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More options for low deposit Home Loans

Posted by Tamara McDowell on August 24, 2010

For potential property buyers with only a small deposit, the news on the home loan front keeps getting better.

After announcements earlier in the week from a handful of lenders that low deposit (95%) home loans were back on the agenda, more lenders have added low deposit products back into their home loan suites.

First home buyers often find low deposit home loans useful, particularly as the time taken to save a deposit has blown out in recent years.

Conditions do differ between lenders, but there may also be the option of capitalizing your Lenders Mortgage Insurance, effectively taking your borrowings to 97%, again something that will benefit first home buyers in particular. Check with your mortgage broker for details.

Despite the return of the low deposit loan, it is unlikely that no deposit home loans will be revived, in part due to bank and lenders not having the appetite for risk, and in part due to new legislation for the industry requiring more in-depth investigation into a borrower’s ability to repay a loan.

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Posted in (LMI) Lenders Mortgage Insurance, Bank & Lender News, First Home Owners, Loans, Mortgage Broker Service | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

RBA leave Cash Rate Unchanged

Posted by Tamara McDowell on July 8, 2010

The RBA decided to leave the official cash rate unchanged this month at 4.5 per cent, citing volatile financial markets caused by problems in Europe as the main reason.

It’s the second month in a row the RBA has kept rates on hold. Governor Glenn Stevens hinted that the next rate movement may not be for a few months to come.

“The current setting of monetary policy is resulting in interest rates to borrowers around their average levels of the past decade. Pending further information about international and local conditions for demand and prices, the Board views this setting of monetary policy as appropriate,” he said.

The full statement can be viewed here.

The decision by the RBA to keep official rates at 4.5 per cent is welcome news for mortgage holders.

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Shop Around

Posted by Tamara McDowell on June 19, 2010

Borrowers should be aware that the interest rates on home loans can vary significantly between home loan lenders, financial research company InfoChoice has said.

And mortgage brokers agree with the sentiment, saying that fantastic savings can be made on standard variable home loan rates, fixed home loan rates and many other types of home loans if you just know where to look.

In many cases, the difference between interest rates available can vary by half a per cent, providing borrowers with the possibility of making significant savings over the life of their loan.

Your borrowing capacity, or how much you can borrow from a particular lender, will also vary between lenders so it’s often a case of finding the right mix of borrowing capacity and interest rates, and the home loan features you require.

A good mortgage broker is an ideal tool for a borrower to use to determine the right home loan lender and product, with most mortgage brokers having access to a range of major banks and other secure home loan lenders.

Source: Sydney Morning Herald

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RBA says No Housing Crisis Here

Posted by Tamara McDowell on June 9, 2010

Speaking on recent developments in the housing market the RBA’s Head of Financial Stability, Luci Ellis recently stated that any housing collapse like that seen in the US at the start of the global financial crisis is unlikely to occur in Australia.

Ellis notes that if the current benign picture of the financing of the housing market is to continue it is crucial that lending standards in the mortgage market remain prudent.

“Past experience has clearly shown that in the long run, you don’t improve housing affordability by easing lending standards. That just gets capitalised in the price.

“In fact, easing mortgage lending standards too far can be outright damaging to long-run affordability. This has been amply demonstrated in the recent United States housing meltdown,” Ellis said.

In Australia, lending standards never eased that far, and conditions didn’t get that grim.

Ellis notes that first-home buyers have long faced greater risk than more established home owners who have more equity in their homes. She states that there appears to have not been a drop in lending standards to first-time buyers, even when the First Home Owners Boost was in effect.

“Indeed, across the mortgage market as a whole, lending standards are a little tighter than they were a couple of years ago,” says Ellis.

In summary Ellis said that the global economic slump may still have a way to go and with consumer confidence still low financial conditions could remain tight for several years.

Mortgage holders should expect then, that current lending criteria will remain in force – which generally means borrowers will be required to provide a minimum deposit of  5 per cent as well as provide evidence that genuine savings forms part of that deposit.

Borrowers who require assistance finding a home loan, or who are looking for a low deposit option, should talk to a good mortgage broker for assistance.

Posted in Bank & Lender News, House Prices, Interest Rates, Loans, Mortgage Broker Service, Real Estate News | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

RBA to hold rates at 4.5%

Posted by Tamara McDowell on May 19, 2010

Minutes from the last Reserve Bank meeting showed that, while the decision to increase the cash rate from 4.25% to 4.5% was pretty much cut and dry, the central bank will keep rates at this level as it evaluates the impact of the six rises in seven months.

