May 28, 2013
Nearly 85% of homeowners feel positive about their current financial situation, describing it as either solid (23%) or reasonable (61%), according to the 2013 Homeowner Intentions Survey* (the Survey) of over 1,000 Australian mortgage holders, conducted by Mortgage Choice.
Notwithstanding the fact that the current low interest rate environment has translated into significantly lower mortgage repayments for most home loan borrowers, the findings are still a welcome indication that most homeowners are feeling optimistic about their ability to manage their finances.
The results of the Survey show that while the majority of homeowners feel positive about their financial position, their most pressing financial concern or commitment at present is ‘repaying my mortgage', at 37% of respondents. This was followed by the ‘cost of living' (25%) and ‘repaying credit card debt' (16%) to make up the top three responses.
Head of Corporate Affairs at Mortgage Choice, Belinda Williamson said, “The fact that over one third of homeowners may see their mortgage repayments at the top of their financial priority list is a really encouraging sign. Because let's face it, for many Australians, taking out a mortgage is often the biggest financial decision they will make, so it is sensible to take that commitment seriously.”
The Survey also found that the majority of homeowners (77%) were making additional repayments towards their mortgage. The most common habit to making extra repayments was contributing as much as they can to each repayment but redrawing funds if necessary. This was followed by contributing as much as they can to each repayment and avoiding any temptation to redraw the funds and making up the top three habits was rounding their repayments up to the nearest hundred.
Ms Williamson said, “If your investment strategy or overall goal is to repay your home loan then making extra payments is a great habit to get into. It will help you to repay the home loan sooner and to build up a buffer to cope with future interest rate rises or changes to your financial situation.”
“It was interesting to see that of those people who were making additional mortgage repayments, over 50% said they had not made any lifestyle sacrifices to do so. When asked whether they would continue to make additional repayments if interest rates go up, nearly 45% said they would as they had already factored in higher repayments.
“With so many respondents finding extra mortgage payments manageable without lifestyle changes, imagine what could be achieved by making some small sacrifices and contributing as much and as often to your loan as you possibly can. Even small, regular extra repayments can make a significant difference. The sky's the limit!”
For further information or to arrange an interview, please contact:
Mortgage Choice Corporate Affairs
(02) 8907 0472 / 0407 416 124
(02) 9018 8603 / 0412 550 004
*About the survey
Market research company Nine Rewards was commissioned by Mortgage Choice to conduct the 2013 Homeowner Intentions Survey. The independent online Survey was completed by 1,032 Australians who have a mortgage and have been a homeowner for two or more years. The Survey was conducted in mid May 2013. Note, the figures in the media release commentary have been rounded to the nearest whole percentage point.
This article is for general information purposes only. It has been prepared without considering your objectives, financial situation or needs. You should, before acting on the advice, consider its appropriateness to your circumstances.