Frequently Asked Questions

We are your ‘ally’ through the maze of borrowing options and the buying process. Our mortgage brokers are here to answer any questions you may have.

What is the role of a mortgage broker?

A mortgage broker helps people find the best mortgage loan for their needs by researching different lenders and rates, gathering financial information, and matching borrowers with suitable lenders. They basically act as the middleman between borrowers and lenders to help people get the best deal on their mortgage.

Some of the key responsibilities of a mortgage broker include gathering financial information from borrowers, researching and comparing lenders and loan options, helping borrowers choose the best loan product for their needs, and assisting with the application and approval process. The ultimate goal of a mortgage broker is to help borrowers find the best possible mortgage loan to meet their financial goals and needs.

Is it expensive to use a mortgage broker?

Many mortgage brokers do not charge a fee to borrowers. Instead, they receive a commission from the lender for originating the loan. This commission is typically a percentage of the loan amount, and it is paid by the lender, not the borrower.

If a fee is required, the cost of using a mortgage broker can vary depending on the broker and the specific loan product being offered. In some cases, mortgage brokers may charge a fee directly to the borrower for their services. This fee can be a fixed dollar amount or a percentage of the loan amount, and it can range from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.

It’s important for borrowers to understand the fee structure of their mortgage broker before agreeing to work with them.

What is the benefit of using a mortgage broker?

Here are several benefits to using a mortgage broker when looking for a home loan. Here are some of the key benefits:
  1. Access to a wide range of lenders: A mortgage broker has access to a broad network of lenders, including major banks, credit unions, and non-bank lenders. This means that they can help borrowers find a loan that fits their specific needs, even if they have unique or complex financial situations.

  2. Expert guidance: A mortgage broker is a licensed professional with specialized knowledge of the home loan industry. They can provide expert guidance to help borrowers understand their options and make informed decisions.

  3. Time-saving: Shopping around for the best mortgage loan can be time-consuming and overwhelming, especially for first-time homebuyers. A mortgage broker can save borrowers time by doing the legwork for them, researching and comparing lenders and loan products to find the best options.

  4. Negotiating power: A mortgage broker can negotiate with lenders on behalf of the borrower to help them secure a better interest rate or loan terms.

  5. Personalised service: A mortgage broker works one-on-one with the borrower to understand their unique needs and financial situation. This personalised service can help borrowers feel more confident and comfortable throughout the home loan process.

Don’t you just recommend the lender who pays you the most commission?

Absolutely not! There is legislation in our industry, called the National Consumer Credit Protection Act or NCCP, that is designed to protect consumers and ensure ethical and professional standards in the finance industry. we tell you upfront what commission we will be getting from the bank. Our job, our only job, is to find the best loan for your needs and serviceability.

How much can I borrow?

This will depend on your income and employment history, how much you have saved for a deposit and what your current expenses are. Give us a call and we can discuss your options in more details.

Why should I use a mortgage broker if I can go with a bank?

When we talk about a ‘loan product’ we are referring to the thousands of options that are currently available for you for your loan. Each bank (or lender) has loads of different loan options – low doc, package loans, re-draw facilities, plant and equipment loans, fixed, interest only, interested in advance, variable, introductory variable… the issue you face as a consumer is ‘Which loan is right for me?’ And that is where a mortgage broker comes in. If you go direct to the bank, you will only be offered the loan options available through that one lender. As your mortgage broker, we do all the leg work for you. We are across many lenders and all of their loan products and our sole purpose is to find the right loan for your needs.

Do banks allow “borrowers of convenience”, where a third party can be brought on as a co-borrower to assist with loan affordability?

If the relationship between the borrowers is not spousal, then most banks won’t allow a third party to be brought onto the loan to assist with serviceability, if they are not a joint owner in the property.

These requirements are the same for parents and children.

Most banks would require each party have at least a 20% ownership share in the property in order for their income to be used to assist with serviceability.

We have access to one lender who on a case by case basis will allow a 1% ownership share, which is great if the third party is worried about land tax or future capital gains implications.

I have loans in my company name. Will a lender need to factor these in when determining my borrowing capacity?

Most lenders will factor in all loans in your company (including mortgages, commercial hire purchase, leases, credit cards) when they are calculating your personal borrowing capacity, given you are liable to make those repayments.

Some banks are more flexible and make the assumption that any debts in the company name are being managed by the companies cash flow, and therefor will exclude them from your personal assessment. This can greatly improve your borrowing capacity.

Let us know if you need more information.

My parents wish to sell me their house at below market, is there a bank that will use the higher valuation rather than the contract price in this circumstance?

Yes there is at least one bank who will do this. The sale must be to an immediate family member and a letter must be provided stating that the equity is being gifted.

I need to borrow against my home to pay ATO/tax debt. Is there a bank that can help me?

Most major lenders are unwilling to lend against a residential property for the purposes of paying tax debt. But we do have access to a couple of lenders who are accepting of this purpose, and can provide the finance at very competitive interest rates.

I’m looking to build two or three houses/townhouses on my current property, can you assist with funding the project?