“The decision to raise rates followed a material upgrade to the Bank’s economic and inflation forecasts and so reflected the RBA’s desire to head off the inflationary impact of Australia’s commodity boom mark II,” said ANZ economist Katie Dean.

“ The minutes show that at the time of the May policy meeting, the bank regarded the problems in Greece as predominantly European issues that were having little impact on Australia. However, as the contagion has spread the RBA is mindful that Europe’s problems could turn into Australia’s problems.

“Since the May policy meeting we have seen further strong data out of China but also a notable rise in global risk premia from European sovereign debt issues,” Dean said.

“The latter should be more than enough to keep the RBA on the sidelines for now.”

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Using a Mortgage Broker

Posted by Tamara McDowell on May 15, 2010

 Instead of you trailing from lender to lender, making endless phone calls or trawling the internet, a mortgage broker can do it all for you.

 If you choose the go-it-alone route, you might be lucky to compare three or four different products. Mortgage brokers can compare hundreds and help you get the right home loan!

A good mortgage broker will also help you to understand the various deals that are on offer, explaining all the features and details that might make a big difference to your repayments.

And what’s more, your mortgage broker will lodge your application (in many cases electronically, saving time) and follow it through with the lender – so you don’t have to!

Your broker is the single point of contact for you throughout the process.

 Using a mortgage broker can result in substantial savings in time and money for borrowers!

Posted in First Home Owners, Investors, Loans, Mortgage Broker Service | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Borrowing Capacity

Posted by Tamara McDowell on May 14, 2010

Your borrowing capacity is something you need to know before you commence your property search as it tells you how much you can spend on your new home and where you can afford to live. Many borrowers go a step further and pre-approve their loan prior to commencing their property search to confirm how much they can borrow.

Your maximum borrowing capacity will vary from lender to lender because lenders use different methods of assessment and different lending criteria. Your personal circumstances and your income will also play a crucial role on the amount that you will be able to borrow.

How do lenders assess my borrowing capacity?

A lender will typically review all your income sources and expenditure, add a margin, and then calculate your uncommitted monthly income. This is the most important factor to most lenders. The greater it is, the larger your borrowing capacity will be.

Basic criteria used to determine how much you can borrow may include:

  • Loan to Value Ratio
  • Income and types of income, e.g. casual, contract, full-time
  • Other loans
  • Credit card limits
  • Loan terms
  • Number of dependents and their situation
  • Type of Loan
  • Tax rates
  • Rental income
  • General living expenses, and
  • Existing asset position, including the size of your deposit.

They may also look at any property currently or previously owned and the type of property you are looking at (eg. house, apartment).

Tips for increasing your borrowing capacity

You may be able to increase your borrowing capacity by employing one or more of the following measures:

  • Pay off outstanding term debts (eg. personal loans)
  • Pay off and close any credit card, overdraft or line of credit facilities
  • Consider reducing the limit of any facility you maintain
  • Work out and stick to a budget to improve your deposit and savings history

Summary: Your borrowing capacity is an indication of how much you can borrow to purchase property. There are a number of different factors involved in calculating your borrowing capacity

If you would like a guideline assessment of your borrowing capacity, a more detailed assessment of your situation or to find the loan that is in your best interest, you can drop me an email tmcdowell@beyondtomorrowfinance.com.au or give me a call on 0430 722 092….I am happy to help!

Posted in First Home Owners, Investors, Loans, Mortgage Broker Service | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Major banks pass on rate rise

Posted by Tamara McDowell on May 5, 2010

All four of the nation’s biggest banks passed along the rate rise yesterday following the Reserve Bank’s decision to push rates up by 25 basis points.

It’s the RBA’s sixth increase in eight months, bringing the official cash rate to 4.5%.

Treasurer Wayne Swan said it was “unfortunately one of the difficult consequences of an economy recovering better than other advanced economies”.

CBA was the first the react to the RBA’s decision announcing its own change to interest rates within minutes of the announcement. But ANZ, NAB and Westpac were not far behind. The banks also passed on the full rate rise to their high-interest deposits accounts.

The changes will bring Westpac’s variable loan to 7.51%, while ANZ and CBA’s variable home loan sits at 7.41% and 7.36% respectively. NAB’s variable rate product is the lowest at 7.24%.

Repayments will increase by another $48 per month on an average $300,000 mortgage.

