Which bank is best for first home buyers?

The federal government’s first home deposit scheme kicks off on 1 January 2020 and house prices are low but rising. First home buyers are reportedly [...]

POSTED ON December 3, 2019
Origin sale put on hold

The ANZ Bank has decided not to sell its Origin Mortgage Management Services for now. Origin has a total loan book of $7 billion and [...]

POSTED ON October 9, 2007
Credit funding taps turned back on

Although RAMS $300 million and Liberty Financial's $225 million securitisation deals were priced higher than they could have been before the credit crunch, they give [...]

POSTED ON October 8, 2007
ANZ reviews Gunns mill funding

The ANZ Bank is reviewing whether or not it can finance the Gunns' $2 billion pulp mill. The bank adopted the Equator Principles in late [...]

POSTED ON October 8, 2007
RBA consents to low-doc securities

The Reserve Bank of Australia has announced that it will accept securities which include a portion of low-doc residential mortgages as it tries to improve [...]

POSTED ON October 8, 2007
Online fraud set to increase

The introduction of credit cards which use chips and PINs could result in an increase in online fraud according to the chief executive of Retail [...]

POSTED ON October 8, 2007
IPO’s back on the cards

A strong recovery by the local sharemarket will see investment banks revive a number of public floats that had previously been shelved. $5.3 billion has [...]

POSTED ON October 5, 2007
Rates on hold as RBA weighs risks

Interest rates have been kept steady by the Reserve Bank at its October board meeting. Despite a buoyant economy to which the RBA says inflation [...]

POSTED ON October 5, 2007
NAB CEO succession wide open

The man that most thought would be next to lead the National Australia Bank has ruled out running for the top job. Michael Ullmer joined [...]

POSTED ON October 5, 2007
BankWest turns to a Hero

BankWest is continuing its attack on the established banks by creating a new transaction account aimed at people who have smaller account balances. The BankWest [...]

POSTED ON October 5, 2007
House approvals lag demand

Renters and first-home buyers will continue to find the going tough as housing approvals declined by 1.7 per cent in August and are down 0.1 [...]

POSTED ON October 5, 2007
RAMS shares slashed after Westpac offer

Shares in non-bank lender RAMS closed at 48 cents yesterday, a drop of 18 cents or 27 per cent. Investors abandoned the stock as they [...]

POSTED ON October 4, 2007
November rate rise more likely

Speculation of a rate rise in November has intensified with imports growing by 5.5 per cent in August, pushing the trade deficit for the month [...]

POSTED ON October 4, 2007
ATO to crack down on non-lodgement

The Australian Tax Office may be given increased powers to impose financial penalties on people who fail to lodge income tax returns. The inspector-general of [...]

POSTED ON October 4, 2007
New record for sharemarket

The local sharemarket has hit another record as investors believe that the worst of the global credit market crisis might be over. Record highs for [...]

POSTED ON October 3, 2007
ANZ to lift interest rates

The new chief executive of the ANZ Bank has warned that the global credit turmoil could last for years and that Australian consumers will bare [...]

POSTED ON October 2, 2007
Interest rates bite households and government

Over half the respondents in a survey of 1,530 people said that they would have trouble meeting their home loan repayments if interest rates rose [...]

POSTED ON September 28, 2007
High vacancies to lower unemployment rate

Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows that job vacancies in the year to August rose by 11.9 per cent and a total of [...]

POSTED ON September 28, 2007
Reverse mortgages reviewed by ASIC

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission is expected to release the findings of its investigation into the reverse mortgage market in the next two months. [...]

POSTED ON September 28, 2007
AFG delays IPO

Australian Finance Group has delayed its planned public float due to concerns about the poor state of the credit market. AFG is Australia's largest mortgage [...]

POSTED ON September 28, 2007
Skilled vacancies fall

Wages pressure may ease with skilled vacancies down by 1.7 per cent in September, the second consecutive monthly decline. Figures from the Department of Employment [...]

POSTED ON September 27, 2007
Drought assistance for farmers and businesses

In a package of drought assistance announced by the federal government yesterday, the largest component the allocation of $170 million to assist 1,000 farmers who [...]

