As we welcome the 2022 new year, it’s a good time to take stock of the year just passed. If you’re a homeowner, you might be looking back on 2021 to see whether you achieved your financial goals, or you might be thinking about how you can improve your financial health in the year ahead.
Whatever your situation, make 2022 the year you get on top of your home loan and personal finances. Here, we’ve compiled a list of financial new year resolutions to help you put your best foot forward in 2022.
We get it – you’ve had more pressing things to deal with in 2021 than looking over your home and contents insurance. If you haven’t checked on your insurance policy for a while, 2022 is the year to do so.
It’s worth reviewing your home and contents policy regularly to make sure it’s still right for you, and that you’re getting a good deal. Insurance premiums can fluctuate year on year and are impacted by many factors including the level of cover you choose, your excess, any optional extras plus costs to the insurer that are beyond your control.
Chances are, your premium has gone up since the last time you checked, so it might be time to see if there are more competitive deals out there. Or, you might have increased the value of your contents this year, so your policy needs to be updated to reflect the amount you need covered.
Interest rates have been at historic lows over the past year but they’re already on the rise, with some banks upping their rates even though the official cash rate isn’t due to increase until 2023.
So, if you haven’t checked your interest rate in over a year, it’s likely you’re missing out on a lower rate. You can search and compare interest rates online, making it simple to do a quick rate review at home.
If you find that you could be paying less in interest on your home loan, it’s worth negotiating with your lender for a lower rate or refinancing with a different lender for a better rate. It’s important to note that if you’re on a fixed interest rate and you wish to break your fixed term, you may be charged break fees for doing so.
Make sure you always have best home loan deal.
It’s fair to say that most homeowners would love to pay off their home loan sooner and save money along the way. Making extra home loan repayments is a great way to get you on track to paying off your mortgage faster. This also means you pay less interest on your loan overall.
Extra repayments are allowed on most variable rate and split rate home loans, however, they’re usually not allowed on fixed rate home loans. You might decide to make regular extra repayments or aim to use lump sums throughout the year (like a tax refund or work bonus) as extra repayments on your loan.
If you’ve left your home loan on autopilot recently, it’s possible you’re paying for features you’re not even using. Extra features like offset accounts, redraw facilities, home loan portability and credit cards that come with home loan packages usually incur additional costs on your mortgage.
In the new year, make an effort to go over your home loan features to check for anything that you’re paying for but not using. Even if you are using a feature like an offset account, make sure the savings you gain from the account outweigh its associated fees – otherwise, you could be losing money.
Find out how much you could save each month.
Once you’ve done a thorough review of your home loan, it’s a good idea to assess your finances as a whole and make goals for any areas that you’d like to get back on track.
You might want to look at areas like:
Doing a review of your finances at the start of the year can help prepare you for the year ahead – and you might be surprised by how much money you can save by doing so!
This one is for the investors – when was the last time you went over your landlord insurance? While it’s easy to let this one fall by the wayside when you have a property to look after, it’s important to ensure that your policy is up to date and you aren’t overpaying.
Much like home and contents insurance, landlord insurance premiums can rise and fall at any time, so it’s worth comparing policies to see if you could be paying less elsewhere. Also, if the price of rent for your property has changed or if you require higher coverage now than when you first took out your policy, it might be time to call your insurer.
If you’ve resolved to get on top of your home loan in the new year, Lendi can help. Book an appointment with one of our Home Loan Specialists to learn more about the home loan options available to you.
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The information in this post is general in nature and should not be considered personal or financial advice. You should always seek professional advice or assistance before making any financial decisions.
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