We have relationships with a number of lenders that can provide construction lending to build two or three units on one title at standard home loan rates and fees, so you can avoid paying the high costs which are associated with development/private funding. Each scenario is assessed on its merits, but we are more than happy to talk through your project to see where we can place it to get the most competitive and suitable option.

What is the maximum Loan to Value Ratio (LVR) on Community title properties?

Many banks will treat community titles the same as normal strata titled properties, particularly for NSW and SA.  This means they will allow loans to 80% without Mortgage insurance or even 95% with Mortgage Insurance.

Can I borrow to purchase a property under my Self-Managed Super Fund?

Yes, you can definitely borrow in your Self-Managed Super Fund (SMSF). There are a wide range of Lenders for residential & commercial investment property purchases. It is just a matter of getting the right advice so that you can choose the most appropriate product to suite your investment needs. We would be more than happy to assist.

Can I borrow in my Self-Managed Super Fund to purchase Shares?

Yes you can. You can take out a standard SMSF mortgage in your SMSF to purchase any of the top 200 publicly listed shares. You can also borrow to purchase selected managed funds.

I need more than one Offset Account against my home loan... is it possible?

Yes it is. We have a number of lenders that can provide more than one offset account against a single loan account. This can be great for self employed borrowers who need to set aside funds to tax payments, and have that money working for them in the meantime.

Is it possible to have an Offset Account against a fixed rate loan?

Yes it is. We have a number of lenders that can provide the flexibility of having an offset account against a fixed rate loan. Its great to have the certainty that a fixed rate loan brings, plus the flexibility to reduce the interest paid with funds sitting in the offset account.

I am an Australian citizen but currently work and reside overseas. Can I borrow to purchase a property in Australia for investment purposes or alternatively to live in as an owner occupier if I return to Australia?

Yes you can borrow to purchase a property in Australia while working overseas.

The appropriate lender for your loan request will be determined by what currency you are being paid in, which country you are working in and whether you are self employed or salaried. Generally you can borrow up to a maximum of 80% of purchase price on this type of loan request.

I'm a director of a large number of companies, do I need to provide tax returns for all the companies to prove my income?

Whilst normally a lender would require to review the financial statements and tax returns for all business entities you are a director of, we do have a method to stream line the documents involved by having your accountant provide a declaration which reflects your overall financial positions.

Interest rates and fee’s will be competitive with full documentation applications.

I'm looking to expand my business, is it possible to get a business loan based on future business income?

Yes, if you have property to secure the loan it can be possible with some lenders to arrange a loan based on the income that will come from your business expansion. For example, if you already have a retail shop and want to open a second retails shop the bank may take into account the potential income form both shops.

My loan has been declined. What can I do?

Yes, even though your application may not have fit the credit policy of bank you applied to, we have many lenders on our panel each with their own credit policy we you may be a perfect fit. As finance brokers, we are experts in only recommending lenders and loan products to you that meet your individual requirements.

My bank won't lend me the amount I need, what can I do?

Yes, even though your lenders credit policy may limit your borrowing capacity to a certain amount, each lender has their own method for calculating what you can borrow. As credit advisors, we are experts in only recommending lenders and loan products to you that meet your individual requirements.

The valuation of the property i bought came back low. Is there anything I can do?

Yes. Whilst in most cases a bank will have to accept the first valuation they order and not allow a second valuation to be used, we can often argue on your behalf directly with the valuer if we feel they have underestimated the property valuation.

How do I apply for a home loan?

Easy, simply call us on  03 9854 3500 and speak with one of our credit advisors. They will be able to talk you through your borrowing capacity, how to correctly structure your loan, suitable loan products, the documents needed to support your loan application, and the entire process. We do this every day, and we do it well.

I am a first home buyer with limited savings, what sort of assistance can my parents provide?

Guarantor Support allows others to help you by mortgaging their own property as additional security for your home loan. This may allow you to borrow more or avoid paying mortgage insurance if you do not have sufficient security yourself.

How long do I hae to stay as guarantor on my children's loan?

Once the loan has been reduced by the amount of the family guarantee, the Guarantor may wish to be released from their obligation. This can be done in a combination of ways:

  • Via paying down the loan
  • an increase in property value which reduces the Loan to Value ration (LVR)

I need an overdraft for my business, is that something you can help me with?

Yes, there are a number of ways we can structure a loan facility to help with the day to day operation from your business. We work closely with a select group of Business Bankers from a number of lenders, and can match you up with the group we feel has the most suitable products and policy for your needs

Can a person other than a parent or close relative provide guarantees to loan applications?

Yes,  there are some lenders who will allow guarantors to not be personally related to applicants.

With most lenders, the guarantor can be a parent, child, de facto/spouse, company, Aunt or Uncle, or Parent-in-law of the borrower, but with one or two lenders even a friend can provide the guarantee.

Whenever a guarantee is required, its important for the guarantor to considerer obtaining independent legal advice. It may also be a requirement of the lender.

The most common type of guarantee at the moment is a security guarantee, where the guarantor provides their property as an additional security for the bank, often secured by a first or second mortgage. This is commonly done to avoid the borrower incurring lenders mortgage insurance (LMI).

