Fresh air, no bumper-to-bumper traffic and more affordable home prices. There’s plenty of appeal in regional living, including a chance to potentially reduce your home loan.

The classic tune ‘Home among the gum trees’ is fast becoming a lifestyle anthem for a growing number of Aussies.

A surging number of city-slickers are heading to the bush or bay, new Commonwealth Bank research shows.

In fact, metro to regional relocations are now 20% higher than pre-Covid.

It goes to show that regional towns and cities have a lot going for them.

So what’s the appeal?

Along with a laidback lifestyle and the chance to see Skippy on your way to work, rather than countless sets of traffic lights, a key drawcard of regional living is more affordable housing.

Where are people moving?

The Sunshine Coast in South East Queensland is currently the nation’s most popular destination for Australian movers, securing a 16% share of net internal migration over the past 12 months.

Other popular areas outside our nation’s capital cities include the Gold Coast, Wollongong, Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, Moorabool, Geelong, the Alexandrina region, the Fraser Coast and Launceston.

Western Australia is also becoming an increasingly attractive destination with Busselton, Capel, Greater Geraldton, Northam and Albany all making their way onto various hotspot lists this quarter.

Regional home values vs city prices

Across Australia’s capital cities, the median home value is about $864,780, according to CoreLogic.

By comparison, the median value across regional markets is $626,888.

That’s a whopping $237,892 difference.

The price gap can be far bigger depending on where you’re moving from and moving to.

In Sydney, for instance, the median house value is $1,441,957. Head to regional NSW, and you could pay closer to $760,000 for a house – a saving of around $680,000!

Regional living can help cut loan repayments

Buying a more affordable home can have other flow-on benefits, such as a lower stamp duty bill.

It can also have a huge impact on home loan repayments.

For example, let’s use the above figures and pretend you’re deciding between purchasing an $864,780 capital city home and a $626,888 regional area home.

To keep things simple, let’s say you’ve saved up $173,000 for a 20% deposit on the $864,780 home – and you’ve also got extra money set aside to cover any stamp duty expenses or other fees (the exact amount would vary state to state).

Let’s also assume a home loan rate of 6.4%, which the Reserve Bank of Australia says is about the current average principal and interest variable rate, and a 30-year loan term.

On this basis, the initial mortgage for the city home would be about $692,000 and the monthly mortgage repayments on the city home would come to around $4,329 each each month.

For the regional property, your initial mortgage would be about $454,000 (assuming you put the full $173,000 towards the deposit) with monthly repayments in the order of $2,840.

That’s a monthly saving of $1,489 by moving to a regional area – extra money to spend on your home, yourself or your lifestyle.

What about capital growth?

No one can say with certainty how property values will perform in the future.

What we can do however is look at how house prices have performed across regional areas in recent years.

CoreLogic says values in regional areas have jumped 51.1% ($212,000) nationally since March 2020, compared to an average of 31.5% ($207,000) across our state capitals.

So in terms of dollar values, the capital gains across both markets have been fairly similar in recent years.

Ready for your home among the gum trees?

Okay, regional living isn’t for everyone.

Even for committed fans, moving from a capital city to a regional area calls for careful planning and research.

But if you’re hankering for a home with a more manageable mortgage, give us a call today to discuss loan options that could help you get that tree or sea change happening sooner.

Disclaimer: The content of this article is general in nature and is presented for informative purposes. It is not intended to constitute tax or financial advice, whether general or personal nor is it intended to imply any recommendation or opinion about a financial product. It does not take into consideration your personal situation and may not be relevant to circumstances. Before taking any action, consider your own particular circumstances and seek professional advice. This content is protected by copyright laws and various other intellectual property laws. It is not to be modified, reproduced or republished without prior written consent.

You might have seen a headline or two about a particular big bank being at war with brokers. Nothing could be further from the truth. Our mission is – and always will be – putting you first. That’s why three in every four borrowers now come to us for help.

