Client Stories

What our Clients have to say…

Many New Zealanders are now making use of the Sentinel Lifetime Loan to enhance their quality of life in retirement.  Here are comments from some of our customers about the Sentinel Lifetime Loan.

“A big thank you from me to Sentinel for helping me with a Sentinel Lifetime Loan. I have painted the house inside and out.  It looks like a million dollars now.  I will certainly be recommending Sentinel to anybody about your Lifetime Loan.  Once again, thank you so much.”

R.C.  Hamilton

“We would like to say thank you for the opportunity, the help, the consideration and advice you have given us in obtaining our Lifetime Loan.  Certainly a reason to smile!”

A.H.  Auckland

“My wife and I take this opportunity to thank Sentinel for the Lifetime Loan to us.  Our loan has assisted us to update our car, redecorate our unit, and thanks to you we plan a holiday later this year.”

R.E. Auckland

“I am most grateful to you for processing my loan so quickly.  I have been to Sydney to enjoy my grandson’s wedding and some time with my lovely daughters and their families.  I have appointments for a new hearing aid and new spectacles so knowing I can update myself in these matters is such a comfort and still feel secure with some money in the bank.  So thank you.”

I.H.  Hamilton

Our Pledge

The Sentinel Lifetime Loan Pledge

We recognise the trust that those taking out the Sentinel Lifetime Loan have placed in us.  In return, we make the following promise…

Pledge One

There is no requirement to make any loan repayments during the term of the loan.

Pledge Two

Your home will remain the place you live in for as long as you choose. When it is time for you to leave your home our No Negative Equity Guarantee means that, so long as all conditions of the loan have been met, what you will be required to repay following your death or moving to permanent long-term care will not exceed the sales proceeds of the property. There is no extra charge to you for this guarantee.

Pledge Three

It is important that you are absolutely happy with all aspects of the Sentinel Lifetime Loan. For this reason your legal work will always be performed by the solicitor of your choice who will then work with us to make sure everything has been fully explained and discussed. If at any time you want to contact Sentinel regarding the loan or any related matter we’ll be ready and waiting to help you.
Vaughan Underwood
Chief Executive Officer

Common Questions

Frequently asked questions about the Sentinel Lifetime Loan…

Because Sentinel’s Lifetime Loan is probably a new concept to you and your family, you may have questions about the Sentinel Lifetime Loan, and how it works.  

Below are a number of questions we imagine you may be asking, however for more detailed information please refer to  our brochure, or contact us here at Sentinel on 0800 488 740. 

How much will I be able to leave my Family ?

This will depend on how much you decide to borrow, interest rates, house price inflation and how long the loan is in force.  You can use the calculator on this website to estimate how much equity will remain in your home, at different house growth rates, over time.

Can I pay off all or part of the loan at any time ?

Although the loan is intended to be lifelong and you are not required to make any payments until the end, you can choose to repay all or part of the loan at any time.  As long as your loan is on a variable interest rate no early repayment fees will be charged.

Can I transfer my loan to my new house if I decide to move ?

The transfer of a Sentinel Lifetime Loan from one property to another is dependent on:

– the sale price of the existing property,
– the lessor of the buy price and value from a registered valuation (excluding chattels) of the new property,
– the age of the youngest resident at the time of transfer
– the balance of the loan (including all interest that has been added to the loan) at the time of transfer,
– the type of the new property
– a title search.

It is important to understand that there may be instances where the transfer may not be possible.

The ability to transfer a Sentinel Lifetime Loan to a Licence to Occupy Retirement Village unit is governed by the village management and the amount if allowably is very limited.

It is important to take into account real estate fees, moving costs and solicitor’s fees when calculating how much it will cost to move.

What happens to my home when I die or move into permanent long-term care?

Usually, the loan is repaid from the sale proceeds of your home.   The loan becomes repayable when you move permanently from your home – usually when you pass away or move into long term care. 

Can I borrow more later if I need it ?

You can apply to borrow more at any time. The amount that you may be entitled to borrow will depend on whether you have already drawn your full entitlement.

Any entitlement to further funds, over and above the original approved loan, is based on the age of the youngest resident at the time of applying and the property value at that time.  The current loan balance including accumulated interest is deducted from the entitlement to determine any additional funds that may be available. 

Who owns my home?

You always own your home, and can live there for as long as you choose.


For further details and in-depth answers to your questions about the Sentinel Lifetime Loan please contact us on 0800 488 740.  We’re always happy to help.

Sentinel Lifetime Loan

Helping you maintain financial independence

The love affair New Zealanders have with their home is well documented.  So imagine being able to release some of the value you’ve built up in your bricks and mortar, without having to move. 

