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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.

May's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Friday, May 01, 2015 in

Changes for First Time Home Buyers.  

Your family could hold the key to your home

Most lenders are now offering an easier way for first-time home buyers to get on the property ladder. You can leverage off your family members’ home equity to get to the required 20% deposit.

For some time now that banks have required a 20% deposits from first-time buyers, however the deposit doesn’t have to be completely savings based, which is usually a struggle for many young people with rising house prices.

Deposit funds can come from:

·         Savings

·         Gift

·         KiwiSaver

·         First home buyers’ subsidy

·         Equity from a family members’ home.


When looking at loan applications banks will also consider the following:

·         Loan affordability

·         Level of existing consumer debt

·         Credit history

·         Age of parents or family member

·         Whether the property used is an owner occupied property or rental

·         Location of the property


The beauty of this initiative is that your family does not have to give ‘cash’ up front, they simply use the equity they have in their home to help you get a foot in the door. They are also not required to make a mortgage repayments, that’s up to the First Home Buyer.

So how does it work?

If you want to buy a house that is on the market for $400,000, but you only have $20,000 saved, this house is currently out of reach for you.

However, if your family can help the mortgage can be structured in such a way that you have two separate loans. Your standard home loan and then another loan that is shared with your family, using their equity. See picture below:


In the example above I have shown a way of paying the equity part of the loan off at an accelerated rate, in this case over 10 years. If you find that this is too expensive then the repayments can be reduced by paying the equity part over 30 years.

To find out more about how this could help you secure your first home, call us today 0508 466 356.

If you have any friends or family that may be interested in finding out more please either forward them this email or refer them to us and we’ll do the rest.


For more detailed information please click here to go through to the Advanced Mortgage Solution Website.


If you want to talk to us about how we can help first time home buyers, give us a call on 0508 466 356.

April's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Wednesday, April 01, 2015 in

As of today (1st April) changes to the KiwiSaver first home buyer packages come into effect. The KiwiSaver First Home Deposit Subsidy has been replaced with a KiwiSaver Home Start Grant. 

Put simply eligible first time homebuyers will now be able to withdraw all of their KiwiSaver savings except the $1,000 kick-start from the government. 

There will also be greater alignment with the KiwiSaver Home Start Grant and Welcome Home Loans for house price caps. The table attached shows the changes.  

 For more detailed information please click here to go through to the Advanced Mortgage Solution Website. 

If you want to talk to us about how we can help first time home buyers, give us a call on 0508 466 356.

March's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Thursday, March 19, 2015 in

People – there is a war out there! A war on lending.  

You may have seen the headlines SBS bank have a ridiculously low fee of 4.99% fixed for five-years. The advertising was a bit ambiguous, stating that you had to be an existing customer of SBS however, this is not the case. At Advanced Mortgage Brokers we can access this deal for you but we have been told by SBS that this rate will be available for a very limited time. If you would like to take advantage of this rate you will be expected to have your transactional accounts with SBS and place your income into this account.

If you want to talk to us about your options, give us a call sooner rather than later. 0508 466 356. 

Floating Rates to remain static 

We are pleased to see that there is currently no movement towards increasing floating rates this year. BNZ Economist Tony Alexander states: 

“The cash rate is likely to remain at 3.5% all this year thus your floating rate borrowing costs won’t change. Next year is a bit different. We suspect that the Reserve Bank will move the cash rate up from 3.5% to 4.00%. But the risk well worth backing is that they do absolutely nothing so you might see no change in your short-term borrowing costs both this year and next.” 

This is good news but with floating rates the risk is always there that they will rise. If you haven’t looked at the structure of your home loans in a while, feel free to contact us we are always happy to have a look at your setup and advise accordingly. 

Tips on buying your first home 

Advanced Mortgage Solutions with the help of will set out some tips to get you on track for buying your first home. 

There is no getting away from it, you will need to save a deposit to buy your first home. Depending on deposit total (by accessing your savings, KiwiSaver, and the First Home Buyers Subsidy), there are many different options available to first home buyers. 