Borrowers are more spoilt for choice than ever before when it comes to home loans.

But who has time to sort through over 100 lenders in the market to pick out a loan that’s suited to your needs?

Your mortgage broker does.

But for the big end of town, increased competition can mean lower profit margins (and unhappy shareholders!).

That doesn’t mean brokers are at war with any particular bank though, as a few articles stated in the Australian Financial Review over recent weeks (here’s a great non-paywalled response).

As Mortgage and Finance Association of Australia (MFAA) CEO Anja Pannek succinctly put it: “Positioning banks as competing with brokers is like saying Hilton hotels is competing with travel agents, instead of Hyatt and Sofitel. It completely misrepresents how the mortgage broking industry works”.

What brokers do is streamline the home loan process. It’s just one of the reasons why mortgage brokers are the go-to choice for 74.1% of home buyers (and that figure has been steadily increasing!).

But our role isn’t just about helping you find a competitively-priced home loan with the features you may need.

We go much further.

Here are three other ways you can benefit from the support of a mortgage broker.

We work in your best interest

Behind the friendly face of your mortgage broker is a serious legal obligation.

We are bound by a Best Interests Duty.

It means we are required by law to always put your best interests first, providing home loan options that are based on your unique needs.

That matters because if a loan isn’t the right choice for you, it may not save you money in the long run, no matter how low the rate is.

Banks are not bound by the best interests duty.

Brokers can help guide the way

Buying a home is possibly the biggest purchase you’ll ever make.

It’s also something you’ll probably only do a handful of times over your life. But this is something we help people through every day.

We can act as a trusted guide to help you navigate the complex process of buying a home with confidence.

We can also help you assess your borrowing capacity, so you can buy with confidence, and we can explain where you can consider making shifts in your budget to become home loan-ready sooner.

And because we’re focused on making things more straightforward for you, we take the jargon out of home buying – we can help you get your head around complex issues like lenders’ mortgage insurance, or how to prepare if you’re buying at auction.

It’s all about mentoring our customers at every stage of their property journey.

We’re here for the long term

You and your home loan are likely to be together for a while. And we’ll be right there with you.

Our regular home loan reviews provide reassurance that your loan continues to be the right option for you, even as your life changes and evolves.

And when you’re ready to kick new goals – from renovating, to buying your next home, investing in a rental property, or simply refinancing – we’ll be ready to help guide you through the process.

Like to know more about how we can help? Call us today and discover why three out of every four Australian families come to a broker first.

Disclaimer: The content of this article is general in nature and is presented for informative purposes. It is not intended to constitute tax or financial advice, whether general or personal nor is it intended to imply any recommendation or opinion about a financial product. It does not take into consideration your personal situation and may not be relevant to circumstances. Before taking any action, consider your own particular circumstances and seek professional advice. This content is protected by copyright laws and various other intellectual property laws. It is not to be modified, reproduced or republished without prior written consent.

Nan and Pop have always been good for birthday money, but one-in-10 grandparents are taking their generosity to the next level: helping their grandkids buy a first home.

Most of us have special memories of pocketing a few treats from Granny and Gramps.

But it turns out those small gestures of affection we knew as kids are morphing into something far more valuable than a few sneaky lollies before dinner or a surprise Lego set.

Research by Compare the Market shows almost three-quarters of Aussie grandparents are giving their families a financial helping hand.

Around 13% are lending money, 9% are chipping in with household bills, and one-in-10 are helping their grandkids buy a first home.

It goes to show that we’re never too old for grandparents’ treats.

But if your Gramps and Granny are keen to help you get started in the property market, it’s important to have some open conversations first.

How grandparents can help

It’s not unusual for first home buyers to need support from family – especially in this day and age – and it can come in a variety of ways.

One option is for a close relative to act as a guarantor for a first home buyer’s loan.

It’s a big ask for grandparents though.

