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Understand What You Can Borrow

When you’re applying for a loan, it may be tempting just to speak to the financial institution you already bank with. The mortgage market remains highly competitive and it pays to seek alternatives.

Better still, consider using the services of a mortgage broker. A good mortgage broker has access to a panel of lenders and knows their lending application processes.

This will save you time and money and give you the best chance of getting the best possible loan when you need it. They will also be able to advise you on which loan is right for you, given your own personal circumstances.

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group

Big Banks Royal Commission Jitters

Australia’s big four banks continue to manage multiple challenges including falling house prices, a regulatory backlash sparked by the royal commission, and higher funding costs.

A further challenge is that international funding costs have been creeping up in recent months – a trend likely to cost banks hundreds of millions if they are not passed on to customers.

Issues raised by the royal commission will make it much harder for major banks to raise their interest rates independently of the Reserve Bank. At some stage, however, an economic decision will need to be made.

How are you placed should interest rates rise sooner rather than later?

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group

Property Market Update

The Australian property market is a restless one that can see things heat up and cool down in a matter of months, and with everyone trying to get a slice of a property market worth $7.5 trillion it pays to keep up to date.

Whether you are a first-time property owner, or you own multiple properties, obtaining sound professional advice, before investing in property, is essential. Wealth creation through property can prove to be a prudent strategy.

Research shows investors who have a close relationship with a qualified professional will be richer than those who do not have that close relationship.

Contact Strategic Investor Group today to review your individual financial circumstances.

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group

The Interest Rate Dilemma

The Reserve Bank has left the official cash rate on hold at its fifth meeting of the year, marking a record 22 months without a change.

RBA Governor Philip Lowe said housing credit growth had slowed over the past year, especially to investors.

“APRA’s supervisory measures and tighter credit standards have been helpful in containing the build-up of risk in household balance sheets, although the level of household debt remains high,”.

“While there may be some further tightening of lending standards, the average mortgage interest rate on outstanding loans is continuing to decline.”

Will the Banks be able to manage margins or increase mortgage interest rates to offset rising international borrowing costs?

Seek professional advice today regarding your existing or proposed lending requirements.

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group

What will be the economic effect of the Banking Royal Commission?

We are already seeing the impact with individuals and company’s ability to access Bank loans becoming extremely difficult.

With the loan approval process requiring applicants to evidence the ability to service their borrowings at twice the actual interest rate, have the recent regulatory changes created a barrier for genuine borrowers.

Prudent lending principles are required, however, have the regulators gone too far, and will these actions have a flow-on effect for future economic growth?

Understand your individual position by speaking to a professional today.

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group

Australia’s credit reporting system is changing. Are you prepared?

A key component lenders use when determining whether you are approved for a loan and how much you can borrow is your credit report, which sets out your previous credit applications and any defaults on your payments

Australia is currently moving to a new system of credit reporting that will help reward people who pay off their debts on time.

Following industry-wide changes, your credit report will soon show a much more comprehensive picture of your credit health and your ability to pay your debts.

Consumers who have been diligent in making their repayments on time may be able to borrow more money and at a lower interest rate than before.

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group

Will you be affected by The Hayne Royal Commission?

Lenders have been tightening their lending controls and interest-only rates in response to regulatory pressure to lower record levels of household debt and boost prudential standards.

Ratings’ agency Standard and Poor’s is warning owner-occupiers are more likely than investors to struggle with the transition to principal and interest repayments, particularly for loans underwritten before 2015 when lending standards for interest-only were less strict.

If you have an Interest Only loan due for review it’s time to seek professional advice regarding your options.

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group

Interest Rates – What will 2018 & 2019 bring?

Most economists are forecasting that the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) will probably only make one rate rise (+25bp) to the cash rate by late 2018 while a smaller group of analysts expect interest rates to remain on hold well into 2019. Westpac’s chief economist Bill Evans has even gone as far as saying that he expects rates to remain at current levels well into 2020.

Stability from the RBA doesn’t always translate into stability for borrowers as many have already faced rising mortgage costs during the last 12 months, especially those with investment and interest-only loans.

Now’s the time to take stock and review your individual financial position.

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group

2018: The year to set up your financial future

Based on the expectations of most economists, mortgage holders have between nine and 18 months of the current record low-interest rates before the Reserve Bank will begin the process of moving them up towards more long-term historical norms.

Despite some projections from economists that the RBA will move rates up mid to late 2018, the central bank will be keeping a very close eye on the housing market and will be loathed to become accountable for any precipitous fall in house prices.

Low wages growth and inflation and very weak consumer spending will provide it with the conditions to retain interest rates at 1.5 per cent.

Interest rates are more likely to go nowhere this year.

Now is the perfect time to secure your financial future by securing the best possible borrowing solution.

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group

Commercial property behaved mostly as expected in 2017

Yields continued to firm, tenants were back in the market and the office sector did particularly well, benefiting from business growth and, in the case of Sydney, withdrawal of stock.

Australia quietly moves towards its 27th year of positive economic growth. With high levels of transparency, a comparatively stable government, strict planning controls and strong performance of most commercial property types, why wouldn’t you want to buy?

If you are considering entering the commercial property market, or have already taken advantage of the sound conditions present, contact Strategic Investor Group to ensure you get the right advice regarding any potential loan structure.

Carl Thompson – Commercial Lending Specialist, Strategic Investor Group