The PRWIRE Press Releases https:// 2020-11-20T04:16:23Z Retirement Income Review: Debt free equity release must be considered 2020-11-20T04:16:23Z retirement-income-review-debt-free-equity-release-must-be-considered Friday 20 November 2020. Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd (Homesafe) has welcomed the outcomes highlighted in the Federal Government’s Retirement Income Review Report, and the recognition of the importance of equity release solutions to address the funding needs of Senior Homeowners. The release of the Australian Government’s Retirement Income Review Report has recognised that the family home, which represents the largest share of net wealth for Australians aged 65 and over, is already regarded as an important role in the retirement income system. The report also highlights the availability of equity release products for retirees and that accessing home equity could have a "bigger impact on improving retirement income than increasing the superannuation guarantee". Homesafe Chief Operating Officer, Ms Dianne Shepherd said that “Accessing the equity built up in the home, to enable older Australians to fund a comfortable and independent retirement, makes sound financial sense for many senior Australians, and many already use this strategy” The only debt-free equity release alternative is Homesafe Wealth Release™, a product provided by Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd in partnership with the Bendigo & Adelaide Bank. Homesafe Wealth Release is Australia’s only alternative to reverse mortgages, and the only strategy which provides seniors with a lump sum amount debt-free. For over 15 years Homesafe Wealth Release has assisted thousands of older homeowners to access some of the equity tied up in their homes. The Homesafe solution has no repayments, no compounding interest charges and provides significant protections for the homeowner to remain in their homes, debt free, for the rest of their lives. “The Homesafe equity release product was designed to enable senior homeowners to access the wealth tied up in their homes by selling a share of the future sale proceeds of their home and to avoid going into debt. Rather than taking out a capitalising interest loan and then carrying the risk of future property growth rates as the debt increases, with Homesafe the homeowner can sell a part of their home today and protect a share of the future equity in their home for their own needs or to leave to their Estate. Homesafe customers know how much equity will remain in their hands when they eventually sell. This clarity and control over costs has been essential for Homesafe’s customers. As the number of Australian “baby boomers” reaching retirement continues to grow, the role of equity release will become ever more important and it is crucial that seniors understand the options which are available to them now, and what impact their decisions may have in years to come. Government has an unprecedented opportunity to facilitate greater efficiencies in the equity release market, not only for the benefit of individuals but also the wider economy, and to support the efficacy of the industry by working with providers of equity release products to ensure the wider ageing population can access the stored wealth in the homes when they need it the most. ENDS Homesafe continuing to assist over 60s release the funds they need whilst 'home' and 'safe' 2020-04-02T04:49:00Z homesafe-continuing-to-assist-over-60s-release-the-funds-they-need-whilst-home-and-safe Seniors debt-free equity release provider Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd continues to operate during the COVID-19 crisis, helping seniors in need of funds in these very difficult times. Homesafe’s debt-free equity release solution, Homesafe Wealth Release®, remains available to homeowners as the business has transitioned to a virtual online service, and has already assisted new customers via virtual technology in recent weeks. “For 15 years we have prided ourselves on our old-fashioned approach to service focused on meeting in person with our customers, however we are pleased to confirm we have a dedicated team who have transitioned successfully to building customer relationships and trust, in a contactless environment.” Demand for products allowing Australian homeowners to access the equity in their homes remains strong, says Dianne Shepherd, Chief Operating Officer of Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd - the provider of the only debt-free equity release solution, Homesafe Wealth Release®, which launched in 2005. “Many over 60s are suffering financial stress, yet don’t qualify for additional government assistance. “We are receiving a number of enquiries from senior homeowners in their 60s and 70s who have seen their superannuation balances diminish or have been impacted by more cuts to interest rates and continue to struggle to service or pay out their debts. “Using some of the equity in the home provides a way to meet living expenses or pay out the mortgage, to achieve some peace of mind at this time.” Homesafe Wealth Release is the popular alternative to a loan product or reverse mortgage for seniors. The homeowner agrees with Homesafe to sell a share of the future sale proceeds of their home in return for a lump sum payment today – there are no repayments, no capitalising interest charges and Homesafe only receives it share of the sale proceeds when the home is sold when the homeowner chooses, or after the death of the surviving homeowner. Homesafe is not entitled to receive any more than the agreed share and the homeowner is protected by rebates, if they sell earlier than anticipated by Homesafe. “Homesafe has received a number of enquiries from customers and referral partners over the last few weeks, and we have been pleasantly surprised how successful the virtual approach has been for the business and