One business model that exists in France but does not have a direct equivalent in the UK is the viager system for taking equity out of your home. The closest we have is Equity Release UK but the two systems are very different.
The viager system is a sale of a house or apartment between two parties and it is fairly common in France. The way it works is that the owner or two owners of a property, usually elderly, advertise their house for sale almost in the same way that they would with a regular sale.
The sale price is always quite a way below true market value but in addition to the price of the house, the buyer also pays a set sum each month to the seller for the rest of his life. The seller also has lifetime enjoyment of the property, so the house or apartment only passes to the buyer on the death of the seller or if they are a couple, when both of them die. (more...)