Millennials want homes, but don’t understand basic deposit requirements

author-avatar By on October 10, 2019
Millennials want homes, but don’t understand basic deposit requirements

Photo by Drobot Dean via Adobe Stock

57% of millennials have never heard of Lenders Mortgage Insurance and some don’t know it’s possible to get a home loan with less than 20% deposit.

Those are the findings from a study released by Gateway Bank and Genworth Insurance that surveyed 2,127 millennials across Australia.

The Millennial Home Ownership survey found that while the majority (94%) of millennials consider home ownership important to them, many don’t understand the basic requirements of getting a home loan.

Currently, 58% of millennials are saving up for a deposit but almost the same amount (57%) claim they have never even heard of Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI).

Of those who had heard of LMI, nearly a quarter (23%) were unaware that LMI would allow them to buy a home with less than a 20% deposit.

Low levels of awareness may be the reason why almost a third (31%) of respondents don’t think they would qualify for a mortgage and why a majority (58%) believe they can’t afford the deposit yet.

Interestingly, 36% of those who were aware of LMI didn’t know this could be built into their home loan and paid as part of their regular mortgage repayments.

Genworth CEO and Managing Director, Georgette Nicholas said it’s important to make sure millennials are aware of all the options available to them, and that they don’t necessarily need to delay buying a home for a decade to save the elusive 20%.

“We understand the challenges millennials face in saving the 20% deposit typically required by lenders. For more than 50 years we have been working with our lenders to help young Australians secure a home loan sooner, with less than a 20% deposit, thereby enabling them to save on rent and achieve their dream of home ownership,” Mr Nicholas said.

It follows research from property analyst CoreLogic which also found an alarming number of Australians were unaware that banks can lend without a 20% deposit.

Despite this, the number of loans to first home buyers has risen by 5.2%, marking the strongest rise this year, according to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today.

Compared to the same time last year, the number of first home buyer loans is up 8%.

Falling interest rates on savings accounts making it harder to maximise deposit savings

Not being able to save for a house deposit remains the top barrier to home ownership and plummeting interest rates on savings accounts aren’t helping.

ING recently cut the maximum interest rate on its Savings Maximiser account made popular by the Barefoot Investor by 25 basis points to 1.95% p.a.

Prior to June’s cash rate cut, ING had one of the highest interest rates on savings accounts in the market, at 2.80% p.a.

With a rate of 2.80% p.a., you would have accumulated over $4,000 in interest (if you deposited $1,000 a month for five years). In comparison, with an interest rate of 1.95% p.a., you would only earn just over $2,000 in interest if you deposited the same amount.

Lexi Airey, CEO at Gateway Bank said while economic and market conditions have made it harder to enter the property market, it’s still achievable.

“Those in the position to get a helping hand from their relatives might want to consider a Family Pledge home loan, which can accelerate their journey to owning a home,” Ms Airey said.

“Additionally, first home buyers should look into the government’s First Home Owners Grant initiative and check to see if they’re available for stamp duty concessions.”

While savings account interest rates are falling, so are the interest rates on home loans – which is good news for everyone with a variable home loan.

The table below displays some of the sharpest variable home loan rates Savings.com.au has found on offer across the big four banks, the top 10 customer-owned institutions and the larger non-banks:

Lender
Advertised rate Comparison rate Monthly repayment Rate TypeOffsetRedrawOngoing FeeUpfront FeesLVRLump Sum RepaymentAdditional RepaymentsPre-approval
VariableMore details
LIMITED TIME OFFER

Smart Booster Home Loan Discounted Variable - 2yr (LVR < 80%)

  • Fast turnaround times, can meet 30-day settlement
  • For purchase and refinance, min 20% deposit
  • No ongoing or monthly fees, add offset for 0.10%
LIMITED TIME OFFER

Smart Booster Home Loan Discounted Variable - 2yr (LVR < 80%)

  • Fast turnaround times, can meet 30-day settlement
  • For purchase and refinance, min 20% deposit
  • No ongoing or monthly fees, add offset for 0.10%
VariableMore details
AN EASY ONLINE APPLICATION

Yard Home Loan (Principal and Interest) (Special) (LVR < 70%)

  • Unlimited additional repayments
  • Unlimited free redraws
  • Optional 100% offset can be added for $120 p.a.^
AN EASY ONLINE APPLICATION

Yard Home Loan (Principal and Interest) (Special) (LVR < 70%)

  • Unlimited additional repayments
  • Unlimited free redraws
  • Optional 100% offset can be added for $120 p.a.^
FixedMore details
NO UPFRONT OR ONGOING FEES

Basic Home Loan Fixed (Principal and Interest) (LVR < 70%) 3 Years

NO UPFRONT OR ONGOING FEES

Base criteria of: a $400,000 loan amount, variable, fixed, principal and interest (P&I) home loans with an LVR (loan-to-value) ratio of at least 80%. However, the ‘Compare Home Loans’ table allows for calculations to made on variables as selected and input by the user. All products will list the LVR with the product and rate which are clearly published on the Product Provider’s web site. Monthly repayments, once the base criteria are altered by the user, will be based on the selected products’ advertised rates and determined by the loan amount, repayment type, loan term and LVR as input by the user/you. Rates correct as of October 19, 2021. View disclaimer.


Disclaimers

The entire market was not considered in selecting the above products. Rather, a cut-down portion of the market has been considered which includes retail products from at least the big four banks, the top 10 customer-owned institutions and Australia’s larger non-banks:

  • The big four banks are: ANZ, CBA, NAB and Westpac
  • The top 10 customer-owned Institutions are the ten largest mutual banks, credit unions and building societies in Australia, ranked by assets under management in November 2020. They are (in descending order): Great Southern Bank, Newcastle Permanent, Heritage Bank, Peoples’ Choice Credit Union, Teachers Mutual Bank, Greater Bank, IMB Bank, Beyond Bank, Bank Australia and P&N Bank.
  • The larger non-bank lenders are those who (in 2020) has more than $9 billion in Australian funded loans and advances. These groups are: Resimac, Pepper, Liberty and Firstmac.
  • If you click on a product link and you are referred to a Product or Service Provider’s web page, it is highly likely that a commercial relationship exists between that Product or Service Provider and Savings.com.au

Some providers' products may not be available in all states. To be considered, the product and rate must be clearly published on the product provider's web site.

In the interests of full disclosure, Savings.com.au, Performance Drive and Loans.com.au are part of the Firstmac Group. To read about how Savings.com.au manages potential conflicts of interest, along with how we get paid, please click through onto the web site links.

*Comparison rate is based on a loan of $150,000 over a term of 25 years. Please note the comparison rate only applies to the examples given. Different loan amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees and costs savings, such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan.

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author-avatar
Emma Duffy is Assistant Editor at Your Mortgage and  Your Investment Property Mag, which are part of the Savings Media Group. In this role, she manages a team of journalists and expert contributors committed to keeping readers informed about the latest home loan and finance news and trends, as well as providing in-depth property guides. She is also a finance journalist at Savings.com.au which she joined shortly after its launch in early 2019. Emma has a Bachelor in Journalism and has been published in several other publications and been featured on radio.

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