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Mortgage Advice Blog

Get the latest news and tips about mortgage finance and the property market. Scott Miller, mortgage broker from Advanced Mortgage Solutions comments on housing and lending.

February's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Thursday, February 01, 2018 in

Getting Off on the Right Foot This February

If January has been any indication, it looks likely the February and 2018 is going to bring good news for home buyers! With residential sales in Christchurch going well and with the average house growth price the lowest in recent years, first home buyers and investors are reaping the rewards. But there is more good news on the horizon and we’ve compiled it all here for you.

2018 is Looking Good So Far

 From January 2018, loan to value ratio restrictions have been eased. This has resulted in a move upwards from 10% to 15% of a lender’s new mortgage lending can be given to owner occupiers where their LTV is more than 80%. This means you may now be able to get that home with a less than 20% deposit. Check out our guide on getting a mortgage with a low deposit for more information.

First home buyers now have more housing stock to choose from when purchasing their home. With the average house in Christchurch having risen only 1% in value over the last year, they are no longer facing the enormous burden of saving for an ever-increasing deposit while paying rent. This has also seen some property investors selling stock in some areas to purchase where there is more growth. As a result, there is significant stock on the market, meaning less competition with other purchasers to raise prices in bidding wars.

Buying a house - what insurance do I need?

Recently I picked up my daughter from a shift as a checkout chick at the supermarket (I don’t recall why I was the taxi driver!). Anyway, to my surprize she greeted me with a beaming smile and exclaimed “how wonderful it is to be back at work”.

The statement “how wonderful to be at work” grabbed my attention as I considered that’s not something you here people saying, however it is what all working people should be thinking.  Being able to work and generate income is our greatest asset, without it the ability to get by can be severely challenged. (In the previous 2 months my daughter was diagnosed with glandular fever, therefore was not able to work at all.)

No matter what you do for a job, where you are in life, there’s always a requirement to protect yourself and your loved ones. Life can change so unexpectedly – you have no idea when you’ll “need” insurance. This is why it’s important to do some advanced planning.

In New Zealand we are privileged to have ACC, however it only applies to accidental injuries. ACC will cover up to 80% of your “taxable income” but ACC does not pay anything if you become ill and cannot work or die from disease. Degenerative conditions that haven’t been caused by your work are also not covered. There are other government benefits, but these are not related to what you earn, e.g. a Sickness Benefit of $229.01 per week if you are single, or $381.68 for couples; ACC and the Sickness Benefit are taxable.

When you think of the time, effort and money involved in buying a house, it makes sense to protect the source of income that will sustain it.

For most, our homes will be one of the bigger financial commitments we undertake, you need to ensure that it’s protected from the unexpected. This protection can be achieved by having suitable insurance in place that will assist and provide you with a level of comfort when the unexpected happens.

Cover your income - ensure that in the event you become disabled or sick and cannot work or earn an income for a period of time, you can continue with mortgage repayments and the associated costs of owning a house.

Protect the people who live in the house. Life insurance should allow the family unit to stay in the house if anything were to happen to you.

Insure your home and know what your policy insures you for, more importantly, what it doesn't. This insurance will allow you to repair or rebuild your home if anything happens.

Decide on the type and term of your mortgage so you can factor in the costs of insurance from the beginning.

Protecting Your Family & Assets in 2018

If the worst happens, are you prepared? Having house, contents, car and mortgage protection insurance ensures your assets can be replaced if destroyed, lost or damaged. Our team of insurance specialists are here to help, and we welcome the opportunity to check over your current insurance and advise you on how you can best protect the things you value the most.


January's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 in

Will 2018 be a year of change?


Happy New Year! We’re looking forward to helping our clients achieve their property goals this year, including you! 2018 is set to be a year of change, with the implementation of new policies which will affect the property market.

Reserve Bank to Ease LVR Restrictions

From 1 January 2018, the Reserve Bank is easing up on the loan to value ratio restrictions. Banks will be able to lend up to 15% of new mortgage lending to owner occupiers who have less than a 20% deposit. In addition, 5% of a bank’s new mortgage lending can be to residential property investors who have a 35% or less deposit.

If you’re a first home buyer or investor who’d like to take advantage of the easing of LVR restrictions, give us a call today on 0508 466 356.

