02 May 2016
We here at Element Finance are super excited to introduce to you the most recent Mortgage Broking expert to join our team, Leandro de Jesus.
If ever there was someone that made discussing finance and home loans truly an enjoyable experience, that someone is Leandro. His genuine enthusiasm to help each and every one of his clients succeed with their property goals is clear in every instance.
Himself an active property investor, Leandro understands what it can take when it comes to starting or growing your investment portfolio. His first hand experience in the WA property market continues to prove invaluable for his clients.
Focus: Leandro is the guy you want on your side for all things property investment. Living in the City of Joondalup, he has an intimate knowledge of the surrounding suburbs. If its discussing home loan structure, negotiating a personalised deal with your lender or connecting you with other property professionals, he has you covered.
Saving up your deposit is the first step in buying a home and when your bank account balance starts to look good it’s easy to get excited. But it pays to be realistic. Exactly how much money is enough? In this article we take a look at some of the upfront costs involved with buying a home to help you set a proper savings goal before you make your move.
The deposit you contribute towards your mortgage is only part of the funds you need to purchase a property. Many first-time buyers assume that 10% of the purchase price will be enough to cover everything, but unfortunately that isn’t necessarily the case. There are many costs involved in purchasing a property, let’s take a look at other things you need to think about as part of your purchase.
1. Deposit on your mortgage
It used to be possible to borrow nearly 100% of the purchase price of the property, and use your savings to cover the other expenses, but these days that’s usually no longer the case. Most lenders require you to have at least 5% of the purchase price to put towards your mortgage. Depending on the home you want to purchase, the lender may even require you to put 10 – 20% of the purchase price towards your mortgage. Have a chat to us about different lender’s criteria to ensure you know what you can afford.
2. Stamp duty
Stamp duty is a cost that varies from state to state and it is calculated against the price of the property you wish to buy. We can help you calculate approximately what your stamp duty costs will be on the price range of home you’re looking at, so talk to us when you’re planning your budget.
3. Lenders mortgage insurance
Unless you have a deposit of 20% or more to contribute towards your mortgage, the lender who is providing your loan will require you to pay lender’s mortgage insurance (LMI). Unfortunately, the cost of this will also vary. LMI is calculated according to how much deposit you have, how much you intend to borrow and how much the home costs to purchase.
4. Borrowing costs
There are a range of different fees that apply to getting a mortgage. These differ from lender to lender and loan to loan, but generally speaking, you will need to allow for things such as application fees, lender valuation fees and a settlement fee. Some lenders also charge for legal supervision at settlement and document processing. Again, ask us what these costs could be with your chosen lender, and we’ll help you to fit them into your budget.
5. Pest and building inspections
Getting a building and pest inspection usually costs around $400, but this will vary depending on the size of the property. It really is worth the expense because it could cost you a lot of money to fix any problems the property may have after you purchase it. By getting a building and pest inspection before you buy, you’ll know exactly what you’re up against and have the opportunity to choose a different property if it looks like you can’t afford the repairs.
You will need to employ a solicitor or conveyancer to legally transfer ownership of the property you are buying. They will also perform all the property and title searches necessary and take care of the documentation. Conveyancers can also explain sales contracts, take a look at your section 32, auction terms and any other legal elements of purchasing a property so that you fully understand what you’re getting into.
Your lender may require you to take out building insurance on any property you wish to purchase. This is not only an upfront cost, it is ongoing and you’ll need to maintain this cost annually. You have the freedom to shop around amongst the various insurance carriers to get yourself a good price. Once you move in, it is also a good idea to get contents insurance as well. Usually the two can be bundled together so you can save on purchasing them individually.
8. Moving-in costs
Many people get so excited about getting their first home they forget to calculate their moving in costs and include them in their budget. Remember that you may need to hire the services of a removalist to move in your stuff, and that can be expensive! There’s also likely to be items of furniture you’ll need to buy and most people want curtains and blinds at the windows.
You’ll also need to pay to have your utilities connected. These may include telephone, internet, gas and electricity.