If the borrower can’t keep up the loan repayments, a lender can ask the guarantor to pay off the debt – something that could leave Nan and Pop financially skewered.

If they can afford it, another way for grandparents to help their grandkids buy a home is by gifting money.

What to be aware of

A cash gift doesn’t have to be huge to make a difference.

It can help grow a deposit or go towards upfront buying costs such as lenders’ mortgage insurance.

However, there are traps to be aware of.

You could get a ‘please explain’ from a lender when they see a lump sum of cash land in your bank account.

The bank may want to be sure it’s not a loan that grandma and grandpa expect to be repaid.

So, it can be a good idea for grandparents to write a letter spelling out that they are gifting the money unconditionally with no strings attached.

And while this should go without saying, it would be negligent of us not to stress the importance of nan and/or pop being completely sound of mind when gifting any money.

The last thing you’d want to do is leave them short in funding their retirement, or start a rift (or legal battle) with other family members who love and care for them as much as you.

Talk to us to find out how family can help

Buying a first home is a special milestone, and it’s extra special when family members rally around to lend a hand.

But as we’ve outlined today, it’s not without its potential pitfalls.

So call us today to find out the different ways your family might be able to help you buy a place of your own.

Disclaimer: The content of this article is general in nature and is presented for informative purposes. It is not intended to constitute tax or financial advice, whether general or personal nor is it intended to imply any recommendation or opinion about a financial product. It does not take into consideration your personal situation and may not be relevant to circumstances. Before taking any action, consider your own particular circumstances and seek professional advice. This content is protected by copyright laws and various other intellectual property laws. It is not to be modified, reproduced or republished without prior written consent.

Not sure if you’ll get the thumbs up for a home loan? But you really, really like that house that just popped up? Making an offer ‘subject to finance’ could be the right move. Here’s how it works.

Picture this. You’ve seen a home you’re crazy about, and you don’t want to miss out to another buyer. So, you sign on the dotted line and hand over your deposit.

Things are getting real now. But what if they’re not? What if you struggle to land a home loan?

It’s a scenario every home buyer dreads.

If you have to back out of the contract because you can’t get loan approval, you could lose your deposit.

One possible solution, however, is to make your offer ‘subject to finance’.

Why make an offer subject to finance?

In practical terms, making an offer subject to finance means an extra clause is added to the sale contract.

Essentially, it can allow the buyer to walk away from a sale with their deposit intact if mortgage finance can’t be arranged within a set timeframe.

Understandably, the seller won’t wait around forever. So, the time allowed to secure loan approval can be tight, often a matter of days.

However, a subject to finance clause could help you avoid a last minute race for finance – a pressure-cooker situation that could see you accept a loan or lender that’s not right for your needs.

The downside of buying subject to finance

There is a catch to making an offer subject to finance: the seller doesn’t have to agree to it.

In today’s property market, homes are selling fast – in as little as 10 days in some neighbourhoods.

With that sort of buyer demand, there may not be much incentive for a seller to agree to an offer that’s subject to finance.

Or, if you’re buying at auction, the sale is usually unconditional. Chances are you won’t have an opportunity to alter the sale contract.

These drawbacks highlight the value of speaking to us before you go home hunting.

Having your loan pre-approved, for example, can take away a lot of the uncertainty around securing finance.

Can I buy before I sell?

When you’re ready to climb the property ladder, another key question is often whether it’s better to sell first and buy later.

With money in the bag from the sale of your old home, you may be less concerned about making an offer subject to finance.

That said, if you see a place you want to buy before your home sells, a bridging loan could cover the funding gap.

The beauty of a bridging loan is that this type of finance usually requires interest-only payments, not principal and interest payments.

The downside is that the interest rate tends to be higher than for a traditional home loan.

Talk to us today

There’s a lot to plan for when you’re buying your next home.

Call us to streamline your purchase. From subject to finance offers to bridging loans, upgrading can be a lot less stressful when you know the options.

