flagFounded: Founded in 1895, acquired by CBA in 2008

businessOwned by: CBA

monetization_onFunded by: Retail deposits and wholesale capital markets

securityLMI Provider: QBE LMI

account_balanceLender type: Major Bank

BankWest was a major home loan provider on the West Coast until their success with mortgage brokers enabled them to lend Australia wide. During the GFC, their parent company faced tough times and sold BankWest to CBA.

BankWest has a range of simple and competitive home loans for first home buyers and investors. They operate separately to CBA with their own home loans, pricing and lending policy.


How do BankWest’s home loans compare?

They’re great at

But they’ve got some drawbacks…

Coronavirus / COVID-19: Bankwest policy changes

In light of the current global coronavirus pandemic, Bankwest have started requesting additional information about customers to ascertain, if there’s been any impact on their income or their ability to meet existing debts/expenses.

All new applications now needs to be submitted with Bankwest’s – COVID-19 Additional Responsible Lending Questions – Home Lending form as well.

Bankwest is now able to use the JobKeeper payment for the servicing of PAYG borrowers. The following documents for proof of income are required with the loan submission:

  • a copy of the most recent payslip including the JobKeeper payment;
  • the base income prior to 30 March 2020.

Bankwest will only use the JobKeeper payment income only if your current salary is less than the pre-COVID-19 income.

The bank also recently announced that:

  • They’ll accept 100% of allowance income. For loans greater than 80% of the property value, an employment contract/letter outlining the allowance amount and frequency will be required.
  • For PAYG borrowers, 1 payslip showing YTD figure for 2 pay cycles, or 2 most most recent consecutive payslips, or Australian bank account statement showing 3 months salary credits is acceptable.
  • For self-employed borrowers, they now require all BAS (Business Activity Statements) from the end date of financial statements provided and most recent 1-month primary trading statements along with financials & tax returns. For sole traders who do not complete financial statements 2 years personal tax returns will be required.

Coronavirus / COVID-19: Bankwest mortgage relief

Bankwest home loan customers who are in need of support due to COVID-19 have the option to defer their home loan repayments for six months.

Please note that, by pausing your repayments, the interest that you’d have normally paid during the deferred period continues to accrue and is added to your outstanding home loan balance, to be paid after the deferred period.

This means that your outstanding balance will increase, and you’ll pay more interest over the life of the loan.

After the deferral period, your loan term is extended as required to help keep your repayments similar to what you were originally paying.

The option to apply for deferring your home loan repayments is available through their online banking.

In addition, Bankwest has announced that to support its customers impacted by COVID-19, they’ll waive the $135 Home Loan Transfer (HLT) fee which is charged for rate changes, product changes and when splitting or combining a home loan in non-packaged products.

This waiver is effective immediately, and is automatically waived on all deals.

What home loans types do they have?

The majority of BankWest’s home loans are designed for home buyers and investors. They have their Complete Variable and Premium Select Home Loans which are great options for most home buyers.

Their Complete Fixed Home Loan often has competitive interest rates, however it always pays to shop around if you are locking your rate in for an extended period of time.

They also have some niche products such as their Senior’s Equity Release which is designed to help retired people to access the equity in their own and for interest to capitalise until they sell their property later.

In addition to this they have some flexible lending policies such as the ability to approve larger properties on a case by case basis and to accept some people who didn’t save their deposit themselves.


Tips for getting a great rate with BankWest

BankWest offers much better interest rate discounts if you have a larger deposit or lots of equity in your home!

In other words if you have a small deposit, then you may be better off choosing another bank.

If you have a larger loan over $750,000 then a mortgage broker may also be able to put in a request for negotiated pricing.

Use BankWest’s application submission checklist to prepare for your home loan application.

Note: This is the latest submission checklist effective January 2017. Please refer to BankWest for their most up-to-date document requirements.


Bankwest client story: Belinda, VIC

Goal

  • Refinance her two properties and remove her ex-husband from the title.
  • To get a better valuation than the one provided by two other lenders so they could avoid LMI (Lenders Mortgage Insurance).

Situation

Buying out an ex-partner, refinance, investment, free bank valuation.

Background

After 10 years of marriage, Belinda and her husband made the tough decision to separate.

During the legal battle, Belinda was awarded the family home and an investment property they owned.

Both mortgages needed to be refinanced so they were just in Belinda’s name but after two valuations by two separate lenders came in under value, the Loan to Value Ratio (LVR) for the refinance came in over 90% for each of the property values.

This meant a large LMI bill that the couple felt they could avoid or at least reduce if they could get a better valuation.

Solution

Our broker was able to refinance Belinda and her husband from Commonwealth Bank (CBA) to Bankwest, who was offering free upfront valuations at the time.

Coming from a regional part of Melbourne, the broker found that even though CBA and St George ordered their own valuations, they were actually done by the same valuer!

Bankwest actually used a different valuer for the area and was able to refinance Belinda at 85% LVR for the owner-occupied and 88% LVR for the investment property.

Not only was Belinda able to reduce her LMI bill but she was able to get a sharp 3 year fixed interest rate (one of the lowest on the market at the time) and cash out a total of $40,000 from both properties as extra funds for the offset account.


Compare BankWest to other lenders

Not sure which lender is right for you? Not sure which BankWest home loan you should choose? Our Home Loan Experts can help!

Talk to one of our mortgage brokers by calling us on 1300 889 743 or complete our free assessment form.