POSTED ON September 26, 2007
More scrutiny for home loan funding

The Reserve Bank of Australia yesterday signalled that there was a need for greater scrutiny of bank funding. The deputy governor of the RBA, Ric [...]

POSTED ON September 26, 2007
SME lending to ease: Westpac

Westpac has predicted that business credit growth will slow from the current annual rate of 15 per cent. Group executive of the bank's business financial [...]

POSTED ON September 26, 2007
No buyer for RAMS yet

While the chief executive of RAMS Home Loan Group, Greg Kolivos, said that he is not aware of any bank taking a stake in the [...]

POSTED ON September 26, 2007
Special accounts used for tax not drought

The average balance of a farm management deposit account rose to a record $68,600 in the June quarter, up $2,600 or 4 per cent from [...]

POSTED ON September 26, 2007
Credit crisis not over yet

In its latest review of the financial system the Reserve Bank of Australia has said that the relative calm in money markets over the past [...]

POSTED ON September 25, 2007
NSW is repossession capital

While the national rate of people falling behind in their home loan repayments is a low 0.41 per cent, in NSW this figure increased to [...]

POSTED ON September 25, 2007
No inquiry into ASIC

The federal Treasurer Peter Costello has denied that investors need more protection despite 20,000 people losing a total of around $500 million over the last [...]

POSTED ON September 24, 2007
Government has plenty of land in reserve

Victoria has accused the federal government of sitting on enough land for around 30,000 new homes in the latest bout of the blame game around [...]

POSTED ON September 24, 2007
Queensland to regulate mortgage brokers

The Queensland government will go ahead with plans to regulate the mortgage broking industry even though national regulation will be introduced in 2009. With around [...]

POSTED ON September 24, 2007
Property lot production too low

Production of property lots in Sydney is predicted to increase by 25 per cent through 2008-09 but, in the nation's largest city, this is from [...]

POSTED ON September 24, 2007
Tenancy laws would make eviction easier

NSW is proposing changes to its residential tenancy laws which it says are aimed at increasing the appeal of property to investors and improve the [...]

POSTED ON September 24, 2007
Home sellers ask saint for help

As homes in America become harder to sell with buyers drying up and credit becoming scarce, some desperate sellers are seeking divine intervention. St Joseph [...]

POSTED ON September 21, 2007
Home sales slump

New home sales across the country were down by 8.6 per cent in August according to the Housing Industry Association. With the August rate rise [...]

POSTED ON September 21, 2007
Rates may rise without RBA action

The ongoing shakeout of global credit markets means that Australian borrowers are less likely to face another 0.25 per cent rise in their home loans [...]

POSTED ON September 21, 2007
Finding a loan may get tougher

Lenders will tighten their policies in the wake of the US sub-prime crisis according to the chairman of Wizard Home Loans, Mark Bouris, warning that [...]

POSTED ON September 20, 2007
Non-bank lenders good for competition

The deputy governor of the Reserve Bank, Ric Battelino, has come out in support of non-bank lenders saying that the growth of the sector had [...]

POSTED ON September 20, 2007
Credit cards hide mortgage stress

The number of households defaulting on mortgage repayments or at significant risk of default is predicted to grow from 70,000 now to 113,000 by the [...]

POSTED ON September 19, 2007
US Reserve cuts rates for first time in 4 years

The US Federal Reserve has cut its benchmark interest rate by 0.5 percentage points, surprising markets which had expected a cut of only 0.25 percentage [...]

POSTED ON September 19, 2007
Dangers of side-stepping consumer protections

The Uniform Consumer Credit Code has been criticised for failing to keep up with the evolving mortgage industry since its introduction in 1994. The code [...]

POSTED ON September 18, 2007
Loan default rates climb

Credit check company Veda Advantage said that the number of bills not paid for 60 days was up by 28.6 per cent in the 2006-07 [...]

POSTED ON September 17, 2007
IMF concerned about household debt

The International Monetary Fund has highlighted the housing sector as a weak point in the Australian economy. In a report last week the IMF noted [...]