Disclaimer: The content of this article is general in nature and is presented for informative purposes. It is not intended to constitute tax or financial advice, whether general or personal nor is it intended to imply any recommendation or opinion about a financial product. It does not take into consideration your personal situation and may not be relevant to circumstances. Before taking any action, consider your own particular circumstances and seek professional advice. This content is protected by copyright laws and various other intellectual property laws. It is not to be modified, reproduced or republished without prior written consent.

If the latest federal government budget is leaving you hungry for perks and savings, you’re not alone. We’ve had a brainstorm and here are four ways you could start working towards your property goals now.

The 2024 federal budget is out, and you might be wondering what’s in it for you.

Sure, an energy rebate of $300 annually can help take the sting out of electricity bills, though at $75 per quarterly bill, it’s not a huge saving.

But you don’t need to rely on the federal budget.

Here are four strategies that could get your wealth growing.

1. Helping hands for first home buyers? There’s plenty available

Disappointed that the federal budget didn’t offer more support for first home buyers?

There is still a wide choice of home buying assistance schemes to pick from.

Take a look at:

The Home Guarantee Scheme that lets eligible first home buyers, regional Australians, and single parents buy a place of their own with a low deposit (between 5% and 2%) and zero lenders mortgage insurance.

The First Home Owner Grant, which is usually worth $10,000 but can be up to $30,000 (depending on your state) when you buy or build a new home.

Don’t forget stamp duty concessions (in most states) and the First Home Super Saver Scheme that can let first home buyers use their super to grow a deposit.

Not sure what you’re eligible for?

Talk to us to find out which first home buyer schemes you can tap into.

2. Rate relief for home owners? Make it happen sooner

Why wait for the Reserve Bank of Australia to cut rates?

You may be able to pocket rate savings of your own.

Lots of savvy home owners are jumping ship, with around $16.02 billion worth of home loans refinanced in March 2024.

It goes to show that savings can still be up for grabs for borrowers who switch to a lower rate home loan.

Call us today to find out how your loan shapes up, and discover how much you could save by switching.

3. Property investors: harness your property’s equity

Lending to property investors has jumped 31% in the past year.

It’s being driven by an 11% rise in property values since January 2023 – a jump that’s seen home owners notch up thousands of extra dollars in home equity.

The good news is that this home equity could potentially be used in place of a cash deposit to invest in an investment property.

Talk to us today about unlocking your home equity and becoming a property investor.

4. Tax relief: Stage 3 tax cuts are on the way

The federal budget has confirmed that 13.6 million Australians will pocket tax savings from 1 July.

And there’s a good chance you’re among them.

The Stage 3 tax cuts are expected to deliver an average tax saving of $1,888 a year, or about $36 weekly.

On the face of it, that’s not a game changer when it comes to your weekly budget, but it can help you in more ways than one.

That’s because it can also boost your borrowing power if you’re buying a first home, upgrading to your next home, or planning to invest.

RateCity has crunched the numbers, finding that for a single person on an income of $100,000, the Stage 3 tax cuts could add an extra $21,000 to their borrowing power.

A couple with a combined annual income of $150,000 could see their borrowing capacity jump by almost $30,000.

Call us to know more

If the federal budget has left you hankering for more, it’s time to take matters into your own hands.

Whether you’re a first home buyer, home owner looking to save on your home loan, or property investor looking to grow your wealth, call us today for insights into how you can take the next step in your property journey.

Disclaimer: The content of this article is general in nature and is presented for informative purposes. It is not intended to constitute tax or financial advice, whether general or personal nor is it intended to imply any recommendation or opinion about a financial product. It does not take into consideration your personal situation and may not be relevant to circumstances. Before taking any action, consider your own particular circumstances and seek professional advice. This content is protected by copyright laws and various other intellectual property laws. It is not to be modified, reproduced or republished without prior written consent.