Generally lenders do require 20% deposit, however there are exceptions to every rule such as the Welcome Home Loan. The Welcome Home Loan only requires 10% deposit and you can get help securing this deposit through KiwiSaver withdrawals or gifted by a relative. There are some rules applicants need to be aware of when trying to use the Welcome Home Loan product, so please don’t hesitate to pick the phone and have a chat with us about the process. 

There are also some positive changes to the Welcome Home Loan product that take effect after the 1st of April. We have a first home buyer’s guide that shows a step by step plan on buying your first home. This along with our experience will see you sail through the minefields of obstacles of buying your first home. 

Get into a habit of budgeting and not only will you get into your home much quicker, you’ll find repaying your home loan and covering all of your outgoings a lot less stressful. We also have a number of existing ways of structuring your home loan, enabling you to pay off your mortgage faster and save thousands of dollars in the process.

November's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Thursday, November 13, 2014 in

What you need to know about low deposit loans

With Wednesday’s announcement that Reserve Bank restrictions in regard to loans for those with less than a 20% deposit staying for now, with no changes to policy surrounding this, no doubt there are many thinking home ownership will always be out of reach.

Don’t be totally despondent though as there are options and solutions that may work for you. Banks review their appetite for low deposit lending regularly, particularly around surplus income required to meet their criteria for borrowers in this space. Where you could be declined one month, the next could see an approval based on the banks percentage of loans written and whether that figure is over or under the allowed percentages stipulated by the Reserve Bank.

The competition for borrowers with a 20% deposit is still fierce, and although this may seem unfair to those of you struggling to even get on the property ladder, it actually enhances your chance of financing a home with less than a 20% deposit, as every loan written in the “greater than 20 % deposit” space releases 10% of that loan amount to the pool for low “less than 20% deposit” lenders.

Take it that Mr Smith with a 20% deposit is settling a  $500,000.00 loan this week, that means the low deposit pool now has $50,000.00 available to lend to those who meet the criteria. Some weeks we have seen banks with no funds to lend in this space, so this means that even though there is demand, there is no supply and therefore a decline may not need to be seen so personally as a reflection of your characteristics. It may simply be that there are no funds available and trying again may be the thing to do.

Although this news may not make life less complicated for low deposit borrowers, we need to re-iterate that a large percentage of the clients we are helping are still First Home Buyers, Banks are lending above 80%,  and there are options and solutions around moving forward. In the hope of restoring confidence we have below listed some top tips for sourcing finance and preparing for borrowing in this space.

    • See a Registered Financial Advisor (us) as we have up to date market information, specialise in Home Loans, save you time sitting with all of the lenders and money given discounts we can get, and give direction
    • Operate your accounts well. Keep them within their limits, and avoid dishonours and unarranged overdraft fees
    • Save regularly into an account you don’t touch. If you are saving for separate purposes, have different accounts for each purpose
    • Minimise short term debt. Ask us for advice around whether to repay and reduce your outgoings or leave it in place and therefore have more deposit. One size does not fit all
    • Show stability in your place of work and residence. Moving around a lot, although sometimes unavoidable in Christchurch currently doesn’t give the bank confidence in finding you if things go wrong
    • Sign up for Kiwisaver and enrol your kids. There are First Home options and benefits for being a member. Ask us how and what
    • Ask for advice from us  in regard to support from family. There are guarantee and surety loan options available to those who have family willing to assist

As always it’s better to know how you can get there if it it’s not right now, and as always we are here to help.

The property market has certainly picked up over spring, however there is a lot of comment around the LVR restrictions imposed by the Reserve Bank in October 2013, and its effectiveness in dampening the market.

The LVR restrictions imposed were designed to slow the market and reduce the exposure of first home buyers if the market was to fall.  In September 2013, 80% + LVR lending accounted for 25% of all lending, and this was expected to climb.  The restrictions meant that 80% + LVR lending could not exceed 10% of a lender’s total loans.  The result is that 80% + LVR lending is now running at 8.4% of total lending.