9. Contingency funds
Last but not least, it’s important that you have some funds put aside for any unexpected expenses. Of course, it’s difficult for us to predict what these may be, but you never know when you might encounter a problem. Perhaps you’ll have a blocked drain that requires a plumber, or light sockets that don’t work and require an electrician. It’s all part of the fun of owning a home!
Although this may sound daunting, remember, we’re here to help you budget to purchase your property and help to make sure there are no hidden surprises. If you’re getting ready to purchase a home, please don’t hesitate to give us a call for a chat. We’ll help you determine whether you’ve saved enough money to cover your deposit and all your expenses. We can also help you get pre-approval for your home loan so you can get started on searching for your dream home! Please call us today.
The temperature is UP here in Fremantle and Perth so its time to hit the water – in style! This month,Element Finance are giving you AND a friend the chance to get into the Indian Ocean in the most unique way we can find – on a Jet X-treme jet board! For your chance to dive like a dolphin into the deep blue, enter our competition with these 2 easy steps:
1. LIKE the Element Finance Facebook page
2. Visit the Element Finance page and comment on this image with the name of the person you want to fly across the water with.
But hurry, competition closes on 18 January. Winner announced 19 January. For full T&Cs, please email email@example.com
More Jet X-treme action on youTube: https://youtu.be/sizsqhHLk68
07 Dec 2015
A home loan isn’t just a debt, it’s a great financial tool that you can use to build wealth and facilitate your lifestyle. That’s why few people keep their original home loan for the life of the loan – it pays to keep it up to date to meet your needs as circumstances change.
Refinancing your home loan means replacing it with one that better suits your current needs – and it’s something you may consider for a variety of different reasons. Here are the top four reasons why you might consider refinancing your home loan.
1. To save money on your home loan repayments
The top reason why people talk to us about the possibility of refinancing their home loan is because they may now be eligible for a better interest rate. Cutting back on the interest you pay could reduce your repayment amount and save you a considerable amount of money over time.
When you first apply for your home loan, your financial circumstances are one of the factors that influence the home loan interest rate available to you. As your personal situation improves over time, you may be able to refinance to get a better interest rate.
Additionally, you can often get a better interest rate by switching lenders. For example, the big four banks recently made a move to raise interest rates outside of RBA movements. However, not all lenders raised rates at the same time, with many of the smaller lenders keeping their rates between 0.20 and 1 percent lower than the bigger lenders.
If your lender raised your rates recently, now may be a good time to ask us to shop around for a better deal that could save you money.
2. To access your equity
Property investment is currently one of the most popular ways of building wealth for your future. Whilst saving the deposit to purchase a second property may be difficult for many, rapid rises in property values in recent years have provided an opportunity to refinance in order to access some of the equity in their homes to use as a deposit instead.
The equity in your home is calculated by subtracting the amount you owe from the current value of your home. In order to refinance to access your equity, you will need to have your home valued to determine its current value.
Accessing your equity will increase the amount you owe on your original property and increase your mortgage payments. However, if you use the equity to make a property investment, you will have the opportunity to capitalise on home loan value increases on two properties over time and this has the potential to help you increase your wealth in the long run.
Other uses for a lump sum in cash are literally endless – you could use your equity to buy your family a boat, a caravan, the overseas holiday you’ve always wanted or even use it to invest in a business or stocks and shares. However, we encourage you to act responsibly and only access your equity for lifestyle reasons if you can genuinely afford it. That means talking to us to help you discover your real financial position and if accessing your equity is a good idea for you.
3. To renovate or extend your home
Renovating or extending your current home to meet the needs of your growing family or changing lifestyle is often a better option than purchasing an entirely new home. By renovating or extending, you will be able to create the home that exactly meets your needs and if you’re careful about the improvements you make, perhaps even increase its value at the same time. Even though you will need to access your equity, you may be able to improve the value of your home to offset this cost.
Maintaining the value of your largest asset is important. So even if you don’t want to extend your home, keeping it up to date and in good repair is something you should consider periodically. If your home could do with an update, don’t hesitate to talk with us about refinancing to renovate.
