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Bank Valuation: Why do I need one? What can I do if it comes back low?

If you’re looking to buy a home or currently exploring your refinance options, it's likely that the lender will want to order a valuation on the property. Here we explain what a valuation is, why it's necessary and what options you might have should one come back lower than you expect it to.   What is a valuation? A valuation is an assessment of a property's value - for mortgage purposes only. Valuations are used to determine the Loan To Value Ratio in a loan application and can … [Read more...]

Australian property price growth fastest in 17 years

All signs point to the notion that Australia’s housing market is in the midst of a broad-based boom with the national home value surging 2.1% higher in February; the largest month-on-month increase since 2003. The February surge, as reported by CoreLogic’s national home value index, was spurred on by record low interest rates, improving economic conditions, government incentives and low stock levels.   What areas experienced growth? Maybe the correct question is, 'What areas didn't … [Read more...]

2021: Off to a flying start with record house prices

If 2020 taught us anything, it's that things can change. And quickly we might add. Not too long ago, many highly-regarded economists predicted property prices could plummet 30% due to COVID-19. Instead, now we’re seeing official RBA documents predict that house prices could increase as much as 30% over the next three years, providing the official cash rate remains near record low levels (at or below 0.5%). Suffice to say, market sentiment is soaring with 2021 already re-writing the … [Read more...]

Still haven’t found what you’re looking for? Property listings to pick up soon

While you were having some down time over the festive season, did you find yourself scrolling through real estate listings? If so, you might’ve noticed there were fewer properties available for sale than usual. There's a reason for that.  If you couldn’t find the home you're looking for over the break, don’t stress - it’s actually much harder to find ‘the one’ at this time of year. That’s because property listings traditionally drop in December, with 2020 no exception. In fact, … [Read more...]

How is 2021 shaping up from a lending perspective? What does that mean for you as a borrower?

There’s no doubt that 2020 created challenges for many of us. Entire industries struggled, financial markets were significantly impacted and there’s still a great deal of uncertainty on the horizon. But lenders are still lending, right? Yes. And Canberrans are still buying property, right? Yes! (Double yes!) We helped record numbers of Canberrans buy homes and/or prepare to buy in 2020 and 2021 is shaping up to be no different. With a large portion of Canberra’s population in secure, … [Read more...]

3 quick and easy finance resolutions

Whenever we think of New Year’s resolutions, the first thing that comes to mind is a health kick. (Or is that just us?!) Here are three (easy) New Year’s resolutions that’ll help improve your financial wellbeing in 2021.   1. Book in for a home loan review Quick question (no judgement): do you know the interest rate on your home loan? Don’t stress if you don’t, studies show that about half of homeowners don't actually know the interest they're paying on their home loan. But … [Read more...]

Will stamp duty be stamped out? Stamp duty reforms on the horizon

NSW and Victoria have recently unveiled some big changes to the inefficient tax, and there’s hope it’ll inspire other states to review their own stamp duty arrangements.   What is stamp duty? If you haven't purchased property, you may be unfamiliar with stamp duty. It's essentially a state/territory government tax you pay when you purchase real estate. How much it costs depends on what state you’re buying in, the value of the property you’re buying, and whether you’re eligible for … [Read more...]

Responsible lending laws to be axed. What does this actually mean for you?

You may have heard of the federal government's plans to scrap responsible lending laws from 1 March 2021. It's one of the key initiatives designed to boost economic recovery from the COVID-19 recession by simplifying the regulatory landscape and freeing up access to credit for home buyers and small businesses. What does it actually mean though? And how will it affect you as a borrower? Let’s break it all down in a little more detail, and how it might affect you come 1 March … [Read more...]

Australia’s homes are some of the biggest in the world

In 2019/20, the average new house built in Australia measured a massive 236m2. This represents 2.9% growth on the year before, and represents the biggest increase in home size in 11 years. CommSec's recent report into home size trends shows Australian houses are now being built bigger than anywhere else in the world. In fact, we just reclaimed the number one spot from the US. Apartment sizes in Australia have grown too, with the average new apartment increasing 6% in the last year to … [Read more...]

RBA cuts cash rate to new record low – 3 Nov 2020

At its meeting today, the RBA decided to lower the cash rate by 15 basis points to 0.10 per cent. “Given the outlook for both employment and inflation, monetary and fiscal support will be required for some time,” Governor Lowe said in his statement. Governor Lowe added the low cash rate is likely here to stay until actual inflation is sustainably within the 2 to 3% target range. “Given the outlook, the board is not expecting to increase the cash rate for at least three years,” Governor … [Read more...]

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