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Is 5 percent enough to save for your first home?

Is 5 percent enough to save for your first home?

First home buyers entering the property market would be wise to consider saving at least 10 percent of the purchase price, despite most lenders now requiring just 5 percent down payment.

Around two-thirds of home loans monitored by RateCity offer 95 percent loan-to-value ratios (LVRs) – or just 5 percent deposit – levels not seen since pre-GFC.

While this type of loan may seem attractive because a smaller deposit is required, there may be additional upfront costs involved in buying a home that you need to factor into your savings plan.

How much should you save?
When applying for a home loan most lenders set a maximum LVR, which determines how much you can borrow in relation to the price of the property. For instance, to be eligible for a home loan with an LVR of 95 percent, you’ll be required to put down a deposit of 5 percent.

There are other costs to consider too. Expenses such as stamp duty, lenders mortgage insurance and establishment fees are just some of the additional funds you will need to outlay before purchasing a home. And some of these fees may be more expensive if you have a smaller deposit.

For a first home buyer, RateCity estimates these costs can equate to $15,000 and around $20,000 for other buyers, depending on where and when you buy. Therefore first home buyers purchasing property valued at $300,000 would need to save at least $30,000.

How to get there, fast

The good news is that you may be able to reduce some of these additional costs, which means you won’t have to save as much if you follow some of these steps:

  • Lower your property purchase budget. Some states across Australia offer exemptions or discounts on stamp duty depending on how much you want to borrow.
  • First home buyers grant. First home buyers may be eligible to receive a grant depending on where you live.
  • Setup a savings account. To help your money grow faster setup a high interest savings account with an automatic savings plan, so your funds are automatically deposited into the account regularly.

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Learn more about home loans

Can I get a NAB first home loan?

The First Home Loan Deposit Scheme of NAB helps first home buyers purchase a property sooner by reducing the upfront costs required. This scheme is offered based on a Government-backed initiative, with10,000 available places announced in October 2020.

Suppose your application for the NAB first home buyer loan is successful. In that case, you’ll only need to pay a low deposit, between 5 and 20 per cent of the property value and won’t be asked to pay lender's mortgage insurance (LMI). You’ll also receive a limited guarantee from the Australian government to purchase the property.

If you’re applying for the NAB first home buyer home loan as an individual, you need to have earned less than $125,000 in the last financial year. Couples applying for the NAB first home loan need to have earned less than $200,000 to be eligible. To be considered a couple, you need to be married or in a de facto relationship. A parent and child, siblings or friends are not considered a couple when applying for a NAB first home loan.

The NAB First Home Loan Deposit Scheme is currently offered only to purchase a brand new property, rather than an established property.

Can first home buyers apply for an ING home loan?

First home buyers can apply for an ING home loan, but first, they need to select the most suitable home loan product and calculate the initial deposit on their home loan. 

First-time buyers can also use ING’s online tool to estimate the amount they can borrow. ING offers home loan applicants a free property report to look up property value estimates. 

First home loan applicants struggling to understand the terms used may consider looking up ING’s first home buyer guide. Once the home buyer is ready to apply for the loan, they can complete an online application or call ING at 1800 100 258 during regular business hours.

Where can I get all the information about an ANZ first home buyer’s loan?

As a first home buyer, you may require help and hand-holding, and as such ANZ has the buying your first home section on its website full of important information. ANZ also has a form in this section you can fill out to get a free consultation from an ANZ First Home Coach and create your own plan for buying your first home. This coach will help you understand where your current income is being spent and plan for your home loan repayments. You’ll get a clear picture of the costs involved in purchasing a property and how to budget or save for these costs. The coach will help you understand different deposit options and manage your accounts to enhance your savings.

There are three types of ANZ first home loans - Standard Variable, Fixed, and Equity Manager. The features, interest rates, and terms for each are different, and you can compare them here.

When they apply for an ANZ home loan, first home buyers can also get guidance on applying for the First Home Owner Grant (FHOG). This is a one-off government grant that may be available to you when you’re buying your first home. The eligibility criteria for FHOG differs between the different states and territories, which is why it’s helpful to have expert advice when applying.

How can I apply for a first home buyers loan with Commonwealth Bank?

Getting a home loan requires planning and research. If you are considering a home loan with the Commonwealth Bank, you can find the information you need in the buying your first home section of the bank’s website.

You can see the steps you should take before applying for the loan and use the calculators to work out how much you can borrow, what your monthly repayments would be and the upfront costs you’d likely pay.

You can also book a time with a Commonwealth first home loan specialist by calling 13 2221.

CommBank publishes a property report that may help you understand the real estate market. The bank has also created a CommBank Property App that you can use to search for property.  The link to download this app is available on the same webpage.

If you are eligible for the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme, CommBank will help you process your application. The scheme helps first home buyers to purchase a home with a low deposit. You can read details about this scheme here and speak with a CommBank home lending specialist to understand your options.