Less common today are income support guarantee’s. The borrower must normally show their income is sufficient to cover the loan against their property, plus the second loan secured against the guarantors property.

When providing security guarantees, can the guarantor keep their property with their existing bank if it is not the same as the bank who is issuing the loan?

Yes, there are banks who will take second mortgage on the guarantor security property so there is no requirement to change loans or bank.

My builder says the building contract will be a Split Contract. Can you help me structure my finances with this type of contract?

Yes we can! We understand the ins and outs of all types of building contracts, including split contracts where your funds are only required at the final two stages of the build.

Are there any alternatives to an offset account?

Whist an offset account is a unique product, some of the benefits of an offset account can be mimicked in other products. One of the main features of an offset account is the ability to reduce the interest charged by the bank if you have funds sitting in the offset account. Another option is by placing your extra funds directly into the loan account, and because interest is charged based on the account balance, the interest cost will drop. If you are making principle and interest repayments, your repayment amount will remain the same, but a bigger portion of you repayment will go towards paying the principle balance of the loan. If you are making interest only repayments, you repayments will decrease as those repayments are based on the loan balance (this is similar to a line of credit product also). By using the redraw feature of a loan instead of an offset account, you can also save the ongoing fees which are commonly linked to offset accounts.

Is it worth paying extra fees for an offset account?

A simple way to calculate is to work out if the savings it will bring you each year will cover the ongoing fees. Here’s a simple calculation:

  • Annual fee for offset account (or loan package fee) = A
  • Home loan interest rate = I
  • A ÷ I = the average amount of money you need to have in your offset account to save the cost of the annual fee

Eg. $350 annual fee ÷ 5% home loan interest rate = $7,000 on average you need to have in your offset account to save $350 annually

Can we borrow if it's a community title?

Yes you can, and we have lenders who will be able to provide loan up to 95% of the property value.

What do I do if my loan application has been declined?

Being declined by a lender isn’t a great feeling, but that doesn’t mean every lender will feel the same way. Each bank has slightly different policy, so where you may not be the right fit for one lender, there may be others where you will meet all requirements. We are able to look at your complete situation and advise of which lenders policy you have the best chance to meeting all the requirements.

Why was I declined by lenders mortgage insurance?

When a loan needs to be approved for Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI), its normally assessed under a stricter set of rules compared to the banks requirements. Common reason’s an application will be declined by a Mortgage Insurer are a poor credit report, the income serviceability is too tight for loan amount requested, your employment history is unsatisfactory, security property is unacceptable.

Whatever the reason for your decline, it is still worth giving us a call so we can investigate whether you should meet the requirements for one of the other mortgage insurers. It’s important to know that there are two mortgage insurers who insurer the majority of banks in Australia, so if you are declined by one Mortgage Insurer, its important that you don’t apply to a lender who uses the same Mortgage Insurer.

We can assist with this selection process.

I am a self-employed non-resident, is there a bank that will lend to me for property purchases in Australia?

Yes, there are some banks that will do finance for Self-employed non-residents.

Can I borrow funds to purchase a car if I've set up a new business?

Yes, it may be possible to secure a finance approval if you have worked in the same industry or have moved form salaried employee to self-employed with your own ABN.

Can I finance the purchase of a car if I'm still under probation with my employer?

Yes, it may be possible to secure finance approval if you are still under probation.  If you have held a similar position in the past or receive a vehicle allowance, finance may be approved.

Should I payout my car finance contract earlier or keep it going?

This depends on what the exit clause of your contract and the cost of penalties and termination fees which apply. It may be best to hold onto the contract for a little while or it may be the right time to terminate.

How do I know if my car usage is predominately business use or personal use?

Do you use your car to visit clients, attend appointments?  Do you receive a car allowance?  Have you claimed vehicle usage in the past?  All these factors will assist in determining business use percentage.

I've signed a Contract of Sale to purchase a car. Can I change my mind? What are my options if I pull out?

This depends on what the exit clause of your contract and any deposit you have paid.  It will also depend on the reaction of the dealership; they often may agree to waive the arrangement if an alternative vehicle is purchased.

Are there any banks that only require three months loan statements for refinances?

Yes, there are banks that will do refinances using only three months loan statements.

I am not in your area, can we still work together?

Sure thing! We are mobile brokers so we can come to you, plus most of the communication can be done over phone and email.

What does a mortgage broker do?

Mortgage brokers are professionals in the home loan industry. They work with you to determine your borrowing needs and how much you can borrow. Brokers help ensure you don’t take out a loan that is too big for you. Professional Mortgage Brokers only focus on loans. If you have a toothache, you go to the dentist not a florist. If your car is broken you take it to a mechanic not a librarian. You go to someone trained to help you with your specific need. It’s the same when you need a loan. Brokers have access to a wide variety of loans. This means your broker can find a loan that is just right for you.

Do you charge fees for home and investment loans?

Normally we do not need to charge a fee. Brokers get paid commission by the bank for bringing new business to them, and this does not impact your rate or level of service you receive.

For some complex transactions, we may need to charge a fee for our services. We will disclose this fee upfront to you so you know what you will be up for if you engage in our services.


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