Retirement Advantage creates new Equity Release Exam Workshop dates to meet “overwhelming response”
Retirement income provider Retirement Advantage has announced that it is to add more Equity Release Exam Workshop dates in the summer. Aimed at supporting mortgage advisers, the workshops were attended by over 130 people earlier in the year, but high levels of demand meant many missed out.
Recent figures from the Equity Release Council (ERC) report that equity release lending in the UK has more than doubled in the last two years, with over-55s releasing £870m from the value of their homes in the first quarter of 2018. With over 67,000 customers adopting the product and increasingly using equity release to help finance retirement, a greater number of qualified advisers are needed to meet this unprecedented demand.
10 Equity Release Exam Workshops were run across the UK in March. The sessions, in which Retirement Advantage teamed up with training and consulting firm Fortica Ltd, provided training that prepared advisers for the equity release examinations.
Alice Watson, Head of Product and Marketing at Retirement Advantage, said:
“There was an overwhelming response to the recent series of workshops. Mortgage advisers are alive to the opportunity equity release offers and realise that they need to be better prepared to meet customer demand.
“It’s really satisfying to see advisers come along to the workshops and then a few weeks later report that they’ve made it through the exam and qualified. The industry certainly needs more advisers and the demand for the workshops was encouraging. We fully expect the next series of workshops to fill up too.
“Research shows that people over the age of 55 in the UK are increasingly looking to release the value in their property to help them finance their retirement. Advisers not yet qualified to offer advice on equity release are unlikely to be able to offer the holistic advice clients will require.
“As a leading provider we have a central role to play in educating advisers about the benefits of equity release. We are thrilled to be launching a new round of Equity Release Exam Workshops to offer advice on equity release and support advisers who want to add the equity release qualification to their toolkit and become proactive in the market.”
The training programme will involve advisers being provided with three distance-learning modules, before attending a day-long training course. As with the recent series of events, Jon Dunckley, Managing Director of Fortica, will be delivering the Workshops in conjunction with Retirement Advantage. Dunckley is a Certified and Chartered Financial Planner and Fellow of both the PFS and CISI. He specialises in helping candidates pass financial services exams first time, both as a trainer and technical author for several textbooks.
The course will help advisers break down and review the syllabus, and is designed to support them passing the ER1 exam.
Advisers can register their interest in the June Workshops with Retirement Advantage at www.retirementadvantage.com/adviser/support/events/equity-release-exam-workshops.