Changes to the Responsible Lending Code

Amendments to the Responsible Lending Code came into play in June 2017. Lenders are required to follow the Act and must:

  • Be satisfied the borrower can pay the loan without hardship and the loan meets their needs
  • Be accurate in their advertising and contracts to not be misleading
  • Act reasonable and ethically in all dealings
  • Not to use oppression
  • Meet all other legal obligations to their borrowers

You can find out more detail about these amendments by heading to the Ministry of Business and Innovation’s website.

Have You Made the Correct Tax Declarations?

If you are receiving income from or living overseas, it’s important you have made the correct tax declarations. You need to let the IRD know what your tax residency is because NZ residents are required to pay tax on their worldwide income. You can learn about this on the  IRD website and avoid any nasty tax surprises.

Will a Capital Gains Tax Happen?

The Labour Party campaigned on introducing a Capital Gains Tax, but have since said that no new taxes will be introduced until 2020. In the meantime, the Government has established a Working Tax Group to assess the implementation of such a tax.

This will not affect residential owner occupier properties, but rather investment property owners. According to the Labour Party website, the Working Group will “focus on measures that will address the imbalance in taxation on gains from speculation in property and income from other sources.” (Labour Party Website).

We’d be more than happy to discuss the implements such a tax may have on you. Fill in our Contact

Is Ring Fencing on the Way In?

The Labour Government has signalled an end to negative gearing of rental properties. This means investors will no longer be able to offset losses from one property onto other income. Instead investors will have to ring fence losses to individual properties, which is set to hit investors who own multiple properties the hardest. It is estimated this will lose investors around 20% of their loss tax deductibility each year.

Once again, from all of us at Advanced Mortgage Solutions, Happy New Year! We look forward to working with you throughout the year.

December's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Monday, December 04, 2017 in

Happy Holidays from All of Us!

December has arrived, and the Christmas holidays are now on the radar. With the warmer days, the Advanced Mortgage Solutions team are looking forward to spending time with our families and loved ones over the Christmas break. Our office will be closed from the 22nd December to the 8th January and we are looking forward to helping our clients achieve their property dreams in 2018.

We Welcome Shane Blummont to the Team

We’d like to take the opportunity to welcome Shane Blummont to the Advanced Mortgage Solutions team. Shane is our new Insurance Broker and with over 30 years in the industry, we’re thrilled he’s jumped on board with us.

Shane’s expertise is with life, trauma, income protection, fire and general insurance. He also has experience working for some of the country’s large insurance companies and providing insurance advise in a banking context.

Shane would love to have a chat with you about you and your family’s insurance needs and help provide you with the insurance solutions which best suit your needs. Give Shane a call on 03 662 9058 or send him an email at shane@aisnz.co.nz to book a time for a chat.

Loan to Value Ratio Restrictions Are Easing

The Reserve Bank has announced an easing of the loan to value ratios from January 2018. Currently banks are only able to have 10% of their lending allocated to buyers with less than a 20% deposit. This is being raised to 15% for first home buyers who have less than a 20% deposit.

That is great news for first home buyers and if you’re one, you need to contact us today! We’ll work with you to find the right loan to suit your circumstances and help you get the home of your dreams. Head to our website now for more information on how we can help you into your first home.

From all of us here at Advanced Mortgage Solutions, we wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a happy and safe New Year.

November's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Thursday, November 09, 2017 in

Should we expect property changes from Labour?

The new Labour, Greens and New Zealand First government is up and running. Should we be worried about the changes they will implement regarding property? Or will the changes go in our favour?

Since taking office, the new government has already laid out some policy changes around property, including:

  • Restricting ownership to foreign buyers
  • Not introducing a capital gains tax to land or building of the family home
  • Fast tracking of the Healthy Homes Guarantee Bill
  • Removal of negative gearing
  • Extension to five years of the bright line test
  • Changes to rental property agreements, geared at helping tenants, not landlords

So far property statistics have shown both buyers are sellers are not too concerned with the policy changes. Sales for October were only slightly down and while house prices have dropped in some areas, there is currently not enough information to predict what will happen.

If you’re concerned regarding your home or proposed purchase, come and talk with us. We’ll discuss with you any potential issues you’ll need to be aware of and tailor a plan which will suit your circumstances perfectly!

Vodafone is Changing! Have You Updated Us?

If you currently have a Vodafone run email address, it’s going to change. This is because they are no longer supporting their email service from 30 November 2017 due to ongoing issues with it. If you have one of these email addresses, please tell us your new address so you can continue to hear from us:

  • vodafone.co.nz
  • vodafone.net.nz
  • ihug.co.nz
  • wave.co.nz
  • quik.co.nz
  • pcconnect.co.nz
  • paradise.net.nz
  • clear.net.nz
  • es.co.nz

In the build up to Christmas, things can get hectic! At Advanced Mortgage Solutions, things are humming along, but we still have time for you! Drop in to see us – we’d love to chat with you over a cuppa!

