About me

I am one of the few advisers fully qualified and licensed to deal with both “traditional” and retirement mortgages and my clients range in age from 19 – 93!

Whilst I deal with all manner of mortgages including new house purchases, re-mortgages, buy-to-lets and first time buyer enquiries, the option of releasing equity from your home in retirement is an area I have found to be in increasing demand.

Having worked in the industry for so long I am fortunate to have met many people with a variety of different circumstances. I take enormous care and great pleasure and reward, in helping people when in many cases, they thought there were no options available.

My qualifications and experience mean that I am usually able to find a way to help most clients and I take time to understand their circumstances fully before I recommend any course of action.

I thoroughly enjoy my work and I am fortunate that many people I speak with have been recommended to me by friends or family, which I consider a real compliment.

What is equity release?

Think carefully before securing debts against your home. Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.

Retirement Mortgage, Lifetime Mortgage and Equity Release are all, essentially, a different name for the same thing – a vehicle for raising money when you are retired or approaching retirement and either own your own home or are looking to purchase your own home.

Unlike the schemes of the 1970’s there are now many different structures available. There is a wealth regulation in place for clients’ protection including numerous guarantees which were not in place 40 years ago.

I find that, initially, many of my clients are unsure, worried or sceptical as to exactly how Equity Release may work as much of what they have heard has been negative. I fully accept and agree that many schemes available in the past were not ideal, however I can assure you that there has been so much demand, development and change in recent years that the schemes available now bear no resemblance to those of 40 years ago.

Equity Release can relieve financial pressure and provide for a more comfortable retirement. It is also important to note that depending on the type of scheme taken it is likely that a Lifetime mortgage will reduce the value of your estate for the future. This may have an impact on any inheritance your beneficiaries may be likely to receive. Again, there are many different options to consider and your plans for the future would be discussed and taken into account before I make a recommendation.

I am confident and proud to be able to discuss the range of options available to retired clients today.

I see so many people who are worried about their finances at a time in their lives when they really don’t want financial pressure. Being able to take those worries away is tremendously rewarding and I feel privileged that I am in a position to help.

Equity release FAQs

Q: Why would I need a mortgage at retirement?

Through no fault of their own, an increasing number of people are carrying debt into retirement, or needing to raise new finance, and this can make the “Golden Years” potentially worrying.

You may need to repay a mortgage, finance some unexpected outlay or just make your retirement more comfortable. You may want to help your children with a deposit for a house, buy a new car, go on holiday or make improvements to your home.

The good news is that in all cases Equity Release can provide a safe and welcome solution and the choice is greater than ever which means I can usually find the right solution.

Q: How old do you have to be?

What is surprising to many people I speak with is that you cannot actually be too old - you could however be too young!

Ideally, you will have attained your 60th birthday however there are a number of companies who will consider this type of mortgage from age 55. There are number of financial reasons why age 60+ is beneficial.

Q: Do I have to sell my house?

The short answer is “No”

There is a specific scheme available called a “Home Reversion” scheme whereby the property is sold to the finance provider in exchange for a cash lump sum. I can assure you, however, that unless it were absolutely essential, due to your circumstances, there are numerous different options available that would enable monies to be raised whilst retaining full ownership of your home.

Q: How / when is the money repaid?

There are many different options available in terms of making or not making monthly or ad hoc payments of interest. Essentially the total loan would only need to be repaid on sale of the property – either on the death of the last surviving borrower or at the point at which the last surviving borrower were to need to move into permanent residential care.

There is no “end date” within the borrower’s lifetime at which the loan would need to be repaid in full.

Q: Am I likely to leave a debt to my children / beneficiaries?


Nowadays most Equity Release or Lifetime mortgage schemes come with a “no negative equity” guarantee.

It may be that ultimately you are unable to leave an inheritance however you can be assured that regardless of what happens in the housing market and regardless of the amount your property may ultimately be sold for there would be no onwards debt to your estate.

Q: Many people I speak to say that Equity Release is a bad thing – why is this?

Sadly, due to schemes available in the past the term “Equity Release” has got itself a bad name.

The finance industry has had to adapt as the need for lending in retirement has grown at a staggering rate and in light of this the schemes of the past bear no resemblance to those available today.
Today’s schemes have so much regulation and protection in place however many people’s thinking and many people’s understanding of the schemes available is still stuck in the 1970's!

Like all financial transaction there are advantages and disadvantages and in some cases the costs and potential restrictions for the future mean that Equity Release may not be suitable for everyone.

Whilst most Equity Release mortgages are portable, depending on the type of scheme chosen, there may be an increase in debt in the future making it potentially difficult to move house. Again, this would be taken into account in each individual scenario.