As a result of the restrictions, those most affected were first home buyers who had trouble raising sufficient deposit to enter the market.  This in turn opened the door to property investors as there was less competition for homes in the lower price ranges.  Property investors were able to increase their portfolios at the expense of first home buyers.

In the meantime property values have continued to rise bringing into question the Reserve Bank’s decision to impose LVR restrictions.  However there has until now been a cooling of the market in relation to new listings that may be due to restrictions in the LVR.

If the LVR restrictions were to continue, this would further exacerbate the plight of first home buyers who have been shut out of the market.  Young couples without sufficient deposits would be facing a lifetime of renting, which was not the original intention.  Alternatively both lenders and borrowers have become more creative in structuring loans around security offered by generous parents.

There is speculation that the lending restrictions will be relaxed and this is the subject of a select committee hearing to be heard on 11 November.

The general feeling in the market is that the LVR restrictions have not had the desired impact, and that market forces will create a more level playing field in future.  Markets adapt and we are seeing development on the fringe of our larger cities, like the new builds in Pokeno south of the Bombay Hill.  We may see a growing trend of the baby boomers cashing up and moving to the provinces.  This could ultimately stabilize prices as more properties come to market for this reason.

We are seeing the resurrection of some less desirable areas as people focus on value for money and quality of housing stock.  Ex state housing areas offer solid homes in handy areas.  In Pomare in the Hutt Valley complete blocks of state housing have been demolished to make way for new builds at competitive prices. 

Those returning from overseas or migrating to New Zealand will always create a demand for property in areas of high employment.

It is, as always, a question of supply and demand.  This over time will have a levelling effect, and is an effective way in self-regulating the market, rather than Reserve Bank intervention. 

October's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Monday, October 20, 2014 in

Are you a “Kiwi” Saver?

Last week was Money Week - An opportunity for all New Zealanders to stop and take stock of their financial goals.

As a country, our appetite for trying to understand all things financial is a bit lacking and we could all do with being a little more interested and informed and therefore help ourselves to take control of our financial futures. This includes understanding how to structure our lending to make it work for us and reduce it faster, and how we save.

As specialist Registered Financial Advisers we are consistently looking to extend our products and services to our new and existing clients without compromising the specialist advice and service we provide.. Along with the recent addition of a Registered Financial Advisor, Bennen Lewis, who specialises in providing risk products, we have all recently undertaken training on providing our clients with class advice in regard to Kiwisaver.  We outsource our products we provide which allows us to have variety, options and specialist companies to use that meet our client’s needs best.

It was interesting to learn that a larger proportion of Kiwisaver contributors are “parked” in a default scheme, initially set up through their employer. Being enrolled in a scheme, certainly has its benefits but many don’t know that the default providers are limited to seven and that there are other options that once you are enrolled and contributing would be beneficial to consider.

Some of the questions you may like to consider are;

Who is your current provider and are they Kiwisaver specialists or a “Jack of All Trades” providing a huge number of products and services to clients by making it easy to have everything in a “one stop shop”?

  • Is my provider proactively or passively managing my investment?
  • What are my provider’s service, fees and returns?
  • What fund am I in and does it suit the type of Investor I am?
  • Is my fund provider New Zealand owned and operated or offshore?
  • Does my provider offer a life stages option where my investment fund is changed based on my age?
  • Do I understand that my Kiwisaver funds are held by Public Trust, as Supervisor of your investment no matter my scheme?

How many of us have opted in and simply forgotten about it?

Taken the following statistics it is something we shouldn't have!


Both investors start saving at age 20 on salaries of $30,000.00 pa each and remain employed until retirement age of 65. No withdrawals are made.

Their salaries grow by 3% pa and they earn 4% or 6% pa return after tax, fees and expenses. Inflation is assumed to average 2% pa

The investors and their employers each contribute 3% if the investor’s before tax pay into the investors Kiwisaver account

The employer’s contributions are net of employer’s superannuation contribution tax at current rates.      

Post Election Market

The election result is now known and the status quo remains with pre-election nervousness disappearing.  This should inject some confidence back into the housing market as things such as a capital gains tax are not likely to come to fruition for the time being, and those that were waiting to see what happened can now move forward.

