Otto Dargan works as the Managing Director and Sales Manager of the Home Loan Experts. He handles the training and development of our team of mortgage brokers as well as the management and strategy development of the company.
Otto’s passion for real estate, investing and financial services has compelled him to create a business with a strong service focus that’s often lacking from the services offered by other brokers and the major banks.
Most mortgage brokers are salesman, not experts. Otto holds our mortgage brokers to a higher standard, which is why our systems, people and training are considered to be some of the best in the industry.
Otto began his career in finance at Mortgage House in 2003 after leaving university. He started right away as a mortgage broker in one of the branches and found that he enjoyed working on the tougher loans that other brokers didn’t want to deal with.
After four years working as a mortgage broker, he decided to start his own company that would allow him to help people with loans in a more flexible environment, with a broader choice of lenders.
In December 2006, Dargan Financial was founded and has since expanded rapidly. In 2009, the company name was changed to the Home Loan Experts as this new name better suited our growing online presence.
Otto has created his own training program for our brokers based on his own experience and a variety of other sources. He has a focus on continuous improvement which has driven him to complete a management course, learn public speaking and to continue to learn more about different areas of finance.
Australia’s Brightest Broker 2011 & 2012
In 2011 and 2012, Otto won the Broker IQ competition run by St George Bank and The Adviser, (a mortgage industry publication).
The quiz is designed to test mortgage brokers on a range of topics including general finance, product and industry knowledge.
Over 1,000 of Australia’s best brokers entered the competition and were put through a series of difficult tests to find just six finalists.
In both 2011 and 2012, the final was hosted by Australian TV game show legend Larry Emdur at The Adviser’s Australian Broking Awards. In 2011, Otto not only came first in the quiz, he actually doubled the next closest contestant’s score! In 2012, he returned to defend his title and once again was named Australia’s Brightest Broker.
Steven Heavey, the General Manager of St George Intermediary Distribution, presented Otto with a cheque for $10,000 for winning the competition. Read more in The Adviser‘s report on the competition.
Otto in the news
Otto has been quoted in several publications including:
- Australian Broker Online – Choice comments on lax lending standards.
- Australian Broker Online – Pension changes to affect the mortgage industry.
- Australian Broker Online – Home Loan Experts: Growing Beyond The Borders.
- Australian Broker Online – Are you ready to head offshore?
- Australian Financial Review – Tighter investor lending rules will speed up foreign investment in property.
- Domain – First home buyers consider credit cards to cover deposit shortfall.
- Domain – Financing studio apartments.
- Domain – Mixed use properties.
- Gold Coast – How do lenders view the Gold Coast?
- Herald Sun – ‘CommBank clamps down even further on investor lending’
- Herald Sun – ‘Lenders take a home loan holiday by leaving interest rates alone’
- Herald Sun – ‘Fixed rate home loan deals begin to rise for borrowers’
- Herald Sun – ‘Mortgage customers are being warned of fixed-rate deals’
- Herald Sun – ‘A majority of Australians are keen to invest in property’
- Herald Sun – ‘Darwin apartment value losses raises concerns for NAB’
- Herald Sun – ‘Banks withhold rate cuts to its customers as RBA meets to discuss further interest cut’
- International Business Times – ‘Australian banks earn extra $1.4 billion by keeping half of RBA interest rate cut’
- International Business Times – NAB lists postcodes facing high default risks – Sydney suburbs among the highest.
- Mortgage + Finance Help – Can your profession save you on your home loan?
- Mortgage Professional Australia – BOQ raises rates on existing investor loans.
- Mortgage Professional Australia (page 2).
- Mortgage Professional Australia – Lending to Foreigners.
- Mortgage Professional Australia – Guarantor Loans.
- Mortgage Professional Australia – My Toughest Test.
- Mortgage Professional Australia – Positive Credit Reporting.
- news.com.au – ‘Fixed interest rates can be expensive if customers don’t review their rates once the term ends’
- news.com.au – ‘Lenders take a home loan holiday by leaving interest rates alone’
- news.com.au – ‘Home loan customers do not know what interest rate they pay’
- news.com.au – ‘Same-day home loans on their way’
- news.com.au – ‘Home loan customers miss out on savings as the big banks play scrooge’
- News.com.au – First-home buyers are making a comeback with a helping hand.