Q: Will the debt grow and wipe out any inheritance?

With some options the interest can be added on or “rolled up” over time meaning that the debt will grow. The lenders are very careful at the outset to limit the amount of money that can be raised to allow for the accumulation of interest. There are also “inheritance guarantees” available with many products which means that you are able to protect a percentage of the value of your property for the future if you so wish.

Q: What are the costs?

As with any mortgage transaction there are usually solicitors’ fees, arrangement fees, adviser fees and in some cases valuation fees. As the costs can vary considerably from one transaction to another I would always clearly set out the costs relevant to your individual circumstances.

In most cases there is no need to pay anything “up front” as most fees can be settled at completion – meaning that no fees are paid until you get your money!

Q: Can I involve my children in the conversations?


I actively encourage conversations with your family when considering Equity Release or retirement/lifetime mortgages. The transaction will have an effect on your estate for the future and it is important that all potentially affected parties are comfortable with the figures.

Having said this there may be reasons for wishing to deal with your finances independently of your family and this is also completely acceptable – after all this is YOUR finances we are discussing!

How I find the most suitable Equity Release or Mortgage option

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
I take considerable care in working out which solution may be most suitable for each individual. My range of qualifications means that I am able to offer advice to anybody, regardless of their stage of life or how old they are. If you have questions about mortgage finance then I would strongly recommend speaking with me as I can then point you in the right direction.

How I’ve helped others

Our team

Sarah Ferrell
Equity Release, Mortgage and Protection Adviser


Sarah is fully qualified with CeMAP and ER1 qualifications and she is a member of the Equity Release Council.

Current regulation dictates that Sarah has to maintain licenses in numerous areas of the industry by taking annual license tests and maintaining ongoing Continuing Professional Development (CPD).

Sarah is experienced in all areas of mortgage finance and will happily discuss your circumstances, advise you and guide you through the whole process.

Nick Ferrell


Nick holds the full Financial Planning Certificate (FPC1, CeFA2. CeFA3) and CeMAP.

He has over 20 years of financial services experience specialising in mortgage compliance and regulation.

Given the sensitive nature of retirement lending it is crucial to ensure that the process is accurate and the documentation is sound. It is important that clients have complete and clear documentation of the advice they have been given and that the reasons for all financial recommendations are fully recorded.

Nick plays a key role in ensuring that all regulatory and compliant documentation is correctly administered.

My blog

Do you really WANT to downsize?

2nd Nov 2017

Downsizing as a method for repaying a mortgage can sound like a perfect plan when the decision is years ahead. The reality is that in many cases, when the time comes, clients do not actually want to leave their homes. Equity Release could be one if the options to explore if it seems that moving […]


A fixed rate for life

2nd Nov 2017

With so much uncertainty in the mortgage market at present the security of knowing a borrowing rate is fixed for life can be reassuring. Whilst Equity Release or Lifetime Mortgage options are not right for everyone, the security of knowing the interest rate is fixed for life can provide some reassurance when planning for the […]


Retirement is not cheap!

2nd Nov 2017

There is a general feeling that at retirement we won’t need as much money as we did earlier in life. Many people, in fact, find the opposite as they wish to pursue hobbies, interests and a lifestyle that they did not have time for when working full time. This all comes at a cost and […]


Equity Release funding the “Bank of Mum and Dad”

25th Jul 2017

Many people still consider Equity Release a “last resort” however an increasing number of people are choosing this route to help other family members.


Equity Release rates at an all-time low

7th Jul 2017

A familiar concern is that rates for Equity Release borrowing are significantly higher than other finance options however this recent report shows how low rates are for retirement lending.


Interest Only Mortgages – how Equity Release can help

28th Jun 2017

I speak with many clients who think that if their Interest Only Mortgage is due to end they will have to sell their home and move to be able to pay off the mortgage.


44% of Equity Release transactions used to help family

2nd May 2017

Whilst Equity Release can be used to repay debt, it can be used for so many other reasons.


Mindset changes over where our retirement income comes from

30th Mar 2017

It has not been previously considered to take one’s property into account when looking at how to finance retirement however this is starting to change.


Can I afford the retirement I want?

25th Jan 2017

There is a general feeling that at retirement we won’t need as much money as we did earlier in life.


Speak with me today or arrange a free initial consultation

01622 631372


Sarah Ferrell Equity Release and Mortgage Advice is a trading style of Ferrell Financial Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Ferrell Financial Limited is registered in England and Wales, No. 11192749. Registered Address: 7 Clarendon Place, King Street, Maidstone, Kent, ME14 1BQ.

The information and content within this website is subject to the UK regulatory regime, and is therefore targeted at consumers based in the UK.

The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate on buy to let mortgages.

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