There was a pre-election lull in relation to new home consents and market commentators are expecting activity to pick up before the end of the year.  Strong demand for homes in Auckland and Canterbury are expected to drive demand for the building sector in the next couple of years.  It is interesting to note a rise in consents for new apartments.  These consents have risen form 4% in 2010 to now make up 12% of total consents.  This figure is buoyed by growth in the retirement village sector.

The Reserve Bank made no change to the Official Cash Rate in September, with the next review due 31 October.  This provides ongoing stability to the market, and we have seen the continuation of some good fixed interest mortgage interest rates especially for one and two years.

There is some relaxation from the banks in relation to lending criteria creating more interest from first home buyers and increased confidence generally.

A softening of the New Zealand dollar may also provide stimulation to the market as residential property becomes more affordable to those returning home from overseas or migrating to New Zealand.

All in all, with the election behind us and some positive signals from the lenders, and hopefully some good weather as well, we see the market picking up over the spring and summer.

The Main Centres

The Auckland region as a whole saw residential property values increase by 1.8% over the past three months and 10.3% year on year. Whilst values are still rising, the rate of growth has decreased significantly, probably due the effect of the winter and the build up to the election.  Spring traditionally provides buoyancy back to the market with increased listings and buyer interest.

Residential property values in Hamilton City decreased by 0.9% over the past three months, however they have increased 2.7% year on year. In Tauranga City home values have remained stable with a 0.0% change over the past three months but they have increased 4.5% year on year.  The Tauranga market benefits from migration from Auckland and Christchurch.

Home values in the Wellington Region are still showing a slight downward trend, decreasing 0.9% over the past three months and values across the region as a whole are up only 0.3% since September last year.

In Christchurch City home values have increased 0.3% over the past three months and they are 5.1% higher than in August last year. Home values in Dunedin City have increased by 0.3% over the past three months and 1.7% year on year.
The Regions

Values in the provincial centres are variable while many are decreasing or flat and there are a few areas where residential property values have increased. Fonterra’s lower dairy pay out may have an impact on the housing market in the provincial areas.

September's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Friday, September 12, 2014 in

Decisions, decisions, decisions. 

Wouldn't it be great if we knew the perfect thing to do each time we were faced with a major decision that affects our lives!

Just like the looming election where we need to make a choice, at times we feel unprepared to do so and simply therefore, go for what's familiar, comfortable and easy without really investigating the fine print, the big picture or where may find ourselves in a few years. 

Buying a home, business or business premises and borrowing a substantial amount of money is another one of those major decision making processes where having the right knowledge and information can make what can be a stressful time feel much more manageable. 

Traipsing in and out of of financial institutions, comparing products, policy and pricing has never been said to be a quick process let alone an enjoyable one for those on the hunt for a home, yet it's something that simply needs to be done to make sure that your bank's offering is really up with the market and looking after you and that's where we come into play. 

We do the walking, talking, negotiating and sorting for you and after careful analysis based not only on your short term but long term financial goals, we then make the big decisions together that sit and fit well with you going forward. 

Empowering and educating our clients by offering our in depth knowledge of many lending institutions is what we do best. Align this with exceptional service, no cost to you and our friendly down to earth approach we make what many see as a necessary time consuming chore more efficient, time and money saving and definitely tailor made. 

Next time you or someone you know is about to start the journey of finding the right finance, we are the right place to start to make those decisions, decisions, decisions easier. 

Advanced Mortgage & Insurance Solutions - Make a great decision!   

Election Policies for First Home Buyers

With the election looming there has been a lot of commentary on support for first home buyers.  This is developing as a major election issue as the parties strive to capture the younger voter and address the passion we have for home ownership.


National says that it backs young Kiwis who are disciplined, save up and want to put a deposit down on a property.  National values home ownership because it provides stability for families, strength for communities and security in retirement.  

Their policy focuses on changes to KiwiSaver.  The First Home Deposit Subsidy would be replaced with a KiwiSaver HomeStart Grant. This is a similar scheme, but has higher house price limits, and doubles the support for people who are buying or building a brand new home.

