Getting an idea of your price range before you start the house hunt will save you time and heartache. This guide covers a few methods of working out the size of home loan you can afford, but we also suggest you start by using the Tella home loan affordability calculator. We've added a link to this below.
Other quick rules of thumb around affordability are:
Multiple of income
Take your total income and multiply it by 6 as an indication of how much you can borrow. For instance, if you have a total joint income of $200,000, you could potentially borrow $1,200,000. Your monthly expenses such as any personal loans or higher than normal living costs will reduce this amount.
Payments as a percentage of income
Fixed payments such as total monthly mortgage repayments plus any other loan or hire purchase payments, should be no more than 40% of total monthly gross income. You can work backwards from totalling up your salary and then totalling up your existing fixed payments to determine the maximum mortgage repayment a lender will accept. Then you may try out different loan sizes to see what you can afford with these repayments.
What’s left over
This is the most common assessment used by lenders. They consider a minimum amount, referred to as minimum surplus or uncommitted monthly income, that should be left over each month after fixed payments and a living allowance are deducted. The acceptable amount varies from bank to bank. The estimates for a couple are based on their joint income and lenders expect to see a smaller surplus from someone with children.
Loan to value
All New Zealand banks are governed by the Reserve Bank, and they specify that each bank holds no more than 10% of their loans with a loan-to-value ratio greater than 80%. This means that, even if you could afford to borrow more than 80% LVR, you’re not guaranteed a loan approval as it depends on how many other loans held by that bank are above 80% LVR.
How much loan can I afford to borrow?
That depends on your circumstances but as a rule of thumb, you may be able to borrow up to 5-6 times your annual income. Try out our affordability calculator to get a better idea.
Can I get a home loan if I'm self-employed?
Yes, you can. If you own 25% or more of a business then a lender would want to look at the financial statements of the business. They are looking at track record and the business' ability to continue to provide you with an income that can be used for loan repayments.
How do I qualify for a home loan?
Each lender has their own internal home loan criteria. Once you've applied on our website, we work with these loan criteria to find the best fit for your circumstances and in doing so pre-qualify you. Once you've agreed to move forward, we submit a formal request for approval from the lender.
Can I get a home loan if I have other loans?
So long as you can afford to service the loan payments then there is no issue. All lenders will want to see your total debt position so you will be asked for information on the existing loans.
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