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Home Loan FAQs

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Below is a list of answers to some of our members most frequently asked Home Loan-related questions.

If you have a question of your own that is not covered below, then please contact us today.

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  Do I need to be a member?

Anyone can enquire or apply for a loan with us - you don't have to be a member at the time. You will need to become a member when you take out the loan. We are a mutual financial services organisation whose shareholders are its members, and you must be a member before you can take up a product or service with us.

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  How much can I borrow?

The amount you can borrow is dependent on the type of loan you apply for. The actual amount you can borrow is, however, determined by your ability to meet the repayments of the loan and the value of the loan security.

Loan Repayment calculator
  What is a comparison rate?

The Comparison Rate is an indicative interest rate that is designed to help you identify the 'true cost' of a loan. It takes into account the interest rate and any 'ascertainable fees and charges' that relate in an attempt to express some of the costs of a loan into a single rate. 'Ascertainable fees and charges' are those that are definitely payable during the life of the loan - such as application fees, monthly or annual charges, cost of valuation and legal fees.

What isn't included?

The Comparison Rate does not include fees and charges that may occur or are based on some future 'event' - such as redraw, early termination fees, progress payments or fees charged by some institutions when you decide to switch lenders. In addition, government and statutory charges are not included - as these are standard irrespective of the type of loan or who the lender is. So, whilst the Comparison Rate is a useful tool for comparing the cost of different loans, it should be remembered that it doesn't provide the total picture.

What to bear in mind? 

It's important to consider all the features and benefits of the loan - rather than only focusing on the Comparison Rate. A Comparison Rate does not take into account all the factors that should be considered when comparing different loan offers from different financial institutions/lenders. Benefits such as redraw, 100% offset and the ability to make additional repayments/flexible repayment periods are not included within a Comparison Rate - but they can make a difference to the attractiveness of a loan.

  How do I stay informed?

Statements are issued every six months. More frequent or duplicate statements can be requested at any time from our office. Account information is also available 24/7 through our Mobile Banking App, Internet Banking and Phone Banking services.

  What costs do I need to consider?

Deposit

The biggest initial cost is the deposit. This will range from 5% to 30% of the value of the property depending on the type of loan you require.

Property purchase stamp duty & registration fees

Property purchase stamp duty is a form of government tax and is calculated on the market value of the property or the purchase price, whichever is greater. You may be exempted or eligible for a concession, please contact your solicitor/conveyancer.

In addition, whenever a property changes hands, the change of ownership must be recorded with the appropriate State Titles Office. A document known as a Transfer of Land must be lodged, the cost of which varies in each State/Territory. Please contact your solicitor/conveyancer who should perform this task on your behalf. 

Legal Fees

Legal expenses for the average home purchase include (indicative only):

  • Solicitor fees (between $500 - $2000)
  • Survey and building certificate ($450)
  • Building inspection and pest report ($400 - $500)
  • Property Valuation ($220 - $500)

Searches and inspections

Contracts should never be exchanged until the necessary searches and inspections have been completed. Searches and inspections may include the following:

Title search

A Certificate of Title obtained from the Titles Office by your solicitor/conveyancer provides details of who owns the property and who else has an interest in it. This is a good way to research if there are any mortgages, caveats, restrictive covenants etc on the property which would affect the transfer of title.

Building inspection and pest report

The report completed by your building inspector will detail any building flaws, e.g. structural issues with the building or roof, damp etc. The pest report should detail any evidence of pest infestation. It will enable you to assess the cost of any required treatment.

  How do I make repayments?

You can arrange to make your loan repayments either by:

  • payroll deduction; or
  • scheduled transfer from your savings or transaction account.

If you want to make payments in addition to your agreed monthly payment, you can make payments:

  What security is required?

Your loan must be secured by a registered mortgage over a residential property.

  What if I get sick or lose my job?

The best way to obtain peace of mind that your repayment obligations will be met in the case of accident, illness or involuntary unemployment is to take out Loan Repayment Insurance.

Loan Repayment Insurance
  Do I need to take out insurance?

Lenders Mortgage Insurance will be required if the amount of your loan exceeds 80% of the valuation or purchase price, whichever the lesser.

Building Insurance is required to be taken out equal to the amount stated in the recommendation on the property valuation.

You can take out Loan Repayment Insurance on your loan for your peace of mind. This insurance is designed to cover your lending obligations in the case of sickness, accident or involuntary unemployment. Although you do not have to purchase your insurance through us, we do offer a range of insurance policies to suit your needs.

  Loan Repayment Insurance

Loan Repayment Insurance provides you with the peace of mind that if any unfortunate event, such as your death, disability, involuntary unemployment or trauma occurs, your assets will be safe and your loan repayments will be taken care of.

Loan Repayment Insurance
  First Home Owner's grant

The First Home Owner Grant is a government incentive and was established to assist eligible first home owners to purchase a new home or build their home. For eligible transactions made on or after 1st January 2016, the grant amount is $10,000. For eligible transactions made between 1 October 2012 and 31 December 2015, the grant amount is $15,000. The grant is useful as it can be used to offset the cost of stamp duty.

What is a new home?

A new home:

  • has not been previously occupied;
  • has not been previously sold as a residence; and
  • has been substantially renovated and a home built to replace demolished premises.

Am I eligible?

To be eligible for the $10,000 grant:

  • the contract date must be on or after 1 January 2016;
  • the home is a brand new home;
  • you are over 18; and
  • you or your partner have never held a relevant interest in any residential property in Australia prior to 1 July 2000.

For full information about whether you will or will not be eligible for the First Home Owners grant visit http://www.osr.nsw.gov.au/grants/fhog


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