Finance advice

Act early to stop debt spiral, says broker

By Staff Reporter

As investors review their financial fitness for the New Year, one mortgage broker has some top tips on what to do if the worst happens.

Smartline executive director Joe Sirianni said too often investors and home owners who fall on hard times fail to take appropriate action, or hold onto their assets for too long.

“Eventually their debt repayments put them in a position where they get very close to bankruptcy and, in hindsight, they wish they’d sold their home sooner in order to get rid of their debt earlier and give themselves time to get back on track,” he said.

Mr Sirianni said investors who anticipate financial difficulties arising from redundancy, illness or injury had much to gain from acting early to avoid serious financial stress.

“It’s always best to be upfront with your lending institution to let them know about your situation – particularly if you predict that you’ll experience financial difficulties in the near future if you don’t secure another income,” he said.

“Not surprisingly, it’s in lenders’ best interests to work with borrowers to manage mortgage repayments during tough financial times.”

Mr Sirianni said if you’re in a precarious position and struggling with debt, you should contact your lender or mortgage adviser to look into switching to interest-only repayments or taking “a repayment holiday”. This will help you gain a realistic understanding of your predicament and potential outcomes.

“Not only are many people surprised by how readily lenders will work with them, they find that any misconceptions around how they might manage their debt on their own are incorrect," he said. “For example, many people mistakenly think that because they have equity in their home they can just borrow more money to help them manage their finances during difficult times, but if you don’t have an income, lenders will not – cannot – approve any new lending.”

In addition to the impacts of being unable to work as a result of poor health or injury, Mr Sirianni said it was credit card and personal loan debt that caused the most significant stress and change in financial circumstances.

“Out-of-control credit card and personal loan debt is a heavy drain on your finances, and the best way to deal with it is to put yourself on a repayment plan and talk with the lender,” he said. “Cut up the card, put yourself on a weekly or monthly repayment plan and make the commitment to pay off the debt.

“If you find yourself in a distressing financial position as a result of an unforeseeable event that, in turn, sees you falling behind on your mortgage repayments and incurring significant credit card debt as a result, there are options available – highlighting the need to get on top of out-of-control debt from the very beginning.”

Mr Sirianni advised investors to look closely at their insurance options and speak with their mortgage adviser regarding their personal situation.

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Tune in to the latest episode of Property Showcase, the podcast with the inside track on the products and businesses that will help turbocharge your portfolio, maximise returns and make your overall investment experience seamless and stress-free!

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To hear more about these services, make sure to tune into this episode of Property Showcase!

 Make sure you never miss an episode by subscribing to us now on iTunes!

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Many investors who would have been successfully approved for finance last year are struggling now to either begin or continue their property investment journey because of the current financial climate.

In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, broker John Manciamelli and Momentum Media director Alex Whitlock joins host Tim Neary to discuss how APRA changes and the royal commission have resulted in a tighter lending economy and what that means for Australian investors.

They discuss what traps investors should avoid if they are trying to obtain finance, the four key growth drivers in a property market and unpacking trust structures while revealing one type of trust that you should miss.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected] for more insights!

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In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, Katarina joins host Tim Neary to unpack her entry into the property market and experiences of rentvesting, and how the Smart Property Investment Show was vital  in a number of decisions which she made along the way.

Katarina discusses about the team that she had help her along the way, why she thinks that you should never skimp on a good solicitor and accountant, and the red flags which tell her why buying a new property doesn’t necessarily mean buying a better property.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

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More than just bricks and mortar, experts often regard property investment as a ‘game of finance’. As such, a good finance strategy can lead any investor to success.

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Why buying new property doesn’t mean buying better property

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