POSTED ON September 17, 2007
Banks use technology to drive up card usage

Banks and credit card companies are relying on new products including chip-enabled cards to drive growth in the credit and debit card market. There are [...]

POSTED ON September 17, 2007
Predatory lender watch list

Wizard Home Loans chief, Mark Bouris, has called for the creation of a 'red list' that would inform borrowers which banks and non-bank lenders have [...]

POSTED ON September 14, 2007
Westpac chases business banking share

Westpac plans to expand its business banking division, increasing its staff by one third and opening 11 new business centres. The bank's group executive for [...]

POSTED ON September 14, 2007
Mortgage funder increases rates

ANZ Bank's subsidiary Origin Mortgage Management Services which offers wholesale funding for residential loans has increased its interest rates. Origin supplies $7 billion in 40,000 [...]

POSTED ON September 14, 2007
Breathing space for home loan borrowers

Home loan borrowers may be getting some respite from higher interest rates from an unusual quarter, amid buoyant economic conditions that might normally warrant further [...]

POSTED ON September 14, 2007
Banks aim for customer advocacy

Financial institutions around the world are starting to change their focus from customer satisfaction to customer advocacy. The idea is that a customer is not [...]

POSTED ON September 12, 2007
More market troubles as US jobs fall

There are fears that there will be another sharemarket sell-off today as the possibility of the US sliding into recession grows. Following news of 4,000 [...]

POSTED ON September 10, 2007
Westpac accused of pushing debit cards

Westpac has been accused of aggressively steering customers toward its Mastercard debit card to try to boost profits. The charge comes from members of the [...]

POSTED ON September 10, 2007
Values up for northern rural properties

Values of rural properties across northern Australia are climbing as cashed-up cattle barons seek to expand. Property advisers Herron Todd White (HTW) have estimated that [...]

POSTED ON September 10, 2007
IMB chief parts company

The chief executive of building society IMB, Wayne Morris, will depart at the end of this year when his current contract expires. Mr Morris is [...]

POSTED ON September 6, 2007
Rates steady despite strong economy

The Reserve Bank (RBA) left interest rates on hold this week and can be expected to hold off again next month at least, despite the [...]

POSTED ON September 6, 2007
Lower fees and new account options at NAB

NAB has responded to consumer concerns by announcing reductions to their exception fees as well as a new range of deposit accounts that can be [...]

POSTED ON September 5, 2007
Aussies pay more for banking than Brits

Research by research group Oxera has found that the typical median-income Australian family pays $222 each year for a transaction account, while an equivalent family [...]

POSTED ON September 5, 2007
Coalition stalks predatory lenders

A new coalition of mortgage providers and consumer groups has been formed to push for uniform legislation and the closure of legal loopholes that may [...]

POSTED ON September 5, 2007
Business investment pushes GDP up

The economy grew by 4.3 per cent in the year to June, and was up by 0.9 per cent in the quarter, placing further pressure [...]

POSTED ON September 5, 2007
NAB braces for staff poaching

BankWest has said that its recruitment program for its east coast expansion plans is going well, with over half the people needed for the first [...]

POSTED ON September 5, 2007
Virgin holds rates, for now

Virgin Money are going to resist passing on to their customers any increases in funding costs for now, accepting reduced margins instead. Virgin's home loans [...]

POSTED ON September 4, 2007
Challenger grows broking arm

Challenger Financial Services Group has paid more than $300 million to buy Australia's largest mortgage broking aggregators, Choice Aggregation Services and PLAN Australia, as well [...]

POSTED ON September 4, 2007
Prospects good for Bendigo / Adelaide merger

The chief executive of Bendigo Bank, Rob Hunt, has said that the due diligence process being conducted into the proposed merger with Adelaide Bank is [...]

POSTED ON September 4, 2007
Consumer spending puts further risk on rate rise

Australian consumers spent freely in July as the national mood continues to be bright thanks to record employment conditions, strong consumer confidence and budget tax [...]

POSTED ON August 31, 2007
Interest rates drive up cost of living

An annual survey conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics has found that rising interest rates are hitting consumers' hip pockets. The consumer price index [...]

