HomeEquity Bank on using the term "senior" for reverse mortgages

"Wanting to live an exciting, fulfilling life doesn't stop when you hit a certain age"

HomeEquity Bank on using the term "senior" for reverse mortgages

HomeEquity Bank’s decision to phase out the term “senior” when it comes to its services is reflective of the still-influential demographic’s impact on the mortgage market.

“Wanting to live an exciting, fulfilling life doesn’t stop when you hit a certain age,” said Yvonne Ziomecki, executive vice president at HomeEquity Bank.

“Our business is working with Canadians 55-plus who want the freedom to enjoy retirement on their terms, [and] the word ‘senior’ doesn’t resonate with everyone in the age group,” Ziomecki added.

A poll conducted by the lender late last year found that only 16% of Canadians aged 55 and above feel that the word “senior” best describes them. Alternatives suggested by the demographic included “sage”, “skilled”, and “savvy”, indicating a focus on lived experience as opposed to physical age.

Read more: What makes HomeEquity Bank a 5-Star Mortgage Employer?

“It’s time for individuals and brands to challenge the term that paints this diverse group of Canadians the same,” Ziomecki said. “With disruptive, reimagined language around aging we can embrace a more inclusive and effective way of communicating.”

According to Statistics Canada, the share of the country’s population aged 65 or older will balloon from approximately 6 million in 2014 (15.6% of the total population) to at least 9.5 million in 2030 (23% of the projected total population). A significant boost to this demographic’s collective wealth is also anticipated.

“Money is meant to enhance our lifestyle and our relationships, and money locked in a savings account or a house doesn’t do anything,” Ziomecki said. “To the extent you can get some money out of your house to help your adult children buy a house – or help them through COVID, or start a renovation in your own home or take a trip – that’s what life is all about.”