Mortgage Exit Strategy

What is an acceptable mortgage exit strategy?

When it comes to applying for a home loan, age matters. And so does your exit strategy!

While banks are generally open to lending to senior borrowers, there are some conditions that you have to meet. Lenders typically require you to provide an exit strategy on your mortgage if you’re closing in on retirement.

This helps lenders meet the responsible lending requirements associated with the National Credit Code.

However, not all exit strategies are accepted.

What is a mortgage exit strategy?

An exit strategy is effectively a backup mortgage repayment plan.

Technically, all home loans have an exit strategy. It’s paying off the mortgage over 30 years. Lenders require you to provide an exit strategy only when the standard one doesn’t work.

Development loans generally also require exit strategies. A property developer may not afford to keep all of the units when the building is complete. So, the bank accepts an exit strategy of selling some or all of the units.

But banks don’t accept all exit strategies…

Your exit strategy depends on your asset position, income and retirement plans. However, banks may not accept your exit strategy if:

Your plan is high risk or not realistic.

It doesn’t meet their policy.

To get around this is simple. You can either prepare a different strategy or apply with another lender. We have access to 30 lenders all over Australia. We can help you choose a lender that can agree with your exit strategy.

What’s considered a good mortgage exit strategy?

There’s no such thing as the best strategy! But you can aim to have the best mortgage exit strategy that suits you the most and still be acceptable to the lender.

Lenders commonly accept strategies that include:

Reducing the loan term: This includes making sure your home loan is paid off before you retire. Please note that the retirement age varies from lender to lender.

Downsizing your property: You can sell your home and move into a smaller property after you retire. However, some lenders may not accept this.

Using your super fund: You can use a lump sum or ongoing income from your super fund to pay the loan after you retire. Some of our lenders accept a projection of your super and mortgage balance as evidence that you can repay the loan.

If your strategy doesn’t work, it may be better to avoid getting a mortgage. Apply only when you’re sure that you can afford making the mortgage repayments.

Do investment properties need exit strategies?

You actually don’t need an exit strategy on an investment property. This is because you can sell it anytime without financial hardship.

Under the National Consumer Credit Protection (NCCP) act, you’re considered to be in financial hardship only if you can’t pay off a mortgage without selling your home.

However, some lenders don’t approve mortgages for investment properties unless you provide an acceptable exit strategy.

You can speak with us if your lender asks for an exit strategy for your investment loan. We’ll help you find a new lender.

What if I own a business?

If you’re a business owner, you may still be earning an income past the normal retirement age. This typically depends on whether or not:

You’re required to do manual labour.

You have a succession plan for management.

It’s reasonable to assume that the business can continue to operate without you.

We can present a case to some of our lenders to show that you can continue to make your mortgage repayments past the normal retirement age.

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