How long does a guarantor stay on a mortgage?

Around 60% of first home buyers get help from their parents, usually in the form of a guarantor home loan.

It’s a great way to get your foot into the property market if you have no deposit but when can you actually remove your parents as guarantors and what’s the process?

How much you owe matters

What matters most to the banks is your Loan to Value Ratio (LVR), which is the percentage of the your remaining loan amount against the value of your property.

For example, if you originally borrowed $525,000 (which includes the associated costs of completing the purchase including stamp duty and conveyancer fees) on a $500,000 property then your LVR was 105%.

If you have since paid the loan down to $400,000 then your LVR is 80%.

Your LVR may in fact be even lower than this if your property has grown in value.

Nevertheless, once your LVR is at 80%, you can remove the guarantee and avoid the cost of Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI).

Some people are under the impression that the guarantee is automatically removed when you owe less than 80% of the property value. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case!

You need to apply for a loan guarantor release otherwise it will stay in place for the life of the loan.

If you or your parents really want to, some lenders will actually allow you to remove the guarantee once your LVR is at 90%. However, you’ll have to pay an LMI premium.

Removing the guarantee at 90% LVR

You’ll need to internally refinance your mortgage.

If your bank isn’t offering you a competitive rate then it may be worthwhile to speak to us and we’ll let you know which other lenders are available.

Keep in mind that different banks will value your home at different amounts. We can order an upfront valuation with more than one lender which allows you to choose the lender with the highest valuation.

Removing the guarantee at 80% LVR

With most lenders, we can complete a valuation request and they will remove the guarantee without changing the loan.

One lender that works in this way is St George Bank.

With other lenders like CBA, their guarantor loans are set up as two loan accounts. One at 80% LVR and the other for anything in excess of that.

Because of this, you just need to pay off the loan account for the additional amount and you can leave the other remaining.

If your property has increased in value, you’ll need to increase your loan amount on the loan account in which you owe 80%.

If it’s all too complicated, don’t worry!

Just call us on 1300 889 743 or enquire online to discover how we can help.

When is the best time to remove the guarantee?

The ideal time to remove the guarantee is when you owe less than 80% of the value of your property.

There are several reasons for this:

  • You can potentially save thousands by avoiding LMI.
  • You may qualify for a lower interest rate.
  • It’s a simpler process with less paperwork.

We usually only recommend that you remove the guarantee earlier if there’s a need to do so.

Be aware of the guarantor’s future plans

Don’t forget that your parents or relatives have gone out on a limb for you to get into the property market.

Your obligation to them is to remove the guarantee as quickly as possible rather spending money on lifestyle.

Having a guarantee in place can stop your parents from fulfilling their future plans.

Being aware of their goals helps you to plan how soon you will remove the guarantee:

  • Other guarantees: Are your parents planning to support your siblings? In some cases, it’s possible to have multiple guarantees on one property.
  • Buying an investment: If your parents plan to buy an investment property they may not have sufficient equity with the guarantee. It depends on the loan structure.
  • Expanding their business: If they have a business loan then this may be secured on their property which means the guarantee can reduce their future borrowing power.
  • Selling their property: What if they sell the property with the guarantee on it? Some of the sale funds can be held in a term deposit as security for the guarantee until another property is found.

If you’re not sure what you should do, you can speak with one of our expert mortgage brokers by calling us on 1300 889 743.

You can also enquire online to find out how our credit specialists can help you.

What to do in tricky situations

Can my guarantor sell their home?

You should talk to us before they put their home on the market.

It’s possible for a portion of the sales proceeds (to limited guarantee amount) to be transferred to a term deposit temporarily while they look for a new home.

However, there are several options depending on the nature of your situation so please contact us to discuss what is right for you.

Can I sell my home?

Yes, you can sell your home.

However, you should be careful to make sure that the amount you owe plus any selling fees (estimate 3% of the sale price) are less than the price you sell your home for.

What if I don’t have enough equity?

There aren’t any ways around it if you don’t have enough equity to sell your property.

We’d recommend holding on until you have sufficient equity to remove the guarantee or put the property on the market.

What if I get divorced?

We can refinance your guarantor home loan to have you as the sole owner of your property and borrower on your home loan.

You can refinance your existing guarantee with a new guarantee as well.

