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If you were given £100,000, how would you spend it?

Posted on 21 September 2018

For many, the rising cost of living is making it harder to make ends meet. But if you were miraculously given £100,000, would you pay off your mortgage or jump straight on a plane for the holiday of a lifetime?

couple snorkeling on holiday

Living expenses have surged, with the overall cost of transport, energy, food and clothing reaching a near six-year high, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Research by SunLife shows that 45% of over 55s feel worse off than they expected to at this time in their lives. Of those who feel worse off, 65% attribute this to the rising cost of living.*

Of course, price inflation affects everyone. People of all ages are having to spend more on living and less on what they love.

So, what would you do if you were suddenly given £100,000?

We put this question to over 55s to discover how they would choose to spend their later years if money wasn’t an issue.

The findings show that the largest proportion of people (38%) would put the £100,000 towards a cash gift for their children.*

Younger generations today generally find it harder than their parents to get on the property ladder and afford other big expenses, so helping the family with early inheritance and gifts is a growing trend among parents and grandparents.

Many people would help out their family with £100,000 but what would you spend it on? Perhaps fund your home improvements or save the money for retirement? We explore what else over 55s told us they would spend it on.

A new car

29% of the over 55s we surveyed told us they would put the money towards buying a new car, providing a better, more reliable way to get around, or potentially splashing the cash on the dream car they’ve always wanted but could never afford?

A holiday

A further 27% would spend the money on the holiday of a lifetime. Whether a winter fairy-tale in New York or a sun-soaked adventure in Thailand, with £100,000 you could even treat your family to a special holiday.

A mortgage-free life

13%, less than half the number who would choose to spend their money on a holiday, would be practical and put a £100,000 towards paying off their mortgage.

Those that would put it towards paying off their mortgage are probably imagining the peace of mind that they can live comfortably mortgage-free for the rest of their lives and leave an inheritance to their family.

grandmother hugging her granddaughter

Home renovation

Making home adaptations or improvements is how one in nine over 55s would choose to spend £100,000. Many people make home improvements to add value to their home or to make it more accessible to get around and enjoy in later life.

From a luxury conservatory to an extension or a garden makeover, £100,000 could stretch to making many of those dream home improvements you’ve been wanting for years.

Instead of paying off existing debt, it seems we’re much more interested in sharing and creating new experiences with our loved ones – whether touring picturesque country lanes, soaking up the sun or investing in our family’s future.

After all, it’s by looking after our family, trying new things and bringing exciting experiences into our lives that we stay motivated and happy.

We all have a dream shopping basket and fantasise about what we would do with a life changing amount of money. But what if we had that money to realise our dreams?

It may be more within reach than you realise. Find out how you could fulfil your dreams, help out your family, or even just make life that little bit easier by discovering more about releasing equity from your home.

*SunLife A comfortable retirement – on the house February 2018

Find out more about The SunLife Over 55 Equity Release Service

For more information and to check your eligibility, call on 0800 633 5566 or request a call back.

Here's the information that you need to know about who we are and the other companies that we work with in order to provide our products and services.

Who are SunLife?

Phoenix Life Limited trades as SunLife and is the provider of the Guaranteed Over 50 Plan, SunLife Insurance and the life insurance policy payment option for Funeral Plans. Phoenix Life Limited’s registered office is at 1 Wythall Green Way, Wythall, Birmingham, B47 6WG (registered in England, no. 1016269). 

SunLife Limited distributes financial products and services and is a company limited by shares, registered office: 1 Wythall Green Way, Wythall, Birmingham, B47 6WG (registered in England, no. 05460862). SunLife Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is entered on the Financial Services Register (registration no. 769427).

You can contact us by post at SunLife, PO Box 1395, Peterborough, PE2 2TR or by phone on 0800 008 6060.

If you choose to add Funeral Benefit Option to your Guaranteed Over 50 Plan, Dignity Funerals Ltd arranges and provides the funeral services, registered office: 4 King Edwards Court, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, B73 6AP (registered in England and Wales, No. 00041598). Dignity Funerals Ltd is a member of the National Association of Funeral Directors.

Who provides the Funeral Plans?

Dignity Funerals Ltd arranges and provides the funeral services, registered office: 4 King Edwards Court, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, B73 6AP (registered in England and Wales, No. 00041598). Dignity Funerals Ltd is a member of the National Association of Funeral Directors.

The life insurance policy that pays for your funeral will be provided by Phoenix Life Limited, trading as SunLife.

Who provides My Smarter (ISA)?

My Smarter (ISA) is provided by Scottish Friendly Asset Managers Limited. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Details can be found on the Financial Services register, registration No. 188832. Member of The Investment Association. Registered Office: Scottish Friendly House, 16 Blythswood Square, Glasgow G2 4HJ.

Who provides the Will writing services?

Hugh James is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA Number:303202).

The information contained on this website is based on Hugh James' understanding of the law of intestacy in England and Wales only as at April 2014. The law in Scotland and Northern Ireland is significantly different. This is for information purposes and is not intended to be legal advice.

Who provides SunLife Pet Insurance

SunLife Pet Insurance is arranged and administered by BDML Connect Limited. BDML Connect Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (No. 309140). Registered in England and Wales Number 02785540. Registered Office: 45 Westerham Road, Bessels Green, Sevenoaks, Kent, TN13 2QB.

Who provides SunLife Home Insurance

SunLife Home Insurance is arranged and administered by BISL Limited and underwritten by a panel of insurers. BISL Limited are an intermediary authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England no. 03231094. Registered office Pegasus House, Bakewell Road, Orton Southgate, Peterborough PE2 6YS.

Who provides SunLife Car Insurance

SunLife Car Insurance is arranged and administered by BISL Limited and underwritten by a panel of insurers. BISL Limited are an intermediary authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England no. 03231094. Registered office Pegasus House, Bakewell Road, Orton Southgate, Peterborough PE2 6YS.