National will allow people to withdraw more money from their KiwiSaver account to use as a deposit on their first home. First home buyers will be allowed to withdraw the Government’s annual contribution to their account – the member tax credit of up to $521 a year – as well as their own, and their employer’s, contributions.

Finally, more people will be able to get Welcome Home Loans, which means they require only a 10 per cent deposit to get a government-guaranteed loan. This will be achieved by making the Welcome Home Loan house price limits the same as those for the new KiwiSaver HomeStart Grant.


Labour says it recognises the need to act urgently to address the critical shortage of housing supply and housing affordability. They say there is no single way back to affordability and owning our own future in housing, but turning current trends around and starting down the right track is essential.

They recognise that the biggest barrier to home ownership is the difficulty of getting on the first rungs of the housing ladder. One of the main reasons housing is unaffordable is the lack of new entry-level houses. They quote the 1960s and 1970s, when homeownership was on the rise and 30-35% of the new houses built were entry-level homes. Today, that proportion has fallen to just 5%.

Labour plan to build 100,000 starter homes over 10 years for first home buyers with an emphasis on Christchurch, reform monetary policy to lower interest rates, and crack down on property speculation through a capital gains tax and restrictions on non-resident purchasers of New Zealand houses.  In reforming monetary policy Labour wants to look at ways of introducing long term fixed rate mortgage products.

Minor Parties

The minor parties also have housing policies to encourage home ownership.

The Outcome

Whichever way our parliament is made up after the election, it is good to see that first home affordability is being addressed as a priority.  Let’s hope that the pre election hype turns into policy that can be implemented to make home ownership a realistic goal for first home buyers. 

The Current Market

With the approach of the general election the housing market has adopted a wait and see approach. Potential buyers want to have certainty before committing themselves.

Home values in Auckland, Christchurch and Tauranga are still increasing but at a slower rate than this time last year.  The Auckland region as a whole saw residential property values increase by 1.8% over the past three months. Residential property values in Hamilton City have decreased slightly by 0.2% and over the same period residential property values in the Wellington Region still showed a slight downward trend down 0.5%.

Residential property values in Christchurch City have increased 1.1% over the past three months and in Dunedin City they have decreased slightly by 0.4% over the same period.

Insurance Broker Onboard

Published by Scott Miller on Monday, September 01, 2014 in

*Exciting Announcement*

It’s Spring – So we’re in growth mode!

 Advanced Mortgage Solutions is an established successful Christchurch Mortgage Broking Company owned by Scott Miller which has been trading for the past 9 years. This year the company has been in growth mode after successfully trading through what could only be regarded as one of New Zealand’s most challenging property and lending market’s after the city was hit by the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes.


In February 2014 Maria Thackwell joined the team after 3 years of running her own successful broking business and previously to this had 26 successful years with Westpac as one of their top Mobile Mortgage Managers in the country.


The team has recently expanded further with the addition of another experienced Registered Financial Adviser, Brennen Lewis who specialises in Risk Insurance. Advanced Insurance Solutions Ltd has been established and will operate alongside Advanced Mortgage Solutions Ltd to provide our existing and new clients with comprehensive insurance solutions as well as ongoing expert advice tailored to them in regard to their financial and insurance requirements.


We see this as another way to provide both our new and existing clients with ongoing support, advice, direction, as well as comprehensive options and solutions in regards to protection of their major assets and their livelihoods. In doing so we are giving them the ability to protect what is important on an individual basis so they can live the lives they desire in the best and worst of times.


Our goal is to provide a wide yet easy to understand set of product options and solutions within a “one stop shop” environment for our clients while retaining professional, qualified and comprehensive product and pricing advice from experts.

Please feel free to contact the team for further information – 0508 466 356 and visit our website at . We are very excited about helping our clients make informed decisions and hope that you will be interested in sharing our successes to date.

In celebration of this Milestone we will soon also be running a Facebook Draw to allow you to “grow your garden” this Spring so if you’re not following us already please like our Facebook Page watch this space and be in to win.

