Mortgage misery forces widow to sell home and continue working into retirement | Personal Finance | Finance

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A widow has told Express.co.uk that economic woes wreaking havoc across the UK have forced her to downsize her property.

Eva, 65, has not only been has been pushed to sell her property but also expects to continue working well in her retirement to make ends meet. 

She says she has had to assess her finances and find a way to survive constant rise hikes relating to her property, food and electricity.

Eva told the Express: “I’m 65 and will be 66 in February 2024. I will be taking my state pension as I can’t afford not to. I intend to keep my job and am looking for more hours but not having much luck. 

“I’m in the process of selling my house and downsizing into a small shared-ownership property. This will free up some equity making it easier financially going forward.

“I’ve got no choice but to sell my house and get somewhere smaller. My house is an old house with four bedrooms and two living rooms, it’s a lot to heat and maintain, and as there’s only me living here it makes sense to move into a smaller house.”

 

Most homeowners who save into a pension do not believe they will ever be able to retire, new Living Wage Foundation research reveals.

They found that 54 percent of pension savers who own their own homes do not believe they will ever be able to retire.

Pension savers who own their homes are being forced to cut their contributions as the cost-of-living crisis bites.

The news comes as homeowners have been pummelled by 14 consecutive Bank of England base rate rises, with mortgage rates at their highest since the financial crisis, whilst also seeing massive increases in food and energy costs.

To combat the financial struggles, many people could consider downsizing as a way to free up some extra cash and put more towards their retirement or day to day costs.

Thomas Goodman at Myjobquote.co.uk, explained that downsizing can release money which can be used for travelling, home care, or as a financial supplement to a pension.

If those approaching retirement chose to pot for smaller properties, they  require less maintenance and cleaning which in turn can put less stress on the body.

He said: “Decreased mobility may make living in a bungalow or flat easier than in a house with stairs.

“Retirees living alone may benefit from moving to a retirement village where they are less like to feel isolated or lonely.”

Eva’s partner died almost three years ago, and they had been together for over 43 years, but never married so she wasn’t entitled to any widows’ benefit.   

She said “We had savings but I’ve used almost half in the last three years and that’s been purely paying bills, buying food and the normal things that everyone does.

“My state pension will make a difference. I earn £100 a week and I get a monthly work pension of £117. My state pension will be £206 a week so it will be a help.”

Katherine Chapman, Director of the Living Wage Foundation, said: “These findings demonstrate that even people who own their own home struggle to save and plan for the future.

“Homeowners on low pay will be feeling the pressure the most, and the cost-of-living crisis is making it worse.

Squeezed by soaring mortgage, food and energy costs, homeowners will find it ever more difficult to put money aside for their retirement.”

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