EY has joined the Equity Release Council as an associate member.
The move reportedly demonstrates EY’s commitment to the equity release sector and is set to provide “further external recognition” of the role of the council as the market grows.
With the addition of the Big Four firm, the council now represents almost 1,700 individual members and 700 corporate members, almost doubling both categories in the last four years.
The council’s members include product providers, financial advisers, solicitors, surveyors and other market professionals encompassing every aspect of equity release market activity.
The council said that the rise in members reflects the increase in customer numbers as more people “look to equity release products to meet diverse consumer needs in later life, from financial planning and intergenerational gifting to debt consolidation”.
Jim Boyd, CEO of the Equity Release Council, said: “I am delighted to welcome EY to the Council as we celebrate our 30th anniversary year. EY’s support for the Council, which builds on an already strong working relationship, provides a strong indication of the importance of our standards-setting work.
“In recent years the modern equity release market has seen significant growth in innovation, choice and flexibility in addition to the strong foundation of Council-led consumer protections in place since 1991.”
He added: “The market’s continued growth can help to address many of the UK’s most pressing domestic social and policy challenges. We are committed to working with members to embed the highest standards of consumer protection today and ensure our standards keep evolving to meet customers’ changing needs.
Ben Grainger, director of EMEIA Insurance – Risk and Actuarial Services at EY, said: “Having supported the Equity Release Council in an advisory capacity for the best part of a decade, we are delighted to now formally join.
“We look forward to playing an official role in the Council and will continue to support the equity release industry as it grows and innovates.”