4. To consolidate debts
Your home loan interest rate is probably the lowest form of interest you will need to pay on any loan in Australia. Credit card interest rates can be as much as four times higher than your home loan interest rate and this can make credit card debts difficult to pay off. Other expensive debts like car loans or personal loans can also prove to be a drain on your finances.
If the value of your home has increased over the last couple of years, it may be worth considering accessing some of the equity in your home to pay off your more expensive debts. This could dramatically reduce the amount of interest you have to pay on your overall debts each month, offering you some financial relief and helping you to enjoy a more comfortable lifestyle.
It’s a far better idea to be in a position to save money each month rather than waste it on expensive credit card interest repayments. By refinancing to consolidate your debts, you could possibly find yourself in a position to save money to make other investments or even pay off your home loan sooner. Ask us to help you crunch the numbers to see if using your home loan to consolidate your debts will be a good idea for you.
Ask us if refinancing is the right move
If you have plans or goals for your future then remember, your home loan can be used as a financial tool to help you reach them. We’re here to help you make the most out of your home loan, so please don’t hesitate to give us a call for a chat about what you want to achieve and how refinancing your home loan could help to get you where you want to be. We’re always happy to spend the time with you to help you make the right decisions to reach your financial goals, so please call us today.
06 Nov 2015
We hope you are enjoying the beautiful spring weather and backed the winner on the Melbourne Cup last week! It’s hard to get down to business with so many festivities going on – but spring is traditionally the busiest time of year in property markets around the country and this year is no exception!
Many analysts were predicting a rate cut in November, however the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) have elected to keep the official cash rate on hold at 2.0 per cent for another month.
This is the sixth month in a row that the RBA has kept rates on hold after cutting rates to historically low levels in February and May this year. This extended period of stability on interest rates is having a positive effect on our economy, with the Australian dollar mostly holding at a more acceptable level and boosting our tourism and export markets. Employment is also growing and consumer spending is improving.
Home loan interest rates have been on the move during October, despite the RBA keeping the cash rate on hold. These interest rate movements were initiated by the big four banks largely to protect their shareholder’s interests, with rate rises following from many other lenders.
The rapid rises in home values that we have been seeing in Melbourne and Sydney are finally starting to slow in response to the upward movement in rates and the changes in investor lending regulations by APRA coming into effect over the last six months. This is good news if you’ve been struggling to get your deposit together for your first home or a property investment.
Home values in Sydney only increased by 0.28 per cent during October. Melbourne home values increased by 0.64 per cent and Brisbane/Gold Coast improved by 0.16 per cent. In Adelaide home values rose by 1.47 per cent, in Canberra they rose by 1.48 per cent and in Hobart 1.44 per cent.
Only Perth and Darwin showed declines. Home values in Perth fell by 2.76 per cent in October and by a marginal 0.13 per cent in Darwin.
The number of properties on the market is currently quite high – as is to be expected for this time of year. Auction numbers were up in most states last month, however it should be noted that private sales are now becoming more popular than auctions in Western Australia and the Northern Territory. Auction clearance rates were down across the board, indicating that there may be less competition and buyers may be more discerning about property prices.
The table below shows the relevant auction numbers for each state and corresponding clearance rates, for the week ending Sunday 1 November:
STATE No. of AUCTIONS CLEARANCE Victoria 611 65% New South Wales 1361 64% Queensland 186 58% South Australia 146 58% Western Australia 49 56% Northern Territory 5 67% ACT 130 69% Tasmania 10 33%
If your bank increased your home loan interest rate last month, then it may be a good time to give us a call to get a home loan health check. Not all lenders have increased their rates, and some have increased them less than others, so we can shop around to get the right deal for you. We can also access some great rates for property investors and first home buyers, so if you’d like to check what home loan options are available for you then please don’t hesitate to give us a call today.
The information provided in this newsletter is general in nature and does not constitute personal financial advice. The information has been prepared without taking into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on any information you should consider the appropriateness of the information with regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs. Information sources: Auction results: www.realestate.com.au Home values: www.corelogic.com.au
Sincerely , Element Finance