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Reserve Bank Lifts Interest Rate

Posted by Tamara McDowell on May 4, 2010

Statement by Glenn Stevens, Governor: Monetary Policy Decision

 At its meeting today, the Board decided to raise the cash rate by 25 basis points to 4.5 per cent, effective 5 May 2010.

The full statement can be viewed at: RBA Media Release

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Yet another rate rise is on the cards

Posted by Tamara McDowell on May 3, 2010

With Australia’s economic indicators continuing to point to strong growth, the Reserve Bank may have little choice but to increase the cash rate by another 25 basis points when it meets tomorrow.

Producer and consumer prices, which indicate inflation, both came in above market expectations in the first quarter of the year. Core prices increased by 3.1% in annual terms – placing them outside the RBA’s 2-3% range.

“While recent RBA commentary has suggested a more gradual monetary adjustment process from this point, we think the risk to inflation is too great and that the RBA will need to raise the cash rate for a third-consecutive month,” ANZ research analyst Andrew Dowman said.

AMP Capital’s chief economist Shane Oliver agrees, saying that the combination of strong inflationary pressure and continued economic growth will put pressure on the central bank to tighten monetary policy.

“The pick-up in the quarterly pace of underlying inflation in the March quarter coming at a time when economic growth has returned to trend, national income is likely to receive a strong boost from higher iron ore and coal prices and house prices are booming is likely to drive the RBA to continue the process of raising interest rates back to longer term average levels,” Oliver said. “As a result we expect another 0.25% hike in the cash rate taking it to 4.5%.”

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Will RBA put the brake on rate hikes?

Posted by Tamara McDowell on April 28, 2010

Leading economists are predicting an extended pause on official interest rate rises as inflation pressures ease across the Australian economy.

An AAP survey of financial market economists shows that inflation is expected to rise just 0.7% for the quarter, putting the annual figure at 3%. This would be inside the RBA’s target band and well down from the peak of 4.7% 18 months ago.

Governor Glenn Stevens indicated that tomorrow’s release of the March quarter CPI figure would have a significant impact on the bank’s decisions over the next three months.

Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Glenn Stevens has told a business forum that inflation is now close to target and interest rates were falling back to normal levels.

“The Reserve Bank has moved early to raise the cash rate to levels that deliver interest rates for borrowers and depositors more like those that have been the average experience over the past 10 to 12 years,” Mr Stevens said in Toowoomba last week.

With interest rates now close to average, this may be a sign interest rate rises will cease, at least for now.

Access Economics warned, however, that inflation could build to 3.2% in 2011, driven by business activity and wage growth.

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How your Credit Report affects YOU..

Posted by Tamara McDowell on March 19, 2010

If  you want a mortgage, a personal loan, a credit card, a business loan, interest free credit for furniture, or any kind of credit, your credit report usually has to be reasonable.

An impaired credit report can affect your ability to purchase a house, to obtain any new credit cards, to increase limits on existing credit cards, to obtain an overdraft from your bank or most other kinds of credit facilities.

When you start to see early warning signs of debt beginning to become hard to manage..take steps to immediately address your debt problems and protect your credit report. Taking early action will keep your credit report clean and help you in your success when applying for future credit.As soon as you begin to overextend yourself and you find yourself defaulting on payments you are heading to a situation where you are in danger of ruining your credit report.

This will limit the number of credit vehicles available to you. Most banks will not consider a loan and/or issue a credit card. Only the lenders that specialise in lending to higher risk clients will be in a position to lend you money. Those loans will be at above average interest rates to compensate for your perceived higher risk.

These higher rates put you at more risk to default on a loan as your loan will be much more expensive than the average person’s. This illustrates how having a bad credit report can affect you in the long term. It makes it easier for you to get in financial trouble. 

Your credit report is an indicator of your ability to manage money. As well as containing negative information it should also contain positive information about previous credit applications. This information supports any application you make in the future and should help you secure an approval any time you make an application.

Posted in Loans, Mortgage Broker Service, Your Credit | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Shop around…

Posted by Tamara McDowell on March 3, 2010

Yesterday’s interest rate increase is a reminder to mortgage holders to shop around if they are looking to refinance their home loan, according to the Mortgage and Finance Association of Australia.

“Changes to the official interest rate can present an opportunity to borrowers to get a better deal,” said Phil Naylor, Chief Executive of the Mortgage and Finance Association of Australia (MFAA).

He said all lenders were competing for business and mortgage brokers were best placed to find consumers the right loan from a range of lenders.