Property Gazette - August

Published by Scott Miller on Wednesday, August 06, 2014 in

Property Gazette - August      

Home Loan activity seems to have followed the weather lately in that one week it’s glorious and the next it’s cold and miserable! Interpreting that into “Home Loan” language, what we are saying here is that we are absolutely flat out one minute and the next everyone seems to have hunkered down with the cold weather.

It is winter after all and once Spring has sprung we generally see more consistency in the market.

In saying the above we have certainly been helping our clients secure some very hot deals, and dealing with some cold responses from the banks which with a little persistence we have turned around which is certainly one of the many benefits of using our services. We are happy to push boundaries where many people aren’t, we always look outside the square and have a common sense approach to bank policy which is sometimes overlooked.

Take the client who was declined initially on the fact that a Credit Card payment was missed by two days, yet the following month the same Bank actually increased their Credit Card limit internally showing that one department was not concerned by this fact and another declined citing “account conduct”. This is where analysis of repayment history over a longer term was imperative and a common sense approach need to be taken. It most likely doesn’t need saying that our client was very happy with our services!

So upwards and onwards towards Spring, warmer days, longer evenings and a general feeling of wellbeing, which sees people out and about more and making plans in regard to buying and selling homes after winter.

As always, we are here to help, not only with new borrowing but for existing home loan clients who would like our assistance in renegotiating the banks “window” rates that are offered by letter with no discounts.

Rate Available as of 6th August 2014

Floating - 6.34%

6 Months - 5.70%
12 Months - 5.94%
18 Months - 6.15%
24 Months – 5.99%
36 Months - 6.25%
48 Months - 6.49%
60 Months - 6.69%

*All rates subject to change without notice and not available to all borrowers.

There are a number of forces at work in the property market at the moment. On the one hand we have an improving labour market, which is looking to push up house prices throughout the country. Following that we also have an increasing number of immigrants arriving, adding to our housing shortage.

However, on the other hand there is not a lot of activity in the real estate market at the moment, which is preventing house prices from increasing dramatically. Rising interest rates are playing their part too. We’re also seeing an increasing number of residential building consents, which could prevent our housing shortage from becoming an even bigger issue.

In the real estate market we’re seeing the number of house sales continue to slide, with six of the last eight months reporting declines, meaning we’re currently sitting at 17 percent fewer house sales than October 2013.

Annual house price inflation is still looking strong, but has dropped marginally in the last quarter to sit 1 percent lower than its recent peak. Housing affordability has taken a bit of a hit recently with mortgage rates continuing to rise, but the damage has been limited with a favourable discounted interest rates.

Looking now to the big picture, and that economic momentum that’s been steamrolling forward recently has also started showing signs of slowing. The growth of our annual GDP is estimated to slow from around 4 percent in mid-2014 to around 3 percent in 2015. The construction boom (mainly in Auckland and Christchurch) is doing its part to in keeping the forward momentum, but those rising interest rates and the high NZD are taking their toll.

What’s Hot

A number of banks have been changing their fixed mortgage rates in the past month. While we’ve seen rises in 6 month to 3 year rates, we’ve seen a reduction in 4 and 5 year rates, meaning the mortgage curve is starting to “flatten”. This makes fixing for longer terms start to look a lot more attractive. We think the 2 – 3 year rate to be right in the sweet spot, and while the floating rate hasn’t changed, the 6 month rate continues to be the lowest.

Deal of the Month

Here’s another great deal we heard about last month. The lending was for property development on a lo doc basis. A client wanted funding to settle the purchase of multiple residential properties that they were keen to redevelop in the future. A part capitalised interest facility was provided to support debt servicing in the interim.  As security for the loan they offered three of their own residential properties, so they obtained a 12 month loan of $1,080,000 with an interest rate of 9.25%, and an LVR of 75%.

We appreciate your business, support and referrals to your friends, family and colleagues as there is no better recommendation than this!

