Banks' crackdown on SMSF lending continues
Several SMSF lenders have continued to tighten the conditions in place around lending, including loans for SMSFs, following strict benchmarks being imposed by APRA.
The banks, including NAB, AMP, ANZ and Bankwest, have all made changes to their lending practices to slow down the rate of investment and interest-only lending, which in some cases will have implications for SMSF loans, a mortgage broker specialising in SMSF loans told SMSF Adviser.
Thrive Investment Finance Brisbane's Samantha Bright said while some of the banks have made fairly minimal changes to their lending policies, other institutions have taken significant changes on board.
“The extent of the measures undertaken by each bank is an indication of how large their investment loan book actually is,” said Ms Bright.
AMP confirmed that since May it has sensitised all other expenses an SMSF may have at 7.5 per cent instead of taking actual repayments for loans to SMSFs.
An AMP spokesperson said the bank assesses a customer's ability to service a loan either through declared monthly repayments or a set factor rate, whichever is higher.
“This approach helps to create a buffer so customers can prepare for interest rate increases in the future, and forms part of AMP’s prudential lending,” AMP said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Bankwest said it had reviewed the acceptable loan to value ratio for investment purposes to ensure sustainable growth in the investment loan sector to protect both investors and the loan market.
An ANZ spokesperson said that for interest-only lending, ANZ will offer only advertised rates, with no discretionary pricing available.
Ms Bright said SMSFs that are looking to borrow and have the ability to provide good deposits and demonstrate affordability easily are unlikely to be impacted by the changes to lending.
“Someone who’s looking for their second or subsequent investment property may, however, see that their borrowing power has been impacted,” she said.
SMSFs that were borderline in their ability to obtain a loan before the changes were implemented should perhaps reconsider their choice to borrow anyway