Get Help With Home Loans

Whether you're a first-time homebuyer, looking to refinance, or interested in investing, our local Bell Partners Finance mortgage brokers are here to provide expert advice and guidance throughout the entire process.

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Do you need help making sense of it all?

How long does it get take to get approved for a home loan?

This depends on the lender and your circumstances. Some lenders will be able to approve a straightforward application in a matter of days, where other lenders, or for more complex applications, this can take weeks.

How much deposit is needed for a home loan?

Generally, the minimum deposit will be 5% of the purchase price, however there are more options and better rates if you have a 20% deposit. If you have equity in another property, you may be able to use that to reduce the required cash deposit.

How is the maximum amount I can borrow calculated?

All lenders have their own calculators and formulas for determining the most you can borrow with them. These calculations consider your income, other liabilities, and other household expenses. Your maximum loan amount can vary greatly between lenders.

What is the difference between a fixed rate and variable rate home loan?

With a fixed rate home loan, the interest rate payable is locked in for a period, generally one to five years. A fixed rate provides certainty of repayment and can protect against rising interest rates. A variable rate home loan can increase or decrease during the term of your loan. With a variable rate loan, you will benefit from lower repayments when interest rates fall.

What documents are needed to apply for a home loan?

The most common types of documents you will need to provide include identification; income documents such as payslips, financials, and tax returns; and statements for existing loans and bank accounts. These are the basic documents, and there will be other documents you will need based on your individual situation.

Should I get a home loan pre-approval?

You should get a home loan pre-approval if you’re looking to purchase within the next three months. A pre-approval helps identify any potential issues, confirms your maximum budget, and saves time getting your full approval once you find a property.

How long does a home loan pre-approval last for?

Home loan pre-approvals generally last for 90 days. You may be required to provide up to date documentation once you locate a property and go for full approval.

Can my home loan get declined if I already have a pre-approval?

Yes. A pre-approval comes with conditions that must be met to reach formal approval of your loan. If these conditions are not met, or your circumstance change, your loan may not be formally approved. Pre-approvals may also not be honoured if the lenders policies change.

What costs are associated with a home loan?

The most common costs associated with a home loan are lender fees, which include application and establishment fees, valuation fees, and lender legal costs. There are also government fees for the registration of your mortgage, and finally lenders mortgage insurance, or LMI. LMI might be payable where you are borrowing more than 80% of the property value. You will also need to allow room in your budget for property purchase costs, such as stamp duty and conveyancing costs.

How does my income and employment history affect my ability to get a home loan?

Your income will determine how much you can borrow, and your employment history will impact how a lender views the risk of lending to you. A higher income and a more stable employment history will give you more options.

Are there any first home buyer programs or incentives available?

There are currently several programs and incentives available, which vary depending on where you live and what you are purchasing. As these do change regularly, it is important to check at the time of application which incentives are available and if you qualify.

What factors determine the interest rate I will be offered on a home loan?

The key factors which will determine your interest rate are the loan amount, your loan to value ratio, your income verification method if self-employed, if the property is to live in or rent out, if you elect for principal and interest or interest only repayments, and your credit score and history.

What is mortgage insurance and when is it required?

Mortgage insurance covers the risk if you were unable to meet your repayments and the lender was forced to sell your property, that the sale price of the property less costs would not cover the amount you owe. This insurance covers the difference between what you owed, less the proceeds from the sale. It’s worth noting that while this insurance premium is paid by the borrower, it protects only the lender. The mortgage insurer will still pursue you to recover any shortfall they had to pay to the lender.

Can I pay off my loan early without any penalties?

Government regulations prevent lenders from charging penalties for paying off your loan early. However, you should be aware that they are allowed to charge a fee for preparing the discharge of your loan in line with the costs incurred by the lender in doing so. For most lenders and loan types, this is under $500. The exception to this is for loans discharged during a fixed rate term, where the bank will incur a loss of income based on the early repayment of your loan. This will depend on the prevailing interest rates and cost of funds at the time and can be between nothing and tens of thousands of dollars. It is important to get an indicative break cost for your fixed rate loan at that time.