Have you found your dream home, and now need a home loan to pay for it? Or perhaps you’re checking out what home loans are available and what you can afford before you start to look for a property? Perhaps you want to refinance your existing home with a better deal. Whatever stage you’re at, we have lots of home loans from a large number of lenders for you to compare here at Finty.
Home loan lenders
Traditional home loan lenders include the 'Big Four' banks and other large banks, credit unions and building societies. These large organisations have lots of employees, physical branches and resulting expenses to cover, and these costs are built into their interest rates and ongoing fees.
But the options for a current home loan are much wider than this. There's a long list of non-bank lenders looking for your business, which makes the market more competitive and rates lower. Borrowers who have not had any success with home loans from traditional sources could benefit from considering these alternative options for home buying, many of which are featured on this page. They tend to be lean, cutting-edge enterprises, with fewer overhead expenses to cover and lower rates as a result. And non-bank lenders are still governed by strict regulations to protect the consumer.
Home loan brokers
Mortgage brokers make a living by selling their expertise on the subject of home loans. They're good at assessing your financial situation based on what you tell them and your credit report to find what's available in the loan market, and can save you time and hassle if you don't want to do the research yourself. However, you can now cut out the middleman by comparing all your loan options online, where many lenders are competing for your business and can see each other's rates. This high level of competition makes online lenders' rates even lower than they would be otherwise.
Commissions paid by either the borrower or the lender are the mortgage brokers' income source. Even if you are not paying fees directly, it means that the lender will have a further cost built into the conditions and rates you are being offered via a broker. And your broker may be limited to only a few lenders, or earn higher commissions for recommending particular loans. This can limit or influence your choice of loan.
Finty has to make a living too, of course, so we receive a fee from the lender for presenting your loan options to you and helping you to apply. But the fee we receive is much less than a mortgage broker's fee. The end result is that if you are prepared to use Finty to make well-informed loan comparisons, you can potentially save a lot of money.
Government assistance for home loan borrowers
The federal government and various state governments have come up with a range of schemes to help borrowers buy their first home:
- First Home Loan Deposit Scheme (FHLDS): Under this new program, the federal government will guarantee up to 10,000 low deposit home loans every year. This will allow borrowers to avoid paying Lender's Mortgage Insurance (LMI) if they can't, or don't wish to, ask a family member to act as guarantor for part of their home loan. Details are available at the National Housing and Investment Corporation.
- First Home Owner Grant (FHOG): Depending on where you live and whether you are buying a newly-built or existing home, you may be able to apply for a first-home-buyer grant of between $10,000 and $16,000, offered by various state and territory governments. If your application is successful you can add the grant to your existing savings so that you can meet the lender's required deposit amount. Check your state's details at firsthome.gov.au.
- First Home Super Saver Scheme (FHSSS): This allows first home buyers to save a deposit through their superannuation, by making up to $15,000 of tax-deductible voluntary super contributions per year, with a maximum amount of $30,000 personal contributions plus attributed earnings. See the ATO's First home super saver scheme page for details.
- Stamp duty concessions: Some states have concessions, for first home owners, on the stamp duty payable on property transfer.
- LMI duty concessions: There is stamp duty built into the cost of LMI, and again, there may be a concession on this duty for first-time buyers in your area. Check with your state or territory Revenue Office or Treasury Department to find out what's available in the way of both kinds of duty concessions.