Kind regards

Scott and Maria

July's Property Gazette

Published by Scott Miller on Monday, July 14, 2014 in

Traditionally winter brings some slower months in the property market with people preferring to stay home and keep warm. Couple that with this being an election year which throws some hesitation from consumers into the mix due to uncertainty around possible policy changes affecting property, rules and regulations or interest rates from parties vying for votes, and to top it off we are in the 3rd year after a major disaster when people are doggone tired.

Despite all of the above Advanced Mortgage Solutions has certainly had our share of First Home Buyers, Home Buyers, Investors and clients re-financing from one lender to another for a variety of reasons which stands us in really good stead for when things return to “normal”.

One thing that has been really noticeable lately is the interest we have had from other complimentary businesses wanting to refer their clients to us as they know they will be looked after well and in the hands of experienced Financial Advisor’s with years and years of experience under our belt.  This is a huge compliment to us and in return we also develop stronger relationships with these complimentary businesses that can also assist our clients in one way or another as they put in place their financial goals.

If you are unsure about who to use in regard to a Lawyer, Accountant, Authorised Financial Advisor (Investments) Quantity Surveyor, Valuer or Risk Advisor we are happy to give you recommendations of a couple to choose from. Having an endorsement from those someone else has done business with is always helpful.

We have also seen plenty of movement from the banks in regard to lending above 80%. Funds are available in this space, so if you or anyone you know is sitting back thinking that it’s all too hard, it’s time to think again and come and see us.

TC3 finance approvals are now becoming slightly easier also with an approval of a fully repaired home at 84% loan to value ratio. It is still case by case however one bank is no longer interested in the “TC” rating as they have a system that will assess the land and lend accordingly. There is still most certainly more risk to the banks in lending on these properties so the paper war can be quite daunting, but slowly things are changing as homes are repaired, rebuilt and water goes under the bridge.

Finally, the biggest compliment you can give us is to refer your family & friends to Advanced Mortgage Solutions. Most people think that you use a Broker after things get broken with your own bank, but those who have used our services know it is best to come and see us first and let us do the shopping for you free of charge to make sure you get it right first time.

Current Interest Rates as at 10 July 2014

Variable               6.15%
6 Month Fixed     5.80% 
1 Year Fixed        5.85%
2 Year Fixed        6.00%
3 Year Fixed        6.25%
5 Year Fixed        6.89% 

*All rates subject to change without notice and not available to all borrowers.

Property Prices

The number of house sales around the country have started to drop, and although house prices continue to increase, the pace of this increase has certainly slowed. A couple of influencing factors are trying to push prices in the opposite direction, these include an improving market backdrop, an increasing number of immigrants arriving on our shores, and a decreasing number of houses for sale. But change is in the air, and we’re starting to see the initial signs of a cooling labour market.

The month of May saw a very slight rise in house sale numbers, but we are still way off the numbers we were seeing before the Loan to Value Ratio limits were introduced. There’s no doubt that real estate turnover has become sedated, and price gains are slowing too. However on the other side of the coin, a rise in migration is increasing demand for housing, this coupled with a smaller volume of houses for sale, means we are seeing property prices resisting the drop.

However, an increase in interest rates has taken its toll, and further increases are expected soon. First-home buyers are going to continue to find it hard to get into the market as property becomes less affordable, even more so with increasing demands for debt servicing.

There is something to look forward to however – it’s expected we’ll have an annual average GDP growth of 3.7 percent this year, with a growth of 2.9 percent estimated in 2015. But before you all get ahead of yourselves, remember there are still risks and vulnerabilities.

While global growth continues to improve, it’s still in a fragile state. Likewise, New Zealand’s commodity prices are high, but they’re starting to fall. Also, our economy is still in debt, which means our potential growth is naturally stymied. We simply don’t have the capacity to be growing at this rate for long.

One of the major contributors to our nation’s growth is expected to be the construction sector, as the rebuild in Christchurch continues, and earth-quake strengthening is implemented throughout the rest of the country.

What’s Hot

Despite a third successive increase to the Official Cash Rate (OCR), mortgage rates for a number of banks haven’t changed significantly. However, with the OCR tipped to rise even further, we wouldn’t be surprised to see rates that have resisted change go up as well. So now’s the time to look at those fixed rates, many of which sit lower than floating. Come and talk to us to see what money you can save…..