“There is considerable potential to save money through refinancing and the best way to shop around is through an MFAA accredited mortgage broker,” said Naylor.

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Interest Rate Announcement!

Posted by Tamara McDowell on March 2, 2010

Having held off raising interest rates in February, the RBA has today, as expected, pushed up the official cash rate by 0.25%

The central bank’s decision means that the official rate will rise to 4%.

The question though remains – will the major banks increase their rates beyond the official increase?

Were they to do so, any justification would be hard for mortgage holders to swallow, given the healthy interim and quarterly profits announced recently by all the major banks as well as the continued thawing of wholesale funding markets.

Making the announcement today, RBA governor Glenn Stevens said that the global economy was growing, and world GDP was expected to rise at close to trend pace in 2010 and 2011.

“The expansion is still hesitant in the major countries…[but] in Asia, where financial sectors are not impaired, growth has continued to be quite strong. The authorities in some countries are now seeking to reduce the degree of stimulus to their economies,” he said.

Stevens said in Australia economic conditions in 2009 were stronger than expected, after a mild downturn a year ago.

“The rate of unemployment appears to have peaked at a much lower level than earlier expected. Labour market data and a range of business surveys suggest growth in the economy may have already been at or close to trend for a few months,” he added.

He also said there were some signs that the process of business sector de-leveraging was moderating, with the pace of decline in business credit lessening and indications that lenders are starting to become more willing to lend to some borrowers.

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Negative Gearing………..

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 27, 2010

About negative gearing

If you’ve got money to invest, an option you may consider is negative gearing.

With correct financial advice and with the selection of the right property, negative gearing can provide great tax advantages. That’s great if you’re thinking about entering the property investment market for the first time or want to increase your investment portfolio.

How do you negative gear a property?

A property is negatively geared when the costs of owning it – interest on the loan, bank charges, maintenance, repairs and capital depreciation – exceed the income it produces.

Put simply, your investment must make a loss before you can claim a tax benefit.

It works not only for property, but also shares and bonds. Read the rest of this entry »

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Equity

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 27, 2010

What is equity?

Equity is the difference between what your home is worth and how much you owe on it.

For example, if your home is worth $300,000 and you owe $100,000, you have $200,000 in equity. Over time, as you reduce the amount you owe on your home or the value of your home grows, your equity increases. It’s that simple.

Using equity to build wealth through property investment

Unlocking the equity in your home can be an effective way to assist in purchasing a rental property to help build your wealth. Residential investment properties can be a popular investment, having the potential to provide investment security, capital growth and rental income. There may also be tax advantages. Negative gearing and depreciation allowances are also popular ways to reduce your tax liability, especially at the end of the financial year. You should consult your financial and taxation advisers before determining if this strategy suits you.

If you haven’t already invested in property, making a start may be easier and more achievable than you think. The key factor is getting the right advice to help ensure you make the right decision about your loan.

What if I’m still paying off my home?

Provided you have substantial equity in your home, you may be able to release funds to start investing sooner. Remember, it’s not just about reducing the amount you owe on your home that increases your equity, if the value of your home has risen since you bought it, your equity is likely to have increased.

What can I use my equity for?

Depending on your financial circumstances, and the advice you receive from your financial advisor, you can use your equity for a wide range of purposes like a new car or renovations. You may choose to create or build an investment portfolio or to enhance your lifestyle. There are many possibilities, it’s really up to you.

By unlocking your equity you may be able to access a whole range of opportunities sooner. If you’ve been putting off that small home renovation or investment strategy until you’ve saved enough capital, unlocking your home equity can allow you to start improving your lifestyle right now.

Posted in Investors, Mortgage Broker Service | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Basic Buying Process

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 27, 2010

Make an offer

If you are buying at an auction, you are required to pay a deposit (usually 10% of the purchase price) immediately.

If you are buying privately, you are usually required to pay a holding deposit (can be anywhere between $1,000, $2,000 and 10% of the purchase price).

Contract of sale/Offer and Acceptance

The Contract of Sale/Offer & Acceptance, prepared by the agent or by the vendor’s (the current owner of the property) solicitor, outlines your offer, the date of settlement and any conditions that must be met before the sale goes ahead. Discuss the Contract of Sale with your solicitor before you sign it. There are two kinds of offers – unconditional and conditional.

Unconditional offers

This is an outright offer to buy the property. You should be 100% sure that this is the property you want and that you have access to the money to buy the property. Once the vendor has accepted your offer, you are legally obliged to go through with the sale.

