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Wednesday, 29 August 2018 06:05

10 tips for choosing an investment property

So, you’re thinking of buying your first residential investment property? There are a few things to consider before making the move. Here are our top 10 tips for avoiding potential difficulties and ensuring success. Know your goal Understanding your financial objectives is key to finding the right investment property. The actual property itself is rarely the end goal when it comes to investing – the financial elements should be your key focus. First, decide what your investment goal is and then create a plan to achieve it within a realistic time frame. Are you looking for a plan for retirement? An income-generator to fund your children’s education? Or building equity to gain a regular income? Define a plan and review…
Wednesday, 27 June 2018 02:41

Home loans 101

There are a range of home loans available in Australia, so it can be hard to understand their features and whether they are right for you. This guide explains all you need to know. Variable loans Variable loans are loans that are subject to interest rate fluctuations. Whenever your bank increases or decreases interest rates, you will end up either paying more or less for your loan, depending on what the bank has decided to do. A typical owner-occupied mortgage is taken out over 25 or 30 years, although you can reduce the overall term by making higher or more frequent payments. Mortgages are either based on principal (the amount you borrowed from the bank) and interest (the amount you…
Wondering how to pay off your home loan sooner? We look at some things you could do. Australian home loan interest rates remain at historic lows, and the opportunities for paying off a mortgage early are better than ever. Used in conjunction with low rates, here are some extra steps that can speed up loan repayments and reduce your loan balance. Make higher repayments One of the easiest ways to quickly reduce the balance of your mortgage is to make larger loan repayments. The minimum repayments required on a loan are calculated on the amount owing and the prevailing home loan interest rate. Repaying more than the minimum can cut the overall term of the loan and save you thousands…
In Australia, there are a number of ways to structure your home loan repayments. Finding the best option may save you time and money on your mortgage. Here is some information to help you choose the repayment structure that works best for you. Variable rate loans Variable interest rate loans are all about flexibility. Essentially, with a variable rate loan, the interest rate moves up or down as the market moves. This means your loan repayments may also change month-to-month. If the interest rate drops, then your repayments may drop as well. However, in the event of an interest rate rise, your repayments could also increase. Many variable rate loans come with additional features, which can reduce the amount of…
It’s one of the less glamorous home loan features, but the redraw facility deserves a second look. Here’s why: The redraw facility explained A redraw facility lets you make additional repayments to reduce your variable rate home loan balance and save on interest. If you pay more than your minimum scheduled repayments, then you’ll have money available to redraw from your home loan. The redraw facility is a common feature of many home loans. It’s not available, though, on construction loans and only some lenders allow it for fixed rate loans. You can redraw funds if, and when, they are needed, or you can keep the funds in your home loan to pay off your principal faster. The amount available…
A new baby completely changes your life. Are you also prepared for how a new baby might affect your chances of buying a home? Here are some things to consider before you submit your application. When a lender assesses your home loan application, they look at your income, assets, debts and expenses before deciding whether they think you can make the repayments. Those figures are likely to change when you have your first child. That means your eligibility for a home loan could also change. Changes to your income A lender needs to know that your income will cover your mortgage repayments, even while someone’s taking time off work to be a new mum or dad. If you’re the primary…
Wednesday, 06 December 2017 04:32

Overcapitalising: What it is and how to avoid it

As a home owner or property investor, you may have heard the term ‘overcapitalising’. But what exactly is it and why is it considered bad? While adding a new deck or kitchen can increase the value and enjoyment of your property, overcapitalising can end up costing you more than you planned. Here’s a closer look at what overcapitalisation is, why it’s bad, and how you can avoid it and still increase the value of your property. What is overcapitalising? Simply put, overcapitalisation is when the cost of a home improvement is more than the value it adds to your property. For example, if you buy a property for $500,000 and spend $100,000 on a new outdoor kitchen area with timber…
Wednesday, 06 December 2017 03:15

How to get the most out of refinancing

Everyone wants to pay less on their mortgage, and refinancing is one strategy to help lower your interest rates – but is it worth it? We take a look at how you can get the most out of refinancing. Why refinance? Generally, people refinance to negotiate a better deal on their home loan and pay it off sooner. Depending on your situation, you should be able to save money by taking advantage of lower interest rates, or new products that weren’t available when you first negotiated your home loan. To help put it in perspective, let’s say you previously took out a $300,000 loan at 7.5% over 30 years with monthly repayments of $2,098. If you refinanced to a new…
The hammer falls, the auction has ended, the bidding’s all done… and the property is passed in to you, the highest bidder. You’re standing out the front of what could be your dream home, surrounded by curious neighbours, nosy passers-by and who knows how many other serious buyers. So what now? What happens next? With the property passed in, as the highest bidder you have the exclusive first right to negotiate with the seller. Only when you walk away can the agent start negotiations with someone else – so remember that you’re in the box seat. At this point the agent will invite you to come inside and negotiate – don’t go! Once you’re inside, you’re in the seller’s territory…
Looking for ways to pay off your mortgage in record time? Whether you’re a seasoned investor or buying your first home, an offset loan can help you reduce interest payments, save on tax and pay your mortgage off years ahead of schedule. What is an offset loan? With an offset loan (also called an offset account, interest offset account, mortgage offset account or offset home loan) the borrower takes out a home loan and opens a linked savings or transaction account. The balance in the savings account is then ‘offset’ daily against the home loan. How an offset loan works With an offset loan, instead of receiving interest on your savings account each month, the account balance is offset against…
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