Phew ! Here goes:
1) We owed £65k and paid back £410 per month -- this was accepted. Difficult to second guess but the IP wouldnot put forward an obviously unacceptable offer.
2) Selling assets at this stage could be looked at as favouring one creditor over another, which is a "no-no" in the IVA world. If the creditors object they may well ask you to extend the term anyway, during the initial meeting.
3) If it isn't accepted ad drawn, the creditors themselves might suggest amendments at the time, or give reasons for rejection which you could counter with an amended proposal. If completely off the table you might be able to look at a DMP.
4) If both DMP and IVA were rejected you either continue struggling with repayments as per the loan contracts or submit to whatever enforcement creditors wish to use. You could sell assets then, to reduce the most onerous debt. As each debt it repaid you use that repayment amount towards the next most onerpous debt.. and so on. Or, you could pay off "rejectors" to even the playing field and try again in 6 months / a year.
5) As long as we are talking about small assets and not something all creditors would want a share of -- I would think it OK to clear the field a little.
6) HSBC are particularly anti-IVA. They will freeze your account as soon as they get a whiff of trouble. Open a new basic account with a non-creditor bank asap.
7) A modest vehicle should be OK -- and, after all, no car, no work, no IVA payment ! Stepchage should have already talked about this.
8 ) Inheritances are payable, in full, into the IVA up to the value of the total original debt, plus fees and also possible statutory interest at 8% per annum, simple, on the reducing balance. If that figure is met the IVA closes early, but still remains on your credit file for the 6 years from the start date. In my proposal statutory interest was specifically excluded .. so, in the event of an inheritance (as I had elderly parents) the amount required to fully settle was somewhat less. You could ask Stepchange it they could do the same (without putting reasons in the proposal).
9) Equity is looked at around month 54 and, assuming you have the usual clauses, is as you understand it. A few years ago it was practically guaranteed that a remortgage would be impossible. Now, sometimes, it is ... in the future .... who knows? Modern IVA's also have a secured loan option, rather than a full remortgage, if the provider uses the newer version (they do not all do so).
Bear in mind that I am not an IP -- just someone who has had an IVA. I would suggest you put these points to Stepchange as providers do differ in their views and interpretations. Do not let them "gloss over" things such as equity release. When you get the draft proposal, read it very carefully (which I am sure you will.)
My opinions are merely that .. opinions based on experience. Always seek professional advice.
IVA Completed 23rd July 2013 .... C.C. 10th January 2014