If you are aged 60 or over and own your own home, the Sentinel Lifetime Loan may provide you with a cash resource that you can use for whatever would make you smile.

Discover a new lease on life

With the Sentinel Lifetime Loan you can take some of the equity out of your home without having to sell, to help you maintain your financial independence in retirement. Now, your bricks and mortar could be worth their weight in gold.

The Sentinel Lifetime Loan is designed to last you the rest of your life and is usually repaid only when you die or move into long term care, although you have the freedom to repay at any time, without penalty as long as your loan is on a floating interest rate.  Unlike traditional loans there are no monthly repayments – in fact there is nothing to pay until you decide to sell the house or upon your death, moving into long term care or moving out of your property for any other reason.

With the Sentinel Lifetime Loan you are in control.  You can manage your loan and access funds as and when you need them.

Lifetime Loan Brochure and Fact Sheet

To receive a comprehensive brochure about the Sentinel Lifetime Loan, please call us on 0800 488 740 and we will be pleased to send one to you, or to download our brochure click here.  

Unfortunately due to current global financial conditions Sentinel has temporarily stopped accepting new loan applications.   Existing clients with Express Top-up facilities are unaffected and can continue to drawdown funds as usual.  If you would like to provide us your details and be contacted once Sentinel resumes new business lending please contact us and let us know.

Disclosure Statement


Sentinel Disclosure Statement – Qualifying Financial Entity

NAME:                         Sentinel Limited
TRADING NAME:        Sentinel
P O Box 33 1040,
Takapuna, AUCKLAND 0740
Level 1 87 Hurstmere Road,
Takapuna, AUCKLAND 0622

Phone: 0800 488 740

This is important information – it provides information about the product and advice that Sentinel offers and should help you to decide which financial adviser to choose.
Sentinel is a Qualifying Financial Entity (QFE) under the provisions of the Financial Advisers Act 2008, our registration number is FSP48342.  This information can be checked on the Financial Service Providers Register at  Sentinel is regulated by the Financial Markets Authority (FMA), you can obtain more information about the FMA from their website or by calling them on 04 472 9830.
What sort of advice can a Sentinel QFE adviser provide?
Sentinel QFE advisers can give you information relating to the features and suitability of the Sentinel Lifetime Loan product.  The Lifetime Loan is a Home Equity Release mortgage and is classified as a Category 2 product under Financial Advisers Act 2008.
How are Sentinel advisers paid?
Sentinel staff are Nominated Representatives who are based in our office and will generally be in contact with you by phone, letter or email.  They do not receive any sales incentives for the completion of loans.  Sentinel also has a number of Nominated Representatives who can come out to your home.   There is no cost to you for their service; however they receive a commission from Sentinel when your loan is issued.

What to do if you have a complaint about: Sentinel, your Sentinel Lifetime Loan, or any aspect of your experience with us?

Sentinel is always striving to offer the best product and service we can to meet your needs.  If something happens that you are not entirely happy about we need to know so we can solve the problem and stop the same thing occurring in the future.

Please contact us as soon as anything occurs that you are unhappy with and we will do our best to solve the problem immediately.

If your complaint is serious and it can not be easily fixed we will ask that you provide us the details in writing, including the nature of the complaint and what you think should be done to resolve the situation.  We will notify you when we receive the complaint and then investigate all aspects of the matter before attempting to resolve all of your concerns.  We will keep you up to date with progress and advise you of any outcomes in writing.

What if I am still unhappy?

If you are not satisfied with our suggested solution Sentinel is a member of the Insurance & Savings Ombudsman’s Service of New Zealand (ISO), who act as our licensed dispute resolution service.  You can contact the ISO by;

Phone:             0800 888 202
Post:                P O Box 10 845, Wellington 6143

Who are we?


A Tradition of Innovation, Integrity and Smart Product Solutions…

Sentinel was launched with the specific aim of bringing to New Zealanders the very best features of a retirement lifestyle enhancement concept known as the Home Equity Release Loan.

Sentinel is the founding company of Seniors Money International Ltd, a leading global provider of equity release solutions for Seniors, with operations in New Zealand, Australia, Ireland, Canada and South Africa. 

The Board of Directors of Seniors Money International Ltd and the Sentinel management team are profiled below:



Right Hon. Jenny Shipley DCNZM, FNZIM (New Zealand)  Chairman

A former Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jenny is now a director and advisory board member for a number of companies and organisations in New Zealand and elsewhere.  She retains her interest in international politics through her involvement in the Club of Madrid, a group of former Presidents and Prime Ministers of democracies.