Conditional offers

A conditional offer is also a binding contract, provided that all your conditions are satisfied. You can only back out now if one or more of your conditions are not met. Conditions may include:

  • subject to valuation – the sale will only go ahead if the valuation is acceptable to both you and your bank.
  • subject to finance – the sale will only go ahead if your bank approves your finance.
  • subject to acceptable title search – the sale will only go ahead if there are no ownership, access or other claims recorded on the property title. Your solicitor/settlement agent will do this for you.
  • subject to an acceptable builder’s or engineer’s report – the sale will only go ahead if you are satisfied that the house, or land it is on, is sound.

You may wish to set other conditions eg subject to certain repairs being carried out, white ant inspection etc. Talk to your solicitor/settlement agent or real estate agent about anything you are unhappy or unsure about. Don’t sign your Contract of Sale/Offer & Acceptance until you are happy with the conditions.

Negotiation, acceptance and deposit

The vendor may accept your offer straight away or may negotiate on the price or other aspects of the sale. The real estate agent will act as the ‘go-between’ until you and the vendor reach a happy medium. If you cannot agree on a price, you can withdraw your offer.  Once both you and the vendor have signed the agreement, it is legally binding.

You will normally be expected to pay your deposit directly to the real estate agent on signing the agreement. It will be placed in a trust account until all conditions have been met.

Finalise loan

The Contract of Sale/Offer & Acceptance will usually state the length of time you have for finance.

It is a good idea to have already had your finance approved in principle/ pre-approved.

If you haven’t, you have two choices – You can go to the Bank/Lender directly or you can use a Mortgage Broker.

If you have obtained a pre-approval  the process should be quick and smooth and you would have already supplied the required documents.

Settlement

The contract of sale/Offer & Acceptance will state the amount of time you have to settle the conditions. When all conditions are met, the offer becomes unconditional, the sale will go ahead and the property will be yours.

How the settlement process works

  • Your solicitor/conveyancer/settlement agent will prepare and arrange for you to sign a transfer of land document. You should ensure that this is done at least two weeks prior to the settlement date. This document will be handed over at settlement to the Lender/Bank. The Lender/Bank will register it at the State/Territory’s Title Office on your behalf. Upon registration, the property will be changed over to your name.
  • Your solicitor/conveyancer/settlement agent will contact the Bank/Lender, the seller’s solicitor/conveyancer/settlement agent and other interested parties to arrange the date, place and time of settlement.
  • Your solicitor/conveyancer/settlement agent should advise you, one week prior to the settlement, of the exact date and time of settlement and the amount of funds that you are required to provide prior to settlement (if applicable). This amount is usually required to be paid by bank cheque one day before settlement.
  • After settlement has taken place the seller’s solicitors/settlement agent will contact the real estate agent that sold you the property and advise them to hand over the keys to the property to you.
  • Your solicitor/settlement agent should contact you and confirm settlement has taken place. They will also send you a statement of adjustment to show you how the funds have been disbursed to the parties involved.

Congratulations!!!  ……….You will have purchased your Home!!!

Posted in First Home Owners, Loans, Mortgage Broker Service | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Pre-Approval of Finance

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 16, 2010

Competition for property can be fierce. Get ahead of the pack with a pre-approved loan.

What is a Pre-Approval?

Sometimes referred to as an  approval in principle, pre-approval is a general indication of how much you’re able to borrow based on the information you provide to your lender.

Although subject to terms and conditions, a pre-approval basically gives you the green light on your home loan even if you’ve not yet decided on a property.

The amount of the pre-approval is usually determined by your ability to meet the loan repayments.

Most pre-approvals are valid for up to three months.

A pre-approval will place you in a stronger negotiating position with most sellers in the market. Read the rest of this entry »

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Basic Lending Terms Explained

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 15, 2010

The following is a list of terms and words (and their meanings) that you may come across when purchasing a home and dealing with lenders. This list is not comprehensive, therefore if you come across any other terms that you do not understand please contact your  Mortgage Consultant.

It is particularly important that before signing you fully understand the terms of any contract, whether it is a purchase contract or loan contract. Once signed and executed it becomes legally binding on you. Read the rest of this entry »

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How Much Can I vs How Much Should I

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 9, 2010

The choices you make when taking out a mortgage have long-lasting implications – so you need to approach borrowing with a healthy attitude.

