Westpac ditched from government’s first home loan deposit scheme

Westpac ditched from government’s first home loan deposit scheme
Staff reporterDecember 7, 2020

Westpac was set to be one of the two major banks to offer mortgages under the federal government’s first home loan deposit scheme.

NAB was announced yesterday as the first bank on the lending panel.

But Westpac is set to be axed as the other big bank in light of the money-laundering allegations it is currently facing according to bank insiders, The Australian reports.

The Australian confirmed Westpac’s bid was one of the two best applications reviewed by the National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation (NHFIC) under strict criteria including competitiveness of home-loan offerings, geographic reach and readiness to meet scheme implem­entation timelines.

NHFIC’s other key evaluation criteria included “the reputation of the respondent”.

The government will now choose from either Commonwealth Bank or ANZ to join the scheme with NAB, giving the banks get access to up to 5000 eligible first home buyers per year.

Westpac insiders told The Australian it had expected to be approved as the second major ­lender but now understood the embattled financial institution would be excluded from the scheme, which starts on January 1.

The scheme, one of Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s key pledges at the May 18 election, provides a guarantee allowing first-home buyers on low and middle incomes to buy with a depos­it of as little as 5 per cent.

The big banks will only be entitled to receive up to half of the 10,000 guarantees allocated per financial year.

There will also be a range of non-major lenders appointed to the lending panel.

Loan applications for the scheme are not yet open.



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