October'r Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Tuesday, October 03, 2017 in

How will the election affect interest rates?

Which parties will make up our new Government? It’s the question on everyone’s lips and the party leaders don’t seem to be giving anything away. The uncertainty has certainly put a stop to many people making large decisions until a new Government has been formed. But how will it affect interest rates?

Should We Be Concerned About Interest Rates?

We don’t think so. Our option at Advanced Mortgage Solutions is that we don’t think interest rates will be changed much by the result. This is because the NZ currency is remaining quite stable.

This is echoed through the Interest.co.nz website where they said, “In the very short-term until 7 October at least, whilst we have a political impasse/vacuum in New Zealand the Kiwi dollar should remain stable. Once it becomes clear with whom New Zealand First leader, Winston Peters decides to negotiate with first and the outcomes from the policy horse-trading that goes with such post MMP election shenanigans, the Kiwi dollar could go either way depending on what type of government we end up with.”

Bernard Hickey published his opinion about interest rate changes the weekend before the election. His comment was that he does not feel interest rates will rise in the short term, even though the National Party believed they would. The NZ Reserve Bank itself has only forecasted one 25 basis point hike by late 2020 and foreign investors don’t seem to be concerned either.

Get Your Free Interest Rate Review

Everyone likes saving money. We would love you to take the opportunity to have a free interest rate review with our team here at Advanced Mortgage Solutions. Click here to visit our website and book in your time for a chat with us.

September's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Friday, September 01, 2017 in

How to Avoid Paying Extra Mortgage Fees

Interest rates remain low and the Reserve Bank has recently indicated they do not see them rising soon. While this remains great news for new and existing mortgage holders, there is one small catch…

Banks Are Receiving Lower Margins on Interest Repayments

Banks lend borrowers money to make a profit. No one disputes this, and there’s nothing wrong with it. After all, when we take out a mortgage, we borrow someone else’s money to buy a property. In return, we give them money back in the form of repayments and interest. In the past, this has been perfectly okay with the banks as margins between what they purchase the funds for, and then sell them for has been reasonably profitable. They have taken our interest payments as a profit and been satisfied.

Nowadays the problem is that as the interest rates are so low, the banks are not making as much margin as they would like to. They can’t raise their own interest rates as that would make them less competitive, reducing the number of new borrowers they attract. So instead, they have been reintroducing the ability of charging a fee to new borrowers when they take out a mortgage, or a restructure fee for existing clients looking to change their existing loan structures.

With a fee ranging from several hundred dollars up to a thousand dollars, it’s something borrowers have accepted as part of getting a mortgage. We disagree.

Don’t Pay Extra Fees. Here’s How …

As mortgage brokers, we know the ins and outs of all the lending products on the market. We know which banks charge mortgage establishment fees and which don’t. Before you talk with the bank, talk with us first! It won’t cost you anything – we work for free for you!

If you are not quite sure about the differences between a bank and a broker, then check out our blog and find out which one is best!  Remember, we’re not here to make money from you …

Give us a call on 0508 466 356 or fill in our Contact Page form today.

First Home Buyers Seminar


At the start of August, we were pleased to run a First Home Buyers Seminar in conjunction with Brent Selwyn from Kannangara Thomson, and Kyle Pitman from Harcourts Grenadier. We had a full house of eager first home buyers, armed with plenty of questions around conveyancing, Kiwisaver, and deposit amounts. A big thank you to all who attended and helped make the night a huge success.


Our next First Home Buyers Seminar is being held on the 25th of October. Look out for more details on how to book or reply to this email for more information.


August's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Wednesday, August 02, 2017 in

When Was Your Last Interest Rate Health Check?

Everyone’s talking about interest rates. How much are they? Where can I find the best rates? Should I float or should I fix my mortgage based on interest rate forecasts? Why won’t my bank match another banks rate?

At Advanced Mortgage Solutions, we know interest rates like the back of our hands. Instead of spending hours hunting around the internet and visiting lenders, visit us instead. Whatever interest rate questions you throw at us, we’ll give you the most reliable and up to date answers. As trusted mortgage advisors, we specialise in using everyday language and don’t blindside you with complicated terminology.