How much you can borrow and how much you should borrow are two very different things. While your lender should not let you borrow more than you can afford, ultimately the choice is yours – so be careful not to over commit yourself.

When determining your borrowing capability, start by measuring your income against expenses, including your mortgage repayments. A good rule of thumb is that no more than 35 per cent of your gross monthly income should go towards servicing your mortgage.

Lenders use a similar method to work out how much to lend you. As a general rule, the bigger deposit you have and the higher your
income,the more they should be willing to lend.

While your lender will give you a maximum borrowing amount, it’s essential that you determine your own borrowing capacity when searching for your new home.
Ultimately the choice is yours – so be careful not to over commit yourself. Read the rest of this entry »

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3 tips for Saving a deposit

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 9, 2010

Saving for that all important deposit can be tough – but here’s three winning tips to set you on your way to home ownership, fast!

Put your goals in writing:

Setting a financial goal will make it much easier to plan and successfully save. Make a conscious effort to track your expenses so you can see where your money’s going and cut back where you can. Small sacrifices such as taking the bus instead of a taxi or bringing your lunch to work can also go a long way towards helping you save.

Beat the Credit Monster:

Credit card debt, unpaid bills and personal loan repayments can be major setbacks to your saving efforts. As part of your saving strategy get these debts paid off. Start by paying off your debts that have the highest interest rate – typically your credit card. If you can’t pay it off in one lump sum, ensure that you pay more than the minimum monthly repayment. You’ll not only slash your debt, you’ll also have extra funds to channel into other debt commitments or even deposit savings.

Make your savings work for you:

Making cutbacks on your lifestyle is one thing, but putting that money to use is another. Remove the temptation to spend your savings by arranging a set amount to be taken out of your pay each month and put directly into a savings account. Shop around, and seek a high interest rate savings account to get the best returns – many banks now offer an online high interest account.

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3 more reasons to use a Mortgage Broker…

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 9, 2010

WHY USE A MORTGAGE BROKER?

•SAVE TIME – your broker can do the groundwork for you, making it easier to find a loan suited to your needs. Moreover, they’ll manage the application and approval process.

•EXPERT ADVICE – your mortgage broker knows what loans are out there, so you can expect to receive professional advice on the most suitable loan options.

•REDUCE STRESS – your broker can reduce stress by helping you source the most appropriate mortgage as well as keeping you updated along the whole mortgage process.

 

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Hmmmm…..

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 7, 2010

 

OK!…..I can’t do this either!

but…..I am extremely flexible and helpful!

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Loan Options

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 7, 2010

  

When working through your loan options with your mortgage broker there are a number of issues to keep in mind to ensure you’re getting the most appropriate mortgage for your needs.    

Different loan types tend to come with different interest rates. So if your loan has a range of features, such as re-draw, offsets or early repayment facilities, you’ll usually pay a little more in interest.    

Alternatively while a basic loan doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of other products the interest rate is typically lower.    

When assessing which loan best suits your needs, ask your broker to explain how the different features work to assess whether they are worth paying a higher rate for.    

For example if you’re looking to drive your mortgage down quickly or would like flexibility in your repayments it may be worth paying for the features needed to do this most effectively. 

With the possibility of movements in interest rates, some borrowers are choosing to fix their home loan rate – or ‘lock in’ a rate for a set period of time.   If you’re considering this option, it’s important to remember that a fixed interest rate is usually higher than the current  variable rate.  However, if rates are on the rise and you’re concerned they’ll keep going up fixing your rate will ensure consistency in repayments each month.   

 Alternatively a split loan can give you the best of both a fixed-rate and variablerate loan. This means that if rates rise a proportion of your loan will be protected, minimising the impact of higher monthly repayments. If on the other hand rates fall your fixed rate will remain higher and the variable part of the loan will fall.   

  

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Basic Explanation of Interest

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 7, 2010

The rate of interest you’ll pay on your mortgage depends on a combination of factors. This can include the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) cash rate, your lender and the type of loan you have.

Interest rates are normally expressed as a percentage rate over the period of one year.

 An interest rate is the price a borrower pays for the use of money they borrow from a lender.

Basic explanation of Interest.

Interest is a fee paid on borrowed assets. It is the price paid for the use of borrowed money, or, money earned by deposited funds. Assets that are sometimes lent with interest include money, shares, consumer goods through hire purchase, major assets such as aircraft, and even entire factories in finance lease arrangements. The interest is calculated upon the value of the assets in the same manner as upon money.