POSTED ON August 30, 2007
Adelaide Bank responds to rate pressure

Adelaide Bank has increased its low doc mortgage rates by 30 basis points, on top of the 25 basis point increase by the Reserve Bank [...]

POSTED ON August 30, 2007
ANZ cuts fee for those most in need

With the ANZ Bank facing a grilling by a senatorial committee which opens on Friday the bank has cut the penalty it charges poorer customers [...]

POSTED ON August 29, 2007
Rate discounts may dry up

The deputy governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia has warned that some lenders may not be able to continue offering discounted mortgage rates as [...]

POSTED ON August 29, 2007
Investors take low-doc option

Low doc home loans now make up 10 per cent of all mortgage approvals, up from just 0.5 per cent in 2000. Low doc loans [...]

POSTED ON August 29, 2007
Incomes keep up with repayments

Census data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows that in the decade to 2006, median household income rose 65.6 per cent, almost as much [...]

POSTED ON August 28, 2007
Water investment plan floated

A plan has been suggested which would allow investors to buy water and dedicate it to environmental use in a bid to obtain private support [...]

POSTED ON August 28, 2007
NAB boss calls for more regulation

The head of Australian operations at National Australia Bank, Ahmed Fahour, has said that a lack of regulation of non-bank and 'fringe' financiers has left [...]

POSTED ON August 27, 2007
Rates steady as RBA waits and watches

The Reserve Bank meets in ten days to consider interest rates but there is no realistic chance of any move in September, up or down. [...]

POSTED ON August 24, 2007
Service Fee

Usually a monthly fee levied to cover bank cost of administering & maintaining the loan account i.e. fixed and variable costs such as staff, IT [...]

POSTED ON January 16, 2002
Standard Variable Rate

The rate which lenders apply to their ‘premium’ home loan product. Carries features such as a redraw facility, portability, salary account and mortgage offset. [...]

POSTED ON January 16, 2002
Portable Loans/Portability

A portable loan allows you to sell your house and move to a new one without having to refinance. This saves application and legal fees. [...]

POSTED ON January 15, 2002
Redraw Facility

A redraw facility allows you to make additional repayments on your mortgage, and then have access to the additional repayments if you need to. Make [...]

POSTED ON January 15, 2002
Health funds push for premium increases

The cost of your private health insurance could rise this year with three of the largest health funds seeking approval to increase premiums. With the [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Warning on health fund premium increases

Labor and health consumer groups yesterday warned the Federal Government not to approve any increases in private health insurance premiums without careful investigation. At least [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Cancer studies for mobile phone users

Mobile phone users may soon find out whether long-term use increases the risk of developing brain cancer. Claimed as a world-first study, researchers at Sydney’s [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
DSR – Debt Service Ratio

Maximum of the applicants weekly, fortnightly or monthly wage which will support loan repayments over the agreed loan term. Usually expressed as a percentage – [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Establishment Fee

Also called Application Fee. Fee which covers basic costs in setting up loan from initial interview to loan drawdown. Some lenders choose to absorb this [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Basic Rate

Applied to loans commonly called ‘No Frills Loans’ which are generally cheaper than Standard Variable Rate Loans but do not have features such as a [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Break Costs

Relates to the penalty fees charged when a borrower terminates a fixed-rate loan contract before the expiry of the fixed-rate period. [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Exit Fee

Fee imposed by some lenders when paying out a loan. [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Home Equity Loan

A home equity account gives you a revolving line of credit secured by the value of your house. This allows you to use the funds [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Legal Fee

May be charged where an outside party is used to prepare bank documentation. [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002

Loan to Value Ratio. Refers to the maximum amount lenders will approve against the value of any property taken as security for your home loan. [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Mortgage Insurance (MGI)

Some lenders may provide up to 95% of funds for a loan if you agree to take out mortgage insurance (MGI). This figure is a [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002
Offset account/Mortgage offset

Offset accounts can help reduce your tax bill by offsetting taxable income from deposit accounts against interest paid in after tax dollars on mortgage repayments. [...]

POSTED ON January 14, 2002