Ian Hendry FCII APMI (New Zealand) 

Deputy Chair

Ian has an extensive background in marketing and sales in the financial services industry, working for Eagle Star Insurance Company in the UK and Hong Kong before founding Sovereign Limited with Chris Coon in 1989, where he became Managing Director.  Ian retired from Sovereign in 2002.

Stephen Gunning  BComm FCA (Ireland) 

Group Chief Executive Officer

Stephen has served as Chief Financial Officer, Managing Director and Treasurer of publicly listed and privately held corporations in Europe and the United States.  Stephen joined the group in August 2005 to found and head up our European operations.  .

Brett Wilson BCom CA (NZ)  

Group Finance Director and Company Secretary 

Brett has 20 years experience in financial services.  He spent 8 years with Sovereign as CFO and was previously CFO for Metropolitan Life.  Before joining Seniors Money International he was General Manager Finance for the ASB.   


Vaughan Underwood – MBA Chief Executive Officer

Vaughan was formerly CEO of AXA New Zealand, Sterling Grace Portfolio Management Ltd (part of Spicers) and Emerald Group (Food Division) before joining Sentinel in January 2007.   

Garry Bishop – BCom BSc Operations Director

Garry’s background is in the areas of Finance, Maths and Computer Systems.  He has spent the last 15 years in the financial services and insurance industry working in both operational and information technology areas.  Garry started with Sentinel in September 2003, six months prior to the company’s official launch.    


Financial Independence in retirement – now there’s a Reason to Smile.

Imagine being able to release some of the value you’ve built up in your home without having to move.  Just thinking about it has probably brought a smile to your face.

Rather than just dream about the possibility, if you (and your partner) are aged 60 or over and own your own home, the Sentinel Lifetime Loan could open the door to a whole new lease on life.

Inside our website, you’ll find information all about the Sentinel Lifetime Loan and how it works; client stories, and much more.  There’s also a calculator to show you how much you can borrow and how your loan and the equity in your home may change over time.

So why not take your time and browse through the website to find out more, or contact the Sentinel team on 0800 488 740 – we’re always happy to help.

Due to the global financial environment and restricted access to funds Sentinel has temporarily stopped accepting new loan applications, existing clients with Express Top-up facilities are unaffected.

Different type of cuts for an engagement ring

A diamond is considered to be quiet pricey and very personal and that is why most of the people opt for a diamond when they are gifting the engagement ring to the partner.


Different types of cuts are there which helps in enhancing a diamond engagement rings and that is why you need to choose the diamond ring and its cut by scrutinizing everything.


  • Round cut: the Round cut is basically for someone who is very much drawn towards the timeless and classic style. This round brilliant cut is perfect for people who want to wear a very traditional look and this engagement ring will last for many ages. So if you are looking for that maximum sparkle, then the round cut is something you should be considering.


  • Princess cut: The Princess cut diamond will be square in shape and it will have beveled four sides and it creates the pyramid appearance with a shiny surface. If you want to incorporate modern design with maximum sparkle, then this is the perfect ring cut. The ring looks contemporary because of the clean lines.


  • Emerald cut: Emerald cut helps in flaunting the refinement and elegance. This elongated shape is perfect for someone who is on the understated side. If you are a woman having a very discerning taste, then it is perfect from you because it helps in blending classic style with the edge.


  • Cushion cut: Trendiness and feminine come to a point where the cushion cut is developed. If you are looking for the soft look with maximum sparkle, then this cushion cut is perfect for you.


  • Oval cut: Oval cuts are becoming quite popular among the diamond rings because this cut is going to help you in providing those elegant and classic aesthetic look.


  • Marquise cut: Marquise cut is for people looking for ultimate elegance because the pointed ends will be meeting with the Navette cut. Apart from being unique, this ring cut is going to create the illusion of having an elongated hand.


  • Radiant cut: Radiant cut is quite similar to emerald cut and it looks like the octagon. This ring will be a dazzler and it is specifically for the women who are very outgoing and bubbly in nature. With a lot of flash and sparkle, this rectangular shape with brilliant faceting diamond cutting is going to steal the limelight.


  • Asscher cut: Asscher cut helps in showing some sophistication and it is specifically for the women who are looking for unique and antique design and want those retro look. This cut is quite similar to the emerald cut.


The cut of the diamond should be chosen by looking into the lifestyle of the person. The budget will be the determining factor of the type of cut that you can opt for. Every cut is going to have its own gleam and an engagement ring must showcase the type of personality the person who is wearing it is having. The cut off the diamond ring is what makes the entire concept unique.