our customers. We remain open for business and our team is here to help during these challenging times”, said Ms Shepherd. Homesafe Wealth Release was established in 2005 in association with Bendigo and Adelaide Bank. The team can be contacted on 1300 307 059 or info@homesafe.com.au Visit www.homesafe.com.au Equity release critical for Australians to avoid 'raiding' superannuation: Homesafe 2019-07-08T00:08:23Z equity-release-critical-for-australians-to-avoid-raiding-superannuation-homesafe A recent study suggests more Australians aged over 55 are considering raiding their superannuation to pay off mortgages, highlighting the need for clarity around alternative strategies to eliminate mortgage debt, according to a leading equity release provider. Findings from RMIT and the Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed the number of Australians aged 55 to 64 still paying down their mortgage has jumped from 14 per cent to 47 per cent in 26 years. RMIT suggests more Australians may be tempted to use their super to eliminate this mortgage debt. The RMIT report follows a recent ABC TV 7.30 Report investigation which said one million households in Australia currently have at least one person who is 65 years or older and in debt: and that half of all 50-year olds expect to retire at 67 still carrying mortgage debt. Dianne Shepherd, Chief Operating Officer of equity release provider Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd, says it’s concerning Australians may feel compelled to use super when equity in the family home could be a viable solution. “This issue highlights the need for more clarity on alternative strategies to pay the mortgage aside from raiding the hard-earned superannuation nest egg. “Using superannuation to pay off the mortgage may diminish lifestyle in retirement, as people may then be relying solely on the aged pension. “Releasing some of the equity from the family home may be a powerful alternative strategy which allows retirees to reduce or eliminate their mortgage and keep their super intact.” Ms Shepherd says paying off the mortgage is among the most common uses for Homesafe’s equity release product, Homesafe Wealth Release®, which is currently the only equity release solution providing access to a lump sum debt-free. “It’s important any equity release solution is debt free when paying off a mortgage, otherwise you end up chasing your tail with debt.” She said escalating mortgage debt among over-55s shows the importance of considering the family home as the ‘fourth pillar’ of retirement. “The family home, as a store of wealth, has potential to become the fourth pillar of the retirement income system. “This would allow more Australians to ‘age in place’ without being hampered by excessive debts such as outstanding mortgages. “It’s vital the wider ageing population is aware of all their options and can access the stored wealth in the home when they need it the most.” Keating's 'longevity levy' an unnecessary impost on the young when seniors already have wealth in family home 2018-11-13T00:13:31Z keating-s-longevity-levy-an-unnecessary-impost-on-the-young-when-seniors-already-have-wealth-in-family-home A ‘longevity levy’ as proposed by former prime minister Paul Keating would be an unnecessary impost on the young given many senior Australians are already sitting on significant housing wealth, according to Peter Szabo, founder and managing director of Homesafe Solutions. Mr. Keating recently made headlines suggesting an insurance scheme funded via a ‘longevity levy’ of 2-3 per cent of wages, to provide income for people aged 80-100 who have outlived their savings. Mr. Keating says saving 9.5% of wages from age 25 to 65 cannot realistically be expected to provide an adequate income until age 90.  Mr Szabo agrees this will become ever more important as longevity continues to improve, but says there is already an answer to funding this improved longevity – the family home. “Longevity insurance already exists for many senior Australians in the form of the family home.” Mr Szabo said while there are affordability challenges in home ownership for younger generations today, current and ‘soon to be’ retirees enjoy high rates of home ownership. “It would not be equitable to require younger generations to pay a levy to fund incomes for generations enjoying high rates of home ownership, when there is an obvious alternative – expecting home-owning retirees to use some of their housing wealth to fund retirement.” For many senior Australians who may have exhausted superannuation and other savings, the home is their main or only asset. “Perhaps it would make sense for retirees to first draw down on their superannuation but as this runs out, rather than turning to an insurance scheme funded by an impost on working Australians, senior Australians can turn to their home equity to fund the next stage of their retirement.  “Both assets were built up gradually, and it should also be possible to draw each of them down gradually.  Home equity could also be drawn down to augment superannuation and ensure it does not run out.” Mr Szabo said home equity release has not been viewed in Australia as a mainstream way of funding retirement, but this will have to change with improvements in longevity. “There needs to be more discussion around the different ways seniors might access this wealth.  “Surely utilising home equity will be preferable to another impost such as a longevity levy on working Australians.”  Wealth in family home as 'fourth pillar of retirement income system' may help seniors struggling with debt 2018-10-17T05:07:21Z wealth-in-family-home-as-fourth-pillar-of-retirement-income-system-may-help-seniors-struggling-with-debt Senior homeowners may be able to clear their debts and reclaim their lifestyle if they can access the equity in the family home as a lump sum ‘debt free’, according to a leading equity release provider. Recent reports show more seniors are struggling financially: the government-run National Debt Helpline reports more enquiries from older Australians who can’t repay their debts, including home loans. The Salvation Army’s Moneycare financial counselling service has also seen a big increase in over-55s in what is termed ‘severe debt’. Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd, the provider of Homesafe Wealth Release®, says it is seeing more interest from senior homeowners who wish to use equity release to eradicate their debts. Dianne Shepherd, Chief Operating Officer and General Manager of Homesafe said the wealth built up in the family home has become the fourth pillar of the retirement system in Australia. “It’s important for seniors, today and in the future, to have access to products which can provide the ability to access this wealth when needed the most. “More seniors are being constrained by debts including home loans and personal loans, and wish to reclaim their lifestyle. “Debt free equity release can be powerfully effective in this aim by providing a lump sum to eliminate those debts and avoid the problems with capitalising interest.” Homesafe Wealth Release® has been designed to provide older homeowners a mechanism to access the wealth in their home, by providing the homeowners an upfront lump sum payment, in such a way which addresses future uncertainty. Homesafe Wealth Release® is a property transaction and not a loan, which enables the homeowner to sell a capped future share of the eventual sale proceeds of their home in return for a cash amount today whilst retaining the right to live in the home and choose when they sell. The capped share approach, provides greater certainty by ensuring the homeowner is not burdened with property growth, longevity or interest rate risks, as may be evident in alternative equity release products. For over 13 years Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd has provided its debt free equity solution via its customer centric, ‘one-on-one’ approach to customer service, and has built a respected reputation in the market by providing a facilitation model without sales staff or selling strategies. “Homesafe Wealth Release® has been designed to offer a solution which can protect the future equity in the home”. Ms Shepherd said. Homesafe shortlisted for Customer Service Experience of the Year at the Optus My Business Awards 2018-10-16T00:52:51Z homesafe-shortlisted-for-customer-service-experience-of-the-year-at-the-optus-my-business-awards Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd is in the running to take out one of Australia’s longest-standing business awards, having been shortlisted as a finalist in the Customer Service Experience of the Year category at the 2018 Optus My Business Awards, the premier event of the year for SMEs. Founded in 2005, Homesafe offers a debt free equity release solution to over 60s in Sydney and Melbourne, assisting homeowners in maintaining their lifestyle in retirement without going into debt. Dianne Shepherd, Chief Operating Officer and General Manager at Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd, said customer service is integral to the company’s solution and corporate culture. “Our greatest achievement is building a team of dedicated professionals and developing a strong company culture around delivering exceptional customer service, which has been able to flourish as Homesafe has grown. “Helping over 60s to stay in the home they love is something we are extremely passionate about. We pride ourselves on providing old-fashioned, one-on-one service, which is supported by our ‘needs based’ approach.” The Optus My Business Awards covers 28 categories, acknowledges best practice within industry sectors, as well as individual business leaders, excellence in customer service and achievements in innovation, corporate social responsibility and workplace culture. Winners from company-related categories will be shortlisted for the highly coveted Business of the Year Award. Adam Zuchetti, editor of My Business, said it is another big year for Australia’s longest-running SME awards program, with a record number of submissions this 2018. “Small and medium-sized businesses are undeniably the backbone of our nation’s economy, as well as the heart of our local communities. It is wonderful to be able to recognise them on their achievements in service delivery, product innovation, workplace excellence and commitment to sustainability.” “Every year, both the number and the quality of submissions we receive for the Optus My Business Awards gets better, making it an ever-more impressive feat for those stand-out businesses who are named finalists. Our judges really have their work cut out for them in trying to select this year’s winners!” He added: “On behalf of the entire My Business team and our long-time partner Optus, I want to congratulate all of our finalists on this stellar achievement and wish them the very best of luck for the main event.” The winners will be announced at a black-tie awards dinner on Friday, 9 November at The Star, Sydney. Visit www.homesafe.com.au  Debt free equity release continuing to be a popular alternative to Reverse Mortgages 2018-08-30T02:03:32Z debt-free-equity-release-continuing-to-be-a-popular-alternative-to-reverse-mortgages A review released this week by ASIC into the reverse mortgage market in Australia, has drawn attention to the need for safe and certain equity release solutions for older homeowners. Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd, the provider of Homesafe Wealth Release®, the only competitive alternative to reverse mortgages in the equity release sector, welcomes the report’s recommendations which seek to ensure protections for senior homeowners. Dianne Shepherd, Chief Operating Officer of Homesafe said: “The wealth built up in the family home has become the fourth pillar of the retirement system in Australia, and it is important for seniors, today and in the future, to have access to products which can provide the ability to access this wealth when needed the most”. Homesafe Wealth Release® has been designed to provide older homeowners a mechanism to access the wealth in their home, by providing an upfront lump sum payment, in such a way which addresses future uncertainty. Specifically, Homesafe Wealth Release® is a property transaction and not a loan, which enables the homeowner to sell a capped future share of the eventual sale proceeds of their home in return for a cash amount today whilst retaining the right to live in the home and choose when they sell. The capped share approach, provides greater certainty by ensuring the homeowner is not burdened with property growth, longevity or interest rate risks, as may be evident in alternative equity release products. For over 13 years Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd has provided its debt free equity solution via its customer centric, ‘one-on-one’ approach to customer service, and has built a respected reputation in the market by providing a facilitation model without sales staff or selling strategies. “Homesafe has continued to assist its growing customer base through understanding their needs and objectives, and long-term aspirations. Homesafe Wealth Release® has been designed to offer a solution which can protect the future equity in the home, to ensure the homeowner can plan for future aged care needs or estate planning for their beneficiaries”. Ms Shepherd said Homesafe acknowledges the recent release of the ASIC review into reverse mortgages and supports recommendations which seek to ensure greater protections for senior homeowners. “Moreover, we are pleased the review confirms the need for equity release products across the wider market, to assist seniors achieve financial independence in retirement - a need which is confirmed by the ever-increasing demand for our debt free alternative to the reverse mortgage product.” About Homesafe Wealth Release Homesafe provides a debt-free home equity release solution where the homeowner agrees with Homesafe to sell a share of the future sale proceeds of their home in return for a lump sum payment today – the home is only sold when the homeowner chooses, or after the death of the surviving homeowner, with the unsold share of the sale proceeds retained by the homeowner or their Estate. Homesafe is not entitled to receive any more than the agreed share. Homesafe Wealth Release was established in 2005 in conjunction with Bendigo and Adelaide Bank. Visit www.homesafe.com.au Government reverse mortgage is not enough 2018-07-31T04:56:56Z government-reverse-mortgage-is-not-enough-1 Equity release specialist, Homesafe Solutions Pty Ltd (Homesafe), has welcomed further steps taken by the Federal Government in recognising the need to address the longevity concerns of Senior Homeowners and their desire to remain in their homes long-term, rather than downsize. Whilst acknowledging the expansion of access to the Pension Loans scheme may assist some seniors to meet day-to-day living costs, the scheme, more broadly, recognises the opportunity to use the wealth in the home to provide access to financial support, and is consistent with the view the family home, as a store of wealth, has become the fourth pillar of the retirement income system.  Homesafe General Manager, Ms Dianne Shepherd, said that “We are supportive of any measure which can assist seniors to stay in the workforce, support the needs of retirees to ‘age in place’, and provide a national program for the recording of Enduring Powers of Attorney to protect the more vulnerable sections of our community.  “However, we hope the Government will consider providing more comprehensive support to providers of equity release solutions in the private sector, to assist the wider ageing population whose financial needs may not be met by such a scheme.” Historically, fewer than 1000 retirees have taken up the Pension Loan Scheme, which creates a debt to the Commonwealth Government subject to a compound interest rate and secured by a statutory charge over the home. Whilst a small segment of senior homeowners may seek to apply for the expanded scheme from July 2019, there will remain a significant number of homeowners over 60 years of age who will require access to more substantial funds to support their retirement needs either at pre-retirement stage, or over the long-term.  Homesafe assists an increasing number of over 60s to discharge mortgage debt for lifestyle purposes, renovations or assisting family members, by providing a debt-free alternative to release the equity from the family home. “The Homesafe equity release product was designed to enable senior homeowners to access the wealth tied up in their homes by selling a share of the future sale proceeds of their home.  “Rather than taking out a capitalising interest loan and then carrying the risk of future property growth rates as the debt increases, with Homesafe the homeowner can sell a part of their home today and protect a share of the future equity in their home for their own needs or to leave to their Estate.” Homesafe says the role of equity release will become more important as the number of Australian ‘baby boomers’ reaching retirement continues to grow, and it is crucial that seniors understand the options which are available to them now, and what impact their decisions may have in future.   “Government has an unprecedented opportunity to recognise the role of equity release in Australia, not only the benefits for individuals but also the wider economy, and to support the efficacy of the industry by working with providers of equity release products to ensure the wider ageing population can access the stored wealth in the homes when they need it the most.”