Borrowers lose over $3,000 in annual savings by shunning online lenders: Kirsty Lamont

Borrowers lose over $3,000 in annual savings by shunning online lenders: Kirsty Lamont
Borrowers lose over $3,000 in annual savings by shunning online lenders: Kirsty Lamont

GUEST OBSERVER

Aussies are missing out on savings of up to $3,184 a year by shunning online lenders in favour of the big banks according to financial comparison site Mozo.com.au.

A nationally representative survey conducted by Mozo found Aussies are less likely to apply for a home loan online than other financial products despite the huge savings on offer.

“Our research shows while more than half of consumers are comfortable taking out car insurance, credit cards and personal loans online, just 27 per cent would consider doing the same for a home loan,” says Mozo Director Kirsty Lamont.

“Surprisingly, less than half of consumers would consider getting a home loan with an online lender despite the majority saying the main drawcards of signing up with an online lender are cheaper interest rates and lower fees.”

Mozo compared 504 home loans from 89 providers to identify Australia’s best value home loans for its annual Mozo Experts Choice Home Loan Awards, and found that nearly two thirds of the best value home loans on the market are from online lenders.

“We found that online lenders are on average 0.70% cheaper than the Big 4 banks for a typical loan of $350,000 over 25 years. When you look at the room for savings, it’s well worth looking beyond the traditional bricks and mortar lenders.”

Mozo found the biggest barrier to Aussies getting a home loan online is their lack of familiarity with online lenders, with 56 per cent saying they simply don’t know enough about them.

“Unfamiliarity with online lenders is stopping borrowers from accessing better home loan deals,” says Lamont. “Many online lenders are able to pass on significant cost savings to consumers because they have fewer overheads than traditional banks.”

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The research shows more males than females would consider applying for a home loan online, while females were more likely not to borrow from an online lender because they didn’t know enough about them.

Of those who said they would apply for a home loan online, half are between the ages of 25 and 44, which indicates that Gen X and Y are more comfortable applying for a home loan online than other generations.

In addition to lack of familiarity, 43 per cent of consumers say they avoid shopping online for a home loan because they’d prefer to discuss their needs face to face with a mortgage expert.

“Seeking expert advice from a third party might be a valuable service in navigating the mortgage application maze but this could come at a steep price if borrowers neglect to do independent research beforehand,” says Lamont.

“Many borrowers who go through a bank or mortgage broker often don’t get to see the full spectrum of offers available and may be unsure of what rates are available elsewhere, especially in the online space.”

Online lenders iMortgage, loans.com.au and UBank were among the major winners in this year’s Mozo Experts Choice Awards, while Homestar was named the Non-Bank Home Lender of the Year after raking in mentions across five home loan categories.

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Kirsty Lamont is the director of Mozo.com.au

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Home Loans Savings

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