An older couple planning their retirement.

Lending into retirement

Retirement, and our lifestyle in retirement, is changing. In the past, retirement was predetermined. People stopped working in their 60s, and began to live off their pension. This was all very predictable; the period of retirement was defined, and could be short.

However, things have changed. As one famous quote says:

Don’t act your age in retirement.
Act like the inner young person you have always been.

Life expectancy

In 1982, average life expectancy in the UK was 72 — just seven years beyond men’s default retirement age of 65. Now, people can choose when they leave the workforce and can plan how they wish to live their lives after full time employment1. People live longer than they used to and also longer than they expect.

Last year a study showed that people in their 50s and 60s underestimate their chances of reaching 75 years of age. For example, men born in the 1940s were interviewed and only 65 per cent thought they would reach the age of 75. The actual figure achieving this age was 83 per cent. For women, their estimate was indicated that 65 per cent would reach an age of 75 but the actual figure was 89 per cent2.

Flexible working

The idea of stopping work at retirement is also changing. In a separate study, two-thirds regard work beyond state pension age as an excellent way of keeping an active mind. Just over three-quarters want to work part-time before retiring completely3. The population as a whole are increasingly looking to alter their working patterns as they get older and to continue to earn money in a flexible manner to fit in with their lifestyle. Retirement now means choice rather than limited options.

At Saffron we believe the providers of financial services need to adapt with the times. We believe in doing more to support the ambition and lifestyles of people in the modern world.

Moving home

Some people don’t think it’s possible to get a mortgage in their 50s and 60s as retirement approaches. At Saffron though, we don’t believe you should be limited by your age and we like to be flexible. You may be over 40 and have seen a property you want to call home, but lenders have already said no. We say, let’s talk further and see what we can do to help.

Lending into retirement

We have just launched our ‘Lending into Retirement - Downsizing’ mortgage, a standard interest-only mortgage with a difference. As the name suggests, it is available to customers who are hoping to borrow into their retirement. This mortgage stands out as it allows you to downsize to pay off your loan during your retirement.

This repayment method and a wide variety of retirement incomes will also be considered. Anyone wishing to apply for the loan will be individually assessed by one of our expert underwriters. Our aim is to help you to work out what is possible.

You will need a minimum equity in your property of £250,000 but we will consider applications below this level when alternative assets are taken into account. We may also be able to accept a lower equity limit, depending on your location.

What’s important to us is to talk to you about your circumstances, then we can work out what we can do to help.

Where to go for help

Find out more about our new Lending into Retirement - Downsizing Mortgage. Or call 0800 072 1100 and we can discuss where to go next.


  1. HR Magazine, AON, Jan 2019
  2. Independent, April 2018
  3. Express, May 2018

You can access our mortgages through Saffron Mortgage Finders or through your mortgage broker.