There are tons of options to think about when choosing a home loan, from the current interest rate to whether you prefer a fixed or variable rate mortgage.
But the features that you can include as part of your home loan are also an important thing to bear in mind. The right features can make the process of monitoring and repaying your loan smooth and straightforward – and can even save you money in the long-term.
Pay off your loan faster
Certain home loans have features that allow you to pay off the balance faster than the terms set out in your agreement with your lender.
Over the long-term, extra repayments can save you thousands of dollars of interest, and shave years off the term of your loan. Some features you may wish to bear in mind include the ability to make extra repayments whenever you like, or changing your payment frequency.
For example, making fortnightly payments instead of monthly ones can help you pay an additional month's worth of mortgage repayments every year – after all, there are only 12 months in a year, but 26 fortnights!
Use your home loan to consolidate your debts
Some home loans will allow you to consolidate your other debts into one single payment – and best of all, the interest rate is often lower as a result. If you already have a personal loan, credit card or car loan – and you are disciplined about your finances – this can be a useful solution.
Offset your loan
Have you considered that the money you have in other accounts can be used to reduce your mortgage? Ask your broker about 100 per cent offset accounts.
These handy options let you make efficient use of every cent you have and allow you to use the balance of your cheque or savings account to offset your mortgage. Ask your broker about your various offset options – there's bound to be one that works well for you.
DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article is correct at the time of publishing and is subject to change. It is intended to be of a general nature only. It has been prepared without taking into account any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, Smartline recommends that you consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances. Smartline recommends that you seek independent legal, financial, and taxation advice before acting on any information in this article.