The aggregate value of home equity held by senior citizens rose to $5.83 trillion in 2015, an increase of $140.2 billion from the prior year, according to the National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association. The rise pushed the group's NRMLA/RiskSpan Reverse Mortgage Market Index (RMMI) to an all-time high in Q4 2015 of 203.20 from 198.53 in Q3.

On a year-over-year basis, the index increased 8.1% in 2015, compared to an increase of 7.8% in 2014 and 17.5% in 2013.

"Significant gains in senior home equity are adding stability to the traditionally three-legged retirement funding stool of savings, social security, and pensions." said NRMLA President and CEO Peter Bell. "For retirees leaving the workplace with a defined benefit plan, home equity is a fourth leg of the stool, available to tap when needed. For the millions of seniors without a pension, home equity is a valuable resource and can be an integral part of their retirement funding strategy."

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