Want that apartment? This service will help you work out if you can afford it.

Thanks to our brand partner, eChoice

Getting the flat, apartment or house you’re after can be tough.

Whether it’s your first home, a family upgrade or an investment property, there are a lot of factors to consider. The main one? Affordability.

If figuring out the whole mortgage situation gives you the nervous sweats, that’s so normal. But you can give yourself a big leg-up if you take the time to understand the market and the process of applying for a mortgage.

You don’t need to be an expert. You just need a hack to help you through and save you time and stress, which is why the eChoice website is so helpful.

eChoice is a home loan comparison website and service that takes the confusion out of lending all that mortgage money, helping you to become a smarter borrower. You can check your estimated borrowing power, calculate stamp duty, generate a home loan report and have a complimentary and obligation-free chat with one of their experts.

My husband and I are currently contemplating the purchase of an investment property so I kicked off the process to see it in action.

Game changer: The free home loan report tool.*

The home loan report tool is super simple to use. It starts by asking if you’re looking to purchase or refinance a property. You then select if you’re a first home buyer or not and whether you’re looking to live in the home (owner occupier) or purchase it as an investment. The fixer-upper flats we’ve been looking at go for around $300k so I put that in with a loan amount of $270k. A few more easy questions followed, which asked me to type in our pre-tax salaries and our credit card limits (eeek).

After popping in my contact details, I was issued with a free home loan report detailing how much we could potentially borrow, along with our estimated repayments, stamp duty, mortgage registration fee and a full list of featured mortgage products from more than 25 lenders on eChoice’s panel. I could then click on my preferred mortgage deal to see if we could qualify (of course subject to final approval by the lender) and request a callback. Easy, with not a bead of sweat on my forehead.

Your home loan report includes your monthly repayment estimate plus info on other fees and charges. Image: Supplied.

Within a few minutes I was emailed my summary report and a mortgage consultant from eChoice gave me a call to offer further support. He was helpful without being pushy and offered to match me with an expert mortgage broker. Big tick for the quick follow-up.

You also get a list of featured mortgage deals from over 25 lenders. Image: Supplied.
You can even click on each mortgage deal for more info and to request a callback. Image: Supplied.

Cool tool: The loan repayment calculator.*

I was so impressed with the eChoice site that I showed it to a friend who is looking at purchasing her first home with her boyfriend (and is understandably a little nervous about it).

We used the loan repayment calculator tool to work out their monthly repayments on a $650k loan. My friend was able to see how much interest they’d be paying over 30 years as opposed to reducing the length of their loan to 25 years.

The loan repayment calculator is super handy to calculate estimated loan repayments. Image: Supplied.

After trying the loan repayment calculator, my friend ended up generating her own home loan report. Within a few minutes of putting in her and her boyfriend’s deets, she found out that they could potentially borrow up to $924.12k and that on a $650k mortgage they’d be looking at an estimated repayment of $3000 per month with a stamp duty payment of $36,838. Once again, eChoice delivered a full list of featured mortgage products from their panel, and the option of a follow-up chat with one of their experts, either in person or on the phone.

I have a sneaking feeling I might see a SOLD sign on my friend's Insta-feed sometime soon, thanks to our little research project.

My friend and her boyfriend could potentially borrow an estimated maximum of $924.12k for their first home (subject to lender approval). Image: Supplied.

Nice feature: The suburb demographic profile.

While I was on the eChoice site I was also able to unlock my desired suburb's demographic profile, which gave additional info about the average property prices and loan amounts in my area. It's such an interesting tool, check it out:

eChoice makes it easy to see the average prices, loan amounts and salaries in your suburb. Image: Supplied.

Later this week the husbo and I are going to fire up the eChoice tools and start looking at our options for refinancing our current mortgage. I’m looking forward to seeing if we can save a bit on our monthly repayments and perhaps reduce the length of our mortgage.

Turns out the home loan process doesn’t have to be fraught with stress and hard work. If you’re looking to purchase a property or refinance your current loan, I can recommend eChoice as a first port of call.

*Things you should know: Terms and conditions, fees and charges and normal lending criteria applies. The advice provided is general advice only as, in preparing it eChoice did not take into account your lending objectives, financial situation or particular needs. Before making a decision on the basis of this advice, you should consider how appropriate the advice is to your particular lending needs, and objectives. eChoice and its partners may receive a referral fee. Copyright © Finconnect (Australia) Pty Ltd trading as "eChoice", ABN 45 122 896 477 Australian Credit Licence 385888"

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Are you looking to buy a new home, refinance your current home loan or purchase an investment property? eChoice’s expert brokers can help you understand the market and then simplify the process of applying for a mortgage. We have access to hundreds of products with a panel of 25 lenders, so we’ll find you a competitive rate. Visit our website to check your borrowing power, calculate stamp duty, generate a home loan report or receive complimentary and obligation-free advice from our team.

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