Monday 28 January 2013

• One in eight over 50s can’t afford to repair parts of their home • Two fifths say their home is in need of repair


The challenge of austerity and home repairs leaves many with a home headache. Around two and a half million* over 50s say that their home is in need of repair, but they cannot afford to do the work, according to research for the Saga Equity Release Advice Service.

The most common things that need repairing are gutters (13%), roofs (10%), insulation (9%) and heating (8%), which can be expensive.  Some people could however be faced with an even bigger bill as a fifth of over 50s say that more than one area of their home needs repairing**.

This year, half of over 50s plan to dip into their savings to cover the repair costs, while almost two fifths will use their regular income (wages or pension) to get their house back into shape. The majority of those who can’t afford the repairs say they will learn to live with their home's imperfections, leaving the rest taking out loans, using credit cards or even borrowing from friends or family members to get things fixed. 

Londoners are the most likely to need Nick Knowles' help as half (46%) say that something in their home needs repairing, whereas people living in Yorkshire and Humber claim that their homes need the fewest repairs (36%).

Roger Ramsden, chief executive, Saga Services commented: “For most us our homes are our most valuable asset therefore it’s important that we maintain them the best we can. It’s important for people to explore all the funding options available to them, before allowing their home to get into a state of disrepair and therefore eroding the value of their biggest asset.”

More than half of people (56%) who release equity using the Saga Equity Release Advice Service use some of the money for home improvements and on average they spent £10,000 on home improvements and repairs***.


Notes to Editors
• *There are 21 million over 50s in the UK, our survey indicates 12% of people can’t afford home repairs. 12% of 21million equals 2,520,000.
• **Populus interviewed 8,402 Saga customers, all aged 50 and over, online between 14th and 20th December 2012.  Populus is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.
• ***Data from the Saga Equity Release Advice Service customers

Number of over 50s who need something
in their home repairing 


Number of over 50s who need more than one
thing in their home repairing 


Number of over 50s who can't afford the repairs 


Number of over 50s planning to use savings
to pay for home repairs 


Number of over 50s planning to use their
wages or pension to pay for home repairs 


  Region Most Likely  Region Least Likely 
To need something in the home repairing  London
Yorkshire and Humber
To need gutters/drains repairing  London
Yorkshire and Humber
To need their roof repairing  North West
East Anglia
To need/repairing insulation  London
East Midlands, North East and
Yorkshire and Humber

Saga Equity Release Advice Service
The Saga Equity Release Advice Service is provided by Just Retirement Solutions Limited and the Saga Equity Release Plan is provided by Just Retirement Limited.

• Equity release could offer homeowners aged 55 or over a way to release tax-free cash from their home to spend on whatever they choose.
• Expert advice with no advice fee, which could save you hundreds of pounds
• A no-obligation assessment of equity release based on your individual circumstances
• A free check to see if you’re missing out on any State benefits
• Access to a range of equity release plans at specially negotiated rates
• Exclusive access to the Saga Equity Release Plan, provided by Just Retirement Limited
• For more information please visit www.saga.co.uk/money

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