Over the past few months we’ve had a number of seniors approach us with the unfortunate news that they’d applied for equity release or reverse mortgages from the banks and other commercial providers, only to be declined. In contrast, the Government accepts any Australian based real estate as security for the Pension Loans Scheme (PLS) where the applicant owns the underlying land (i.e. freehold title).
The reasons for the declines tend to fall into two categories:
It is quite common for equity release providers (including reverse mortgages) to restrict lending to only:
We recently had one case of a single, 78-years-young female pensioner who was knocked back due to her home supposedly standing in an ‘unsuitable location’ (100km east of Perth).
In contrast, the government accepts any Australian based real estate as security for the PLS where the applicant owns the underlying land (i.e. freehold title). As a consequence, the PLS accepts a much broader range of property types including houses, townhouses, units and apartments as well as vacant land, commercial, retail, industrial, business, self contained flats, farms, hobby farms, market gardens and oversize residential blocks (greater than two hectares).
To reinforce the contrast, the Government accepts such property anywhere in Australia which brings in all those seniors who do not live in our capital cities and major urban areas.
By way of example, one of Pension Boost’s most endearing customers is a 92 year old female self funded North Queenslander who, although she lives in a retirement village, has been approved for the PLS by providing her pineapple farm as security. We have also successfully assisted a number of seniors who live in and around rural towns as well.
Consistent with commercial providers, there are pre-requisites the Government requires to approve any PLS applicant. These include:
To find out what you’re eligible for under the PLS, try our PLS Calculator.