1 in 5 Aussies would rather go to the dentist than apply for a home loan
With house prices finally dipping after years of climbing, it’s looking good for first home buyers who want to put their foot on the property ladder - but as we know, it’s really not that easy. Pen to paper home loan applications are about as popular as a garden salad at the pub, and according to St. George Bank, Aussie’s would rather do almost anything else.
The 2018 St. George Home Buying Survey revealed that of the 2.2 million Aussies planning to buy their first home in the next five years, 48% have put off the application process because it’s “just too daunting.”
According to the survey, 20% of Aussies would rather visit the dentist, 19% prefer a night with the in-laws, 18% would prefer to sit in peak-hour traffic and 16% would even endure a 14-hour flight without entertainment.
“Our research suggests home buyers, particularly first home buyers, are still optimistic about owning a home, but the actual application process is forcing Aussies to throw it in the too hard basket,” said St. George General Manager, Ross Miller.
Online applications the way of the future
The St. George research suggests that 25% of Aussie home loan applicants find the amount paperwork involved in applying for a mortgage challenging, and 20% believe the length of the process is too long.
In order to tackle these issues, St. George has launched an online application tool to make the whole ordeal less stressful.
“When you also consider 90% of home buyers start their home loan search online, digitising the experience was a no-brainer for us,” said Miller.
The platform will allow new applicants to see how much they can borrow, any upfront costs, their monthly repayments and a personalised interest rate to add transparency to the process. On hand will also be a St.George home loan expert, available during extended hours, as well as live chat and over-the-phone options.
“As a family bank, it’s important that customers can talk to an expert at a time that’s convenient for them - whether that’s after work, on a Saturday once the sport drop-offs and pick-ups are over, or even on the couch in front of the telly after putting the kids to bed,” said Miller.
How to choose the best home loan online
Let’s face it, finding a home loan online can be confusing! With so much jargon to throw you off, you might not even know where to start. The first step to finding a great home loan is knowing what to look for, so here’s a few tips to get you off on the right foot:
- Pay attention to the comparison rate. When comparing home loan rates, always use the comparison rate - this rate gives you a better idea of the ‘true’ cost of a loan, taking into account any fees and charges that will impact how much you pay.
- Don’t ignore fees. Fees can really add up, and over the life of a 30-year loan, you could end up paying thousands in ongoing service fees. When comparing lenders online, make sure you’re reading the fine print so you’re not stuck paying fees where they can be avoided.
- Search for good features. It’s simple, the more features, the better. Things to look out for are home loans with a redraw facility, top-up options, an offset account and a repayment holiday.
- Be mindful of your online security. Whenever you handle money online, make sure you’re being careful by only entering your personal financial information in on sites that you’ve researched and that are security protected. Also, if you have to create an account, make sure you choose a secure password to protect your information.
If you’re one of the 2.2 million Aussies looking for a home loan in the next few years, a good place to start is by comparing rates from a range of great lenders. Mozo’s home loan comparison hub can help you get off on the right foot, putting competitive offers side-by-side so you can decide what’s best for you.