- News.com.au – Reserve Bank keeps low interest rate on hold, homeowners warned against being ripped off.
- News.com.au – Banks use interest rates as high as nine per cent to determine home loan serviceability.
- News.com.au – Banks continue their crackdown on investor home loans.
- News.com.au – Borrowers are confused on what is a good interest rate.
- News.com.au – Borrowers with small deposits for a home are getting stung.
- News.china.com.au – 银行提高房产投资者首付要求 Bankwest最多贷款8成.
- NineMSN Money.
- NT News – ‘Mortgage customers have no equity in their homes’.
- Perthnow.com.au – How to take control of your home loan
- Perthnow.com.au – Property owners set to miss out on further rate drops.
- Smart Property Investment – Can overseas property investment work?
- Smart Property Investment – Should you consider a guarantor loan?
- Sydney Morning Herald – ‘Size is important: Warning off-the-plan buyers could struggle to finance small apartments’
- Sydney Morning Herald – ‘Fixed mortgage rates slashed as banks bet on RBA cut’
- Sydney Morning Herald – ‘Restricted postcodes’: NAB names suburbs where credit risk getting worse.
- Sydney Morning Herald – Lenders ‘conservative’ with low-deposit loans.
- Sydney Morning Herald – Interest rate gap between investors and owner-occupiers to widen.
- Sydney Morning Herald (bottom).
- Sydney Morning Herald – Banks more cautious on high-risk home loans.
- Sydney Morning Herald – Mining Towns.
- Sydney Morning Herald – SMSF Risks.
- Sydney Morning Herald – Macquarie joins clampdown on property investors.
- SydneyNepal – The story behind Nepal’s first BPO.
- The Adviser – Mortgage Broker Efficiency.
- The Adviser – Prize-winning broker lands marketing grant.
- The Adviser – Smart Business.
- The Adviser – The Word.
- The Adviser – Top Sydney firm continues expanding.
- The Adviser – Western Sydney broker crowned Australia’s best.
- The Advertiser – Australian home loan borrowers must be prepared for more interest rate rises ahead.
- The Advertiser – Home loan customers being urged to lock in rates
- The Advertiser – Property owners set to miss out.
- The Australian Newspaper.
- The Courier Mail – Size is important: Warning off-the-plan buyers could struggle to finance small apartments
- The Courier Mail – Rates honeymoon over as Australian fixed-rate loan deals are lifted.
- The Courier Mail – National Australia Bank baulks at lending in Brisbane hot spots.
- The Courier Mail – Banks continue their crackdown on investor home loans.
- The Daily Telegraph – ‘Investment loans get hit again after CommBank hikes interest rates’
- The Daily Telegraph – ‘The Commonwealth Bank puts a stop to refinancing investment home loans’
- The Daily Telegraph – ‘First-time buyers ask parents for financial help to buy property’
- The Daily Telegraph – ‘Lenders take a home loan holiday by leaving interest rates alone’
- The Daily Telegraph – ‘What should you do with the interest rate drop?’
- The Daily Telegraph – Foreign incomes do not count for temporary residents buying property in Australia
- The Daily Telegraph – ‘Banks use interest rates as high as nine per cent to determine home loan serviceability’.
- The Finance Professional.
- The West Australian ‘WA worst in country for little or zero home equity’.
- Property Observer – ‘Loans.com.au woos investors amid CBA-Bankwest moves to shun refinancing’
- Your Investment Property Magazine (page 3).
- Your Mortgage Magazine – ‘What Australians can do with the rate cut’
- Your Mortgage Magazine – ‘Rate cuts still coming for home loan customers’
- Your Mortgage Magazine – Discounts For Professionals.
He also writes a blog and a monthly column for Smart Property Investor Magazine.
Having not been through the mortgage process before, I wasn't sure what to expect.
Our mortgage broker explained each step along the way and made dealing with the bank and getting our first home a stress-free and very positive experience.
I highly recommend his services and would use him again without hesitation.
I would recommend Otto to anyone without hesitation. He was always prompt and helpful whenever I had questions and made the entire process stress free. Thanks for all your help and advice, Otto!