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BetterRewards Dream Lottery 2016 September Winner

Share the excitement as our CEO Shaun Rademeyer surprises Goodman Serahanye, September’s Dream Lottery winner with R60,000! Goodman has dreamt of taking his parents on holiday to Cape Town. This will be their first holiday ever! How wonderful for Goodman to share this special experience with his much-loved parents in making their dream come true.

The Igniting Dreams Initiative

What is The Igniting Dreams Initiative?

BetterLife Home Loans believes in making dreams come true and in the process changing the lives of others. Through The Igniting Dreams Initiative, we want to encourage everyone to submit their dreams for change – whether it is for yourself, an individual, a community or charity in need. Enter your dream and help us to change lives!

Why did we create The Igniting Dreams Initiative?

Our vision is to build a world-class home services business by making the home journey an amazing experience. Not only do we aim to change our customers’ lives for the better, but we also want to make their dreams come true. We want to inspire through awesome service. We want to proudly live our brand, and strive to make a difference, every day!

Candice Dexter from BetterLife Home Loans explains what our bond originators do for you

In today’s economic climate, obtaining a home loan can be a difficult and time-consuming exercise. But with over 15 years of experience in bond origination, and a team of home loan application experts, BetterLife Home Loans provides you with a better, easier way to finance your dream home.

We handle your home loan application – let us work with South Africa’s largest banks for you and we will not only assist you with successfully attaining a home loan, but will also help you secure the best possible deal. We know exactly what information is required by each bank to make a successful application, and we’ll do it all at no cost to you!

Home loan options for different age buyers

Different stages of life require different approaches when it comes to obtaining a home loan. For example, first-time buyers often have good incomes but a shortage of cash and retirees often have enough cash or equity for a large deposit but reduced incomes.

“However, no matter which generation you belong to, working with an experienced and reputable mortgage originator is your best strategy for getting the loan that fits your personal circumstances best,” says Shaun Rademeyer, CEO of BetterLife Home Loans, SA’s biggest mortgage originator.

“We understand, for example, that millennial homebuyers probably haven’t been in the workforce that long, so cash is often the primary consideration for them.

“Of course a 20% deposit would mean that you’d have lower monthly bond repayments, but even if you haven’t managed to save that much yet, we can still help you to reap the benefits of home ownership.

You will need:

– Stable employment
– A clean credit record
– You will have to be able to afford the monthly repayments on your loan comfortably.

Once you have everything ready, you should be able to get a loan with a deposit between 7% and 8%, which is the average paid by our first-time buyers over the past 12 months.”

At the moment, he notes, the BetterLife Home Loans statistics show that the average purchase price for first time buyers is around R680 000, so an 8% deposit would be R54 400.

“This would give you a monthly repayment of about R6250 on a 20-year bond at the current prime interest rate of 10,5% – while the monthly repayment with a 20% deposit would be around R5450.”

Rademeyer says that for Generation X buyers, many of whom are putting children through school and caring for their parents while also trying to save for their own retirement, lower monthly costs are very important. This means that they should aim to put down the biggest deposit possible when taking out a new home loan.

“And if they are repeat buyers, they may well have built up some equity in their existing home that will help them to do so – and might even enable them to secure a loan at a better interest rate, which would reduce their monthly instalments even further.”

Meanwhile, he says, for baby boomers that are either retired or about to retire, living on less income is often their concern.

“And if you’re a baby boomer with lots of equity in your home but less income-generating savings than you hoped for, one option to discuss with your mortgage adviser is selling your home in order to downscale to a smaller, cheaper house or apartment and get cash back to put into your retirement savings.

“In this case you would probably want only a very small mortgage and should also look at paying the biggest deposit possible. In addition, you should ask your adviser to help you get pre-qualified in order to see what sort of loan you can get on your retirement income.”

It is also worth noting, Rademeyer says, that like any other investment plan, a home-buying plan always proves more effective if you start young, because your home equity grows as you pay off your loan and your home appreciates in value.

“The best outcome is if it is fully paid off by the time you want to retire, so that you can live there rent free or use the proceeds to buy a smaller home for cash and still have some money left over to add to your retirement savings.”

Securing your home loan: Dot those I’s and cross those T’s

You’ve found the home of your dreams and your offer has been accepted – now all you need to finalise the purchase, is an answer on your home loan application. You’ve already assembled a ton of paperwork for the application, from payslips to employment letters, bank statements, tax returns and expenditure declarations, so you’re pretty confident that the final answer will be “yes”.

But things don’t always work out the way you expect, says Shaun Rademeyer, CEO of BetterLife Home Loans, SA’s biggest mortgage bond originator. “Even if your credit record is great, you can still be turned down for a loan because of inconsistencies or gaps in your documentation.” For example, you may have forgotten to mention that part of your stated income is derived from a second job. Or if you are buying the property with someone else, it may have slipped your mind to detail their monthly expenses.

Why this is a problem

This may seem trivial to you, says Rademeyer, especially if you believe that you will have no trouble making the monthly home loan repayments. It is also much less likely to happen if you apply for your loan through a mortgage originator such as BetterLife Home Loans, which has experienced loan officers to advise you upfront about what the different banks may require when assessing home loan applications, as well as about what further legwork may be required.

“However, aside from assessing the risk in each loan, lenders also have to apply very strict rules to ensure that you will not become over-indebted if they grant you a bond, and therefore they are entitled to double check anything that raises the smallest red flag”, explains Rademeyer. “At that stage they will most likely also ask for more documentation or evidence that will enable them to decide if you will manage the instalments or not. Our advice to prospective borrowers is just to co-operate and try to provide whatever additional paperwork is requested, whether it is more bank statements, proof of the source of your deposit, or detailed financial statements if you are self-employed”, he advises.

The bottom line

According to Rademeyer, the lender would not be asking for additional information unless it was necessary to complete the approval process. “The banks are relatively keen to approve new home loans at the moment, but a quick denial will nevertheless be forthcoming if you get hot under the collar, refuse to provide what they have asked for and insist that they evaluate your application using what you have already provided”, he says. “Basically, you are asking for someone to lend you money to buy your home, and you need to be prepared to dot the I’s and cross the T’s until they are convinced that this is a good idea.”

There are processes in place that ensure that home loans are only granted to people who are in fact are in a position to bear the financial burden – this is done to protect both the lenders as well as the applicants. Therefore, it’s important to remind yourself that the banks won’t ask for anything that isn’t absolutely crucial to getting your home loan approved in the long-run, so you should be prepared to jump through as many hoops as it takes.