Is now the time to refinance your investment property? RateCity

Is now the time to refinance your investment property? RateCity
Is now the time to refinance your investment property? RateCity

Is now the time to refinance your investment property? RateCity

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In this fast-changing mortgage environment, it can be hard for investors know whether to wait things out or alter their home loan now before conditions further evolve.

Many investors regularly refinance and restructure so they can unlock equity and maximise their tax position – but do old strategies still apply in this new environment?

Things became serious on 31 March, when APRA responded to the “heightened risks” in the mortgage market by tightening lending criteria.

These latest measures – which followed a first round of tightening that began in December 2014 – were “aimed at improving the quality of new mortgage lending generally and moderating the growth of investor lending in particular”.

As a result, it has become harder for investors to qualify for mortgages – particularly interest-only loans, and even more so interest-only loans with an LVR above 90 percent.

Even before APRA’s announcement, lenders had been making life harder for investors by increasing rates and serviceability requirements.

This column won’t hand out financial advice – only a broker or planner or accountant can do that, but if anyone does want to refinance, they have now been given a opportunity that has never been seen before in Australia.

RateCity has created the Switch & Save Sale to allow borrowers to access market-leading rates while refinancing.

Borrowers who are with ANZ, Commonwealth Bank, NAB or Westpac could actually save up to $39,000 over 15 years by switching through the Switch & Save Sale.

RateCity arrived at that figure after calculating how much borrowers would save if they switched from an average-sized mortgage from the average discounted variable rate offered by one of the big four banks to the lowest variable rate in the Switch & Save Sale.

It’s impossible to say how APRA might act in the future – but the regulator made it clear back on 31 March that further changes might be on the cards.

“APRA will continue to observe conditions in the residential mortgage lending market, and may adjust the above measures, or implement additional ones, should circumstances warrant it,” it said in a media release.

As far as investors are concerned, the fast-changing mortgage environment might have some more surprises in store. 

Tags: 
Home Loans Refinancing

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