New financial and legal demands likely from older borrowers
Reports of recent research undertaken by the Post Office highlight that thirty five percent of homeowners now expect to be in their seventh decade before they pay off their home loan. This will undoubtedly provoke changes in the approach people take regarding their financial and their legal affairs.
‘I expect that there will be developments in mortgage products and lending policy over time to reflect this,’ suggested Eddie Goldsmith, Senior Partner at Goldsmith Williams ‘and I’m sure brokers will keep abreast of those changes. However, what may slip under their radar is how this shift in customer behaviour will affect their clients’ demands for legal services.
Whilst making a will is sometimes the last thing that clients will want to consider whilst they are in the throes of their move or remortgage these older clients who are still paying off a mortgage are more likely to recognise the importance of ensuring that their all financial and legal affairs are in good order. From conversations with many of our clients we find that they are very receptive to the offer of making or updating a will or drawing up a Lasting Power of Attorney.
A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document which allows the applicant to appoint someone they trust to make decisions about their health and welfare or financial affairs should they lose capacity in the future and so is particularly appropriate for these older homeowners.
Moreover the recent Private Members Bill proposing that the terminally ill with fewer than six months to live be granted the right to die will, if passed by Parliament, give good reason for all homeowners to protect their property assets by taking up a Lasting Power of Attorney.
‘As a leading practitioner in conveyancing and remortgaging we’ve been championing the drawing up of LPAs to all our clients for some time. We believe that having this protection is in the client’s, and their loved ones best interests. And with the announcement of reduced fees to register an LPA from 1 October 2013 there’s never been a better time to suggest drawing one up. So I appeal to all brokers to join with me and highlight this opportunity for legal protection to their clients.
Content correct at time of publication