offset the potential savings.

3. Extended Repayment Period:

While extending the repayment period can reduce monthly payments, it may lead to paying more interest over the life of the loan.

Equity Release:

Equity release allows homeowners aged 55 and older to access the value tied up in their properties without the need to move. There are two main types of equity release: lifetime mortgages and home reversion plans.

Pros of Equity Release:
1. No Monthly Repayments:

With most equity release plans, there are no monthly repayments, allowing homeowners to access funds without affecting their monthly budget.

2. Stay in Your Home:

Homeowners can continue to live in their property for the rest of their lives, maintaining ownership and control.

3. Tax-Free Lump Sum:

The money released through equity release is typically tax-free, providing a lump sum or regular income to the homeowner.

Cons of Equity Release:
1. Accumulating Interest:

With lifetime mortgages, interest accrues over time, potentially leading to a significant sum owed when the homeowner passes away or moves into long-term care.

2. Impact on Inheritance:

Equity release can reduce the value of the estate, impacting the inheritance left for beneficiaries.

3. Potential for Negative Equity:

 If property values decline, there is a risk of the outstanding loan amount exceeding the property’s value, leading to negative equity.


Choosing between remortgaging and equity release requires careful consideration of individual circumstances, financial goals, and preferences. Homeowners should weigh the advantages and disadvantages of each option and seek professional advice to make informed decisions tailored to their specific needs. Whether opting for remortgaging or equity release, understanding the long-term implications is crucial in securing a stable and comfortable financial future.

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