In Focus: Retirement Income  

'My property is my pension, isn't it?'

'My property is my pension, isn't it?'

Many advisers have spoken of hearing prospective clients or acquaintances comment that their home is their pension.

While there is some element of truth in that – namely an understanding that one's residential home may have gone up in value to such an extent there may be a good capital gain or equity release value in the house – advisers have sought to dispel the myth that one's house can fund retirement.

After all, it only takes a slowdown in the housing market to start pushing people into negative equity.

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Similarly, 'occasional' landlords with one or two properties in the past may have been able to secure some rental income, but with so many tax changes coming into force in recent Budgets, relying on buy-to-let as a retirement income strategy has also become precarious for all but professional landlords.

Instead, for decades, advisers and investment managers have advocated using income-generating property funds within a diversified portfolio.

But over recent years we have seen property unit trusts being suspended and, most recently, Aviva has announced it will wind up its daily dealing open-ended property investment fund.

So with both bricks and mortar looking precarious, and property investment funds no longer reliable sources of income or capital return, what place does property – commercial, residential or buy-to-let – have within an overall retirement strategy?

This In Focus podcast brings together experts across the field of pensions, equity release, mortgage advice and investment to discuss whether property still can make up a part of a robust retirement portfolio for Britain's income-hungry pensioners. 

Joining Simoney Kyriakou, senior editor of FTAdviser, is Darius McDermott, founder of FundCalibre; Martin Stewart, director and co-founder of The Money Group; Andrew Tully, technical director for Canada Life; and James Burns, partner, investment management, at Smith & Williamson.

To listen to the full podcast, click on the link above.