Interest can be thought of as “rent of money”. When money is deposited in a bank, interest is typically paid to the depositor as a percentage of the amount deposited.

When money is borrowed, interest is typically paid to the lender as a percentage of the amount owed. The percentage of the principal that is paid as a fee over a certain period of time (typically one month or year), is called the interest rate.

Interest is compensation to the lender, and for forgoing other useful investments that could have been made with the loaned asset. These forgone investments are known as the opportunity cost.

Instead of the lender using the assets directly, they are advanced to the borrower. The borrower then enjoys the benefit of using the assets ahead of the effort required to obtain them, while the lender enjoys the benefit of the fee paid by the borrower for the privilege.

The amount lent, or the value of the assets lent, is called the principal. This principal value is held by the borrower on credit.

Interest is therefore the price of credit, not the price of money as it is commonly believed to be.

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Up to $2,000 towards your fees!

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 6, 2010

Home Buyers Assistance Account

The Home Buyers Assistance Account is established under the Real Estate and Business Agents Act 1978 to provide first home buyers with financial support.

 The scheme provides a grant of up to $2,000 for the incidental expenses of first home buyers when they purchase an established or partially built home through a licensed real estate agent for a purchase price of $400,000 or less.   
  
The scheme is funded from interest paid on real estate agents’ trust accounts. The grant can be used for — mortgage registration fees, solicitor and/or settlement agent fees, valuation fees, inspection fees, loan establishment fees, mortgage insurance premiums and lending institution fees associated with lodging the application.
 

Application criteria:

  • applicants must be buying their first home, which is established or partially built (not vacant land, a plan or a ‘house and land’ package);
  • the applicant, spouse or partner of the applicant must not own or have owned any property in the State of Western Australia before (if one of the people the applicant is buying a home with, owns or has owned a home in Western Australia before, then the applicant can apply for a partial grant based on the percentage of their ownership of the home);
  • the applicant must live in the home for at least the first 12 months;
  • the applicant must purchase the home through a licensed real estate agent;
  • the application must be lodged with the Registrar of the Real Estate and Business Agents Supervisory Board no more than 90 days after the date that the offer and acceptance contract to buy the home is accepted (in exceptional circumstances, a short extension of time for lodgement may be granted by the Registrar if reasonable grounds exist);
  • the home loan must be financed through an authorised lending institution (such as a bank, building society or credit union); and
  • the purchase price of the home is $400,000 or less. 

Your mortgage broker can supply the application form…this application cannot be processed until settlement and will need to be applied for by you. Complete form 1 and forward to your Lender along with

  • a complete copy of the signed contract to buy the property (Offer & Acceptance) 
  • a copy of the final settlement statement prepared/provided by your settlement agent. 

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Key Reasons To Review Your Mortgage

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 6, 2010

PAY OFF YOUR MORTGAGE FASTER!

If you’re striving to be mortgage free, faster, there’s a good chance there may be a more appropriate product to meet your needs.
Some mortgage products are designed to motivate borrowers to repay their mortgages quickly, so now is the perfect time to talk to
your mortgage broker and consider whether a new loan will see you on the road to financial freedom – fast!

BETTER INTEREST RATES AND LOWER REPAYMENTS

Rates and mortgage deals are constantly on the move. To make the most of a competitive mortgage market, you might
want to evaluate the loan product you currently have. For example, you may want to go for a lower variable-rate, or lock into a fixed-rate. Break costs can be expensive though, so you’ll need to check that you’ll come out ahead when all costs are considered.

CONSOLIDATE YOUR DEBT

Consolidating your debts, such as credit cards or personal loans, into your home loan can save you thousands of dollars in
interest charges. Rolling your debts into one monthly or fortnightly repayment can also help make juggling your finances a little
easier, while improving your cash flow to boot.

AVOID MONTHLY FEES AND CHARGES

Some lenders charge a monthly service fee – further adding to your debt. Competition between lenders has increased and a number now waive administration fees, so refinancing your home loan with another provider can be a smart move to help cut your mortgage costs.

UNLOCKING EQUITY

As you pay off your mortgage you’ll accumulate equity in your home. As long as you are capable of meeting your loan
repayments, refinancing your mortgage can help you tap into the value that you’ve built up, using it for other purposes such as
purchasing an investment property.

