Navigating your first home loan application

 
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Although applying for your first home loan may be the biggest financial decision you’ll make, it doesn’t need to be an overwhelming one. With the right preparation, a realistic understanding of your financial position and the right professional advice, you can position yourself as an attractive first home loan customer and be approved in no time.


So when it comes to your first home loan application, here’s five important things I think you should be doing:

1. Clean up your credit

Before applying for your first home loan, make sure you are creditworthy in the eyes of a lender by obtaining a copy of your personal credit file. Your credit history will be a key factor that a lender will consider when deciding to process your loan application.

If you have a history of credit defaults, be prepared to explain honestly and up-front to the lender why those defaults occurred, how you remedied the situation and how you’ve taken steps to ensure the situation will not repeat itself. 

2. Check your financial position

It’s also important to conduct a self-assessment of your financial position. This is to ascertain the amount you can borrow and the ease with which you’ll be able to manage your repayments.

Try creating a spreadsheet of your income, expenses, assets and liabilities. Make sure you are honest with yourself about your everyday living expenses and commitments. Your home loan repayments should equate to no more than a third of your income, give or take your expenses.

Then consider the ancillary costs of buying a home and getting a loan, such as legal fees, lender establishment fees, stamp duty (if no government concession applies) and so on. You may also want to look into the availability of any available government concessions or grants that may help reduce the overall cost.

3. Be deposit-ready

Although it’s true that some lenders don’t require a deposit – or require only a minimum deposit – you may want to aim to have a solid 20 per cent deposit saved up. Also factor in the additional costs of buying a home such as conveyancing, stamp duty and removalists.

Saving a deposit is a good idea for two reasons: 

  1. A 20 per cent deposit could mean you do not have to pay for Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI). LMI is a premium amount that a borrower must pay to the lender when the loan-to-valuation ratio exceeds 80 per cent. Some lenders may make the loan available without having to get this insurance.

  2. A 20 per cent deposit immediately tells a lender that you are financially disciplined and responsible – attributes that will encourage lenders to look favourably upon your first home loan application.

If you do not have a 20 per cent deposit, don’t despair, there are many banks out there with many offers to suit your current situation.

  1. Do your research

Finding the right first home loan often entails so much more than just interest rates. You should try to research a range of products and investigate their fine print, including any set-up and break fees, loan structures, flexibility options such as redraw and offsetting, repayment options and guarantees.

*Shameless plug – one of the biggest value adds that Multipart Finance has is to save you a ton of time by finding you the best loan product to match your lifestyle requirements. We do this by intimately understanding all the policies of our panel of over 20 lenders and providing you with our preferred options rather then you having to talk to a whole bunch of different lenders. 

  1. Gather your documents

To facilitate a fast assessment of your loan application, it’s helpful to gather recent copies of your pay slips and evidence of any other income.

Also, gather copies of your bank account statements and credit card statements. If you’ve been employed for only a short time, try strengthening your application by obtaining letters of reference from your current and previous employers. If you are self-employed, a way to show your monthly income, outgoings and cashflow is by having business invoices and receipts on hand in case the lender requires such evidence of your earnings.

If you’ve been thinking about getting into the market and buying your property, get in contact with me today on 0400 530 868 or tim@multipartfinance.com.au.

Until next time!

Tim Russell

Elizabeth Stewart