Getting a loan for an apartment

13/11/2020
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Buying an apartment as your first home is a great alternative to buying a typical free-standing house.

Apartments are usually more affordable, often more central, and sometimes come with some added perks like a shared gym or pool. But getting a loan for an apartment is a little different from getting a loan for a standalone house.

Here’s what you need to know.

 

APARTMENT SIZE MATTERS

One of the first questions you’ll be asked when you go to get a loan for an apartment is how many square metres the apartment you are considering is.

This is because there is usually a lower limit on the size of an apartment that a lender will let you borrow on. This is usually around the 40sqm to 50sqm mark.

If you’re considering an apartment above this size, great! There aren’t typically any limitations on how much you can borrow (beyond the usual income servicing and credit checks that every loan has).

But if you want to buy an apartment below the lender’s minimum size requirement, they may:

  • Ask for a higher deposit
  • Ask for additional security
  • Not be willing to lend on that apartment at all

If you want to buy an apartment, aiming for above something 50+ sqm for the internal floor size will expand your loan options.

 

LEASEHOLD AND UNIT TITLE

The title that an apartment is purchased under matters. This may be:

  • Unit title (AKA strata title), where the owner owns the apartment outright.
  • Leasehold, where the ‘owner’ has purchased the right to live in the apartment for a long period of time.

Under leasehold, you don’t own the actual  land. Some lenders may not be willing to provide a loan to buy a leasehold apartment. You should get a clear understanding of which it is before negotiating to purchase.

 

DEPOSIT MATTERS

The 20% deposit is standard for purchasing a home, but not so for all apartments.

As mentioned before, smaller apartments might need a higher deposit. But regular sized apartments (50+ sqm) may need more than a 20% deposit as well.

This will depend on the lender, where you’re buying, the building you’re buying in, and so on, but some apartments may need a 30% deposit or more.

 

Home loans for apartments are a little different from home loans for a house, but with the right lender, absolutely achievable.

Start an application for your apartment home loan through Avanti Finance.

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