Property Gazette - March

Published by Scott Miller on Sunday, March 23, 2014 in

Once again it’s been a busy month at AMS! There is certainly no “let up” in the lending space regardless of the Reserve Bank loan value to ratio rules regarding borrowers with low deposits. Where there is a will there’s a way and we are seeing parents coming to the party with assistance for their first home buyer children with either equity or loans and gifts.

Lending is in fact happening over 80% of purchase price as well.

Never before has there been a more challenging time to be borrowing however, mix in Earthquakes and damaged homes, land damage, loan to value rules from the Reserve Bank and there are still plenty of potential home owners sitting, thinking that it is just a “too complicated” market currently.

That’s where we come in.

Day in and out we are talking with the Banks about lending giving us the “feel’ for what fits and what doesn’t and being right on the pulse is important in a changing  and complex environment.

Many clients do what they consider to be the least stressful and easiest option and just go into their own bank looking for support, but what is easiest and most comfortable isn’t what is necessarily what’s best. Getting an approval up front first time from the right place saves the situation where a decline can taint your next option. A decline shows on your credit history as an enquiry for the next lender to question, be it that you just didn’t fit your own bank’s particular policy or not and makes the next lender question why your own bank may not want your custom.

Approval first time, saves time!

To help support those in the first home buyer space we have also written a guide  called Deposit less than 20% and tired of paying rent?... Our Guide to low deposit lending and options- Part one about the ins and outs of lending in this market, tips and advice about making yourself a good bet for the bank, and what to do when.

Check out our blog here

Have a great month!

                                                  Current Interest Rates as at 18 March 2014

                                                               Variable               5.40% 

                                                                6 Month Fixed     5.35%

                                                               1 Year Fixed        5.60%

                                                               2 Year Fixed        5.90%

                                                               3 Year Fixed        6.20%

                                                               5 Year Fixed        6.85%


Interest Rate Outlook

Last Thursday was the first time in 3 years that the Reserve Bank has lifted the Official Cash Rate which it moved by 0.25%. In isolation this move would have little impact on our property market but given it has been laid over the top of the LVR restrictions put in place in October 2013 it appears that we may finally be seeing a slowing of our property market.

The volume of house sales has slowed through the first quarter of 2014, the pace of price increases has eased and the average days to sell a house slowed.

Many economists are predicting total interest rate increases in 2014 to be around the 1% mark (so another 0.75% through the balance of this year), we are a little cautious about this given the ‘spike in our dollar’ on the back of last week’s small increase which will surely make the government nervous, given the impact on exporters.

Of course we also have an election due in September so rising interest rates and dollar would certainly make government nervous. Although the National party state that they have no influence over the Reserve Bank and monetary policy.

The flip side to the rising interest rates is the 10 year highs in migration with over 22,000 net increase in our population last year which continues to drive house demand. However building of new homes seems to finally be kicking in with over 21,000 consents issued in 2013 which is the highest number since 2007.     

What does all this mean in terms of a borrowing strategy?

Yes variable rates have increased and are likely to again once or twice this year, as such sitting on a variable rate probably doesn’t make much sense unless you are looking to make lump sum principal reductions or repay in full within the next 6 – 12 months.

However, we also caution against fixing in for too long which does carry a premium for certainty. The mid-range fixed rates of 2 - 4 years appear to carry the most value at present, although if you have a sizeable mortgage perhaps a split of longer and mid-term fixed rates would benefit you. It is best to sit down with us & discuss your options.    

What’s Hot

With the recent rise in the official cash rate many consumers who were on a floating interest rate have panicked somewhat, seeing us inundated with requests to fix their rates. The good news is the 18 month to 3 year fixed rates have remained unchanged giving clients a pleasant surprise.   

Deal of the Month

LVR restrictions within the banks are definitely easing, we recently had a client looking to move into property investment with their total LVR sitting at 85%, we were able to get this client approved whereas as little as a month ago this would not have been the case, banks are now getting a handle on managing their allocation of high LVR lending, talk to us - we deliver!

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