If you’re required to pay out your spouse and there’s sufficient equity then this payment can be funded by the new home loan.

Contact us on 1300 889 743 or enquire online and we’ll help you to remove your guarantee.

  • Natasha

    Hi, my guarantor (dad) is thinking of selling his home, the property which was used to guarantee my home loan. I’m not sure what to do and what consequences will follow so can I have him contact you guys so we both can understand this?

  • Hey Natasha, it would be good if you would talk to us since our brokers have dealt with quite a few situations like this before and know what it will mean for you and your home loan. You can speak with one of us by calling 1300 889 743.

  • Andeat

    If I go guarantor on a commercial loan, will that mean I need to be a higher commercial rate?

  • Hi Andeat,

    You won’t pay a higher interest rate just because the commercial loan is being secured by a guarantor’s property. However, higher rates may apply depending on the loan amount: the bigger the loan, the bigger the discount you may be eligible for.

  • roman

    I want to remove my guarantor and refinance to another lender. Problem is that I’m on a fixed rate contract though not much left. Can you help?

  • Hello roman,

    Yes, we can help you with that. The main issue here for you can be break fees since these can be quite expensive. Please discuss your situation with one of our refinance specialists by calling 1300 889 743 or simply enquire online and we will contact you instead:

  • Sam

    I am looking at selling my property with CBA, it is set up with the split loan guarantor. The house value is less than the combined mortgages, so will the sale price be split between the loans or go entirely on the non guarantor mortgage?

  • Hi Sam,
    You’d need to talk to CBA about this. They would need to send this to their credit department for assessment. The loan split just in your name must be paid out. The other loan split can potentially be refinanced as a CBA personal loan so that the guarantee is removed.
    If you’re a customer of ours you can speak to our customer care team and they’ll investigate this for you.

  • barbara

    I paid off my home loan to 85% LVR and I’m thinking of removing the guarantee on my guarantor home loan. Would it be better if I wait or remove my guarantor now?

  • Hello barbara,
    The ideal time at which you should remove the guarantee on a guarantor mortgage is when you’ve paid off the loan to 80% LVR. This way, you won’t need to pay lenders mortgage insurance, you may qualify for a lower interest rate and it would overall be a simpler process with less paperwork. However, if your guarantor’s plans are on hold, you should talk with them as well as your mortgage broker or bank manager and come up with your decision.

  • Joanne

    Hello, our fixed portion of our home loan expires in July and we would like to remove my parents as guarantor. Are we able to swap lenders or do we have to stay with the bank that holds the guarantee?

  • Hi Joanne,
    Yes, you can swap lenders and we can help you with removing the guarantor and organising the discharge. The first step is get the main property valued and find out the LVR. If it’s below 80% then it all can be done easyily. If not, the guarantor can still be removed but you’ll need to pay extra. It would be best for us to reassess your situation to refinance and then recommend. Please call 1300 889 743 if you’d like to discuss this with one of us directly or simple enquire online:

  • Corinne Cross

    Hi there, I still have a guarantor on my home loan and want to remortgage a small(ish) amount for renovations. I did not have to pay LMI in the past. If I keep the guarantor do I just have to pay LMI on the amount I am remortgaging?

  • Corinne Cross

    Hi there,
    I have a guarantor on my home loan. If I wish to remortgage a small amount for renovations, do I only have to pay LMI on the amount I am borrowing?

  • Hi Corinne,
    You’d either need to remove the guarantee and pay LMI on the full loan amount OR you can keep the guarantee in place and refinance to a new guarantor loan that pays for the renovations. You’d need your guarantor’s approval to do this. Would they be ok with this? It may mean that they stay as a guarantor for a little longer.

  • Joey Thomas Parsons

    Can we seek a better deal with a guarantor on our home i.e. approach another lender seeking a better interest rate?

  • Hi Joey,
    Do you mean to refinance your current home loan to a new home loan with a guarantor?
    Yes you can do this, however not every lender accepts this. Most only accept a guarantor for a purchase.

  • Denise Forwood

    what happens if the guarantor has passed away

  • Hi Denise,
    You’d need to speak to a solicitor about this. However for the ownership of the guarantor’s property to change the guarantee must be removed or replaced by a new guarantee from the new owners. Sorry to hear about your dad, hope you are coping ok.