Your life never stands still; and neither should your
mortgage. If change is afoot, it might be time to
search for a more suitable product

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Arranging your Finance

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 6, 2010

Contact your mortgage broker and arrange an appointment 
Organise supporting documents (i.e. pay slips, group certificate, credit card & other relevant documents)
Assess lending capabilities and the options you want with your loan (redraw,extra repayments etc) with your broker, shortlist loan options and determine most appropriate loan from the shortlist. 
Complete loan application with all supporting documents. Your mortgage broker can guide you through this process and submit your application.

 
Obtain pre-approval

NOTE: Finance can be secured before or after you find a property; however borrowers should consider pre-approval so that
they have a true measure of their borrowing capacity before they commit to a purchase. Pre-approved finance is a great bargaining tool when making an offer!

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Home Ownership

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 6, 2010

From the moment you turn the key in the lock and take those first few steps through your new front door, the security of owning your own home is second to none.

But the path to home ownership can be stressful and if not fully prepared it can prove to be time of great confusion, indecision and hard work – especially when it comes to finance. 

I wish you every success in your hunt for the perfect property.

Save time, stress and shoe leather!

Take the leg work out of financing your property through engaging a mortgage broker…………

If you’re buying your first home or investment property – or looking to move to a bigger and better one – speaking to a mortgage broker is a good first step.

A broker will sit down with you, usually in your own home or another location easy for you, and show you the range of loans
available from different lenders. They will then help you narrow them down to a loan that best suits your needs.

A mortgage broker will take the time to understand your needs, discuss your financial circumstances, and identify your loan requirements.

As a first step, they’ll discuss your property goals, factoring in your loan requirements in light of your lifestyle, job, family and
other aspects. They’ll also discuss the type of documents needed to assist you to make a loan application – such as pay slips, tax
returns, and personal bank statements.

Once they have a clear understanding of your financial situation and goals, your broker will be able to advise you on your
home loan options.

Tamara McDowell ~ Mobile Mortgage Broker ~ Licensed Finance Broker #5277

Posted in First Home Owners, Loans, Mortgage Broker Service, New Home Tips | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

3 Reasons Why YOU Should Use a Mortgage Broker?

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 4, 2010

  • YOU pay for a Mortgage Broker whether you use one or go straight to the Bank/Lender.  Yes..most licensed Mortgage Brokers do not charge YOU for their service as they are paid by the Bank/Lender…. however…. Banks/Lenders have already priced a Mortgage Broker service into the interest rate so you should take advantage of what You are already paying for!  Anyone with a loan is paying for a Mortgage Broker – the rate is no different between the brokered loan and the direct loan.

 

  • There are hundreds of home loans offered by dozens of mortgage originators and each loan has up to a dozen or more features. Which one gives YOU the very best results? Every loan is different and so is every home owner. With all the options available, matching home owners with the right loan takes real financial expertise.  A licensed Mortgage Broker has that expertise. 

 

  • You might be surprised to know that each Bank’s lending criteria is different. One Bank might allow a couple to borrow $250,000 and another Bank may allow that same couple to borrow up to $400,000. The difference is enormous. Unless you have an unlimited amount of time on your hands it can be time-consuming running from Bank to Bank to find the institution that offers you the best deal.  A licensed Mortgage Broker will do the legwork for you.

 

 

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How your Credit Report affects YOU

Posted by Tamara McDowell on February 3, 2010

If  you want a mortgage, a personal loan, a credit card, a business loan, interest free credit for furniture, or any kind of credit, your credit report usually has to be reasonable.

An impaired credit report can affect your ability to purchase a house, to obtain any new credit cards, to increase limits on existing credit cards, to obtain an overdraft from your bank or most other kinds of credit facilities.

When you start to see early warning signs of debt beginning to become hard to manage..take steps to immediately address your debt problems and protect your credit report. Taking early action will keep your credit report clean and help you in your success when applying for future credit.As soon as you begin to overextend yourself and you find yourself defaulting on payments you are heading to a situation where you are in danger of ruining your credit report.

This will limit the number of credit vehicles available to you. Most banks will not consider a loan and/or issue a credit card. Only the lenders that specialise in lending to higher risk clients will be in a position to lend you money. Those loans will be at above average interest rates to compensate for your perceived higher risk.

These higher rates put you at more risk to default on a loan as your loan will be much more expensive than the average person’s. This illustrates how having a bad credit report can affect you in the long term. It makes it easier for you to get in financial trouble. 

Your credit report is an indicator of your ability to manage money. As well as containing negative information it should also contain positive information about previous credit applications. This information supports any application you make in the future and should help you secure an approval any time you make an application.

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