Big bank alternatives are returning to the home loan market, bringing competition back to property buyers.
Virgin Money returned to the home loan market this week, after the credit crisis saw it cease its home lending operations in June 2008.
“We’ve come to Australia to give the banks a run for their money,” Sir Richard Branson said at the Sydney launch earlier this week.
“There used to be nine banks, a lot of competition here. Those nine banks have largely disappeared, and now we've got four big banks, which means there isn't a lot of competition … and those banks are making a lot of money.''
Virgin Money’s return comes on the heels of Credit Union Australia’s (CUA) announcement that it plans to boost its position in the financial sector.
Speaking with The Australian Financial Review this week, CUA chief executive Chris Whitehead said the credit union saw an opportunity to take on the big banks and planned to double its size within five years.
With the major banks now writing more than 90 per cent of new mortgages, increased competition has to spell good news for buyers.