Current Interest Rate Trends

A weaker than expected inflation rate has got some economists calling for the Reserve Bank to lower the OCR, especially with house sales dropping around the country. While mortgage borrowing continues to rise in volume, sales have slowed.

But which direction does this leave interest rates heading? Upwards it seems, with major banks Kiwibank and SBS raising their floating rates and TSB it’s two-year fixed rate on 1st August 2017, after a month of limited movement.

When Was Your Last Health Check?

If you are already a client of Advanced Mortgage Solutions then we are already looking after your mortgage to ensure you have the best fit for your needs.

However, we encourage anyone with a mortgage that doesn’t currently use us as their ‘go to’ for mortgage information to contact us for a mortgage health check. It’s important to check your mortgage is working best for you and not the bank. We’re here to offer you a free financial health check this August. Call us on 0508 466 356 or fill in our website contact form to book your spot today.

We can check how your mortgage is working for you, identify any ways we can help you save on repayments, work out how to pay your mortgage off faster and help you decide between a fixed or floating loan. Even better, we can apply on your behalf for discounted interest rates on your existing loan! Book your spot now!

July's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Wednesday, July 12, 2017 in

Choosing Between an Interest Only and a Principal and Interest Home Loan

It’s plain and simple, there is a lot of options out there when it comes to home loans. What’s not so plain or simple is choosing the right one for your circumstances. As mortgage brokers, part of our job is to help you obtain the best mortgage for you and that includes repayments too. We understand the different loans like the back of our hands and want to make sure you do too.

Today we’re looking into the differences between an interest only loan verses a principal and interest loan. Both have their pros and cons and both suit different people at different times in their lives. Let’s dive in and learn some more about them …

What’s an Interest Only Loan?

An interest only loan is when your repayments only pay off the interest your loan has accumulated, not the actual principal or amount you’ve borrowed. This means your loan does not get smaller over time, but you will have smaller repayments to make as principal repayments are not added. The amount of interest you are charged stays the same, as you are no reducing the amount of your loan.

What’s a Principal and Interest Loan?

A principal and interest loan is when your repayments cover the cost of the interest your loan has accumulated, as well as a small piece of the principal. Initially, the principal repayments are very small and the interest large. But as time goes by, your interest is lower as the amount of your loan becomes smaller.

Should I Pick a Principal and Interest Loan or an Interest Only Loan?

First up, you need to consider why you’ve got the loan in the first place. If you are an investor and your rent covers your mortgage with maybe a little left over, you may be quite happy not to reduce the size of your loan. Investors often benefit financially when they sell the property, which they see as the long-term goal.

But if you are a home owner, your goal is often to end up owning your home mortgage free. Obviously the early you repay your loan the better, with less interest being paid overall and being able to keep the loan repayments in your pocket, not your lender’s.

While both loan options are valid choices, the main thing to consider is whether it’s important to you to lower your loan amount or not. If you just pay the interest only, you won’t be gaining equity in your property.

We’d love to chat with you in more detail about the pros and cons of both loan repayment options. One of the things we have help you with is a rapid mortgage reduction. We can show you how to reduce the length of your mortgage, helping you save thousands in interest costs.

Introducing…..Mortgage Interruption Cover

You have a home which is insured, but is your Mortgage Insured? It probably should be, as there are many events in life such as Illnesses, accidents, and job losses which can put your ability to pay your mortgage in jeopardy.

Now, we have a cost-effective and straight-forward solution that does not need intensive medical underwriting and won’t cost you a fortune. And it’s all designed to protect you & your future should something serious occur. 

It’s called Mortgage Interruption Cover, it’s new and it’s potentially a game changer in terms of allowing everyone to have access to cover easily & affordably.

We would like to offer you the opportunity to see how this can benefit you, to find out more please contact us today!

June's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Friday, June 02, 2017 in

Choosing Between an Interest Only & a Principal and Interest Home Loan

It’s plain and simple, there is a lot of options out there when it comes to home loans. What’s not so plain or simple is choosing the right one for your circumstances. As mortgage brokers, part of our job is to help you obtain the best mortgage for you and that includes repayments too. We understand the different loans like the back of our hands and want to make sure you do too.

Today we’re looking into the differences between an interest only loan verses a principal and interest loan. Both have their pros and cons and both suit different people at different times in their lives. Let’s dive in and learn some more about them …

What’s an Interest Only Loan?

An interest only loan is when your repayments only pay off the interest your loan has accumulated, not the actual principal or amount you’ve borrowed. This means your loan does not get smaller over time, but you will have smaller repayments to make as principal repayments are not added. The amount of interest you are charged stays the same, as you are no reducing the amount of your loan.

What’s a Principal and Interest Loan?

A principal and interest loan is when your repayments cover the cost of the interest your loan has accumulated, as well as a small piece of the principal. Initially, the principal repayments are very small and the interest large. But as time goes by, your interest is lower as the amount of your loan becomes smaller.

Should I Pick a Principal and Interest Loan or an Interest Only Loan?

First up, you need to consider why you’ve got the loan in the first place. If you are an investor and your rent covers your mortgage with maybe a little left over, you may be quite happy not to reduce the size of your loan. Investors often benefit financially when they sell the property, which they see as the long-term goal.

But if you are a home owner, your goal is often to end up owning your home mortgage free. Obviously the early you repay your loan the better, with less interest being paid overall and being able to keep the loan repayments in your pocket, not your lender’s.

While both loan options are valid choices, the main thing to consider is whether it’s important to you to lower your loan amount or not. If you just pay the interest only, you won’t be gaining equity in your property.

We’d love to chat with you in more detail about the pros and cons of both loan repayment options. One of the things we have help you with is a rapid mortgage reduction. We can show you how to reduce the length of your mortgage, helping you save thousands in interest costs.

Introducing…..Mortgage Interruption Cover

You have a home which is insured, but is your Mortgage Insured? It probably should be, as there are many events in life such as Illnesses, accidents, and job losses which can put your ability to pay your mortgage in jeopardy.

Now, we have a cost-effective and straight-forward solution that does not need intensive medical underwriting and won’t cost you a fortune. And it’s all designed to protect you & your future should something serious occur. 

It’s called Mortgage Interruption Cover, it’s new and it’s potentially a game changer in terms of allowing everyone to have access to cover easily & affordably.

We would like to offer you the opportunity to see how this can benefit you, to find out more please contact us today!

April's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Friday, March 31, 2017 in

Broker or a Bank? Your Successful Mortgage Guide


Have you noticed that Easter is just around the corner?

We have welcomed many new clients during the past month. Our new clients decided to choose us as their mortgage broker instead of talking to their bank. Let us tell you why …

Why Choose a Broker Over the Bank?

A bank adviser can only sell you products from their bank. While they may offer a few different rates, they cannot offer you the same range of rates or products as a mortgage broker can. A mortgage broker works with many different banks and lending institutions to get you the best deal available.

It’s true that some banks do not offer as many products as other banks. It also gives them the chance to sell additional services, such as insurance, credit cards and personal loans.

A mortgage broker, on the other hand, knows what is happening with the whole market, not just at one bank. They’ll be able to tell you which lenders work best with borrowers who are looking to purchase their first home, an investment property, with bad credit history or who is offering the lowest rates. A broker also does all the leg work for you! After all, it is no fun filling out an application form for every bank you approach.

You can even start applying for your mortgage right now on our website. Head over now to Apply for Your Home Loan.  http://www.advancedmortgagesolutions.co.nz/FAQRetrieve.aspx?ID=50795

Banks Verses Mortgage Brokers – Who Will Win?

It’s the age-old battle, bank verses broker. Which one will you choose?

With banks, it pays to shop around to make the right choice for you. Make appointments, ring them on the phone, send emails and check out their websites. Of course, that all takes time.

Or you could call us instead. We’re your one stop mortgage shop. We’ll do all those emails, phone calls and appointments for you. One of the major benefits of working with us, other than getting you access to the best rates around, is we do all the work for you.

We’ll also work with you towards getting your first home if you are not quite ready. We want you to get the home of your dreams and sometimes a little more planning is required..

Head over to our website and read about the five ways we will make getting the best home loan for you quickly and simply. http://www.advancedmortgagesolutions.co.nz/mortgages-2013 Or if you’re ready to apply now, give us a call now on 0508-466-356 for free and confidential mortgage advice.

Mortgage Protection – Are you covered?

Your home is the most expensive asset you will likely own, and most people wouldn’t dream of not having in insured.

However, the sad reality is that many people who own a home, do not have any income or mortgage protection cover in place to protect themselves for the day when they may be unable to earn an income due to accident or illness.

This is a leading cause of Mortgagee sales in New Zealand, and could be easily avoided with the right protection in place.

Mortgage Protection cover is affordable & is something that everyone with a Mortgage should consider. Talk to us so that we can show you the best options for your situation.


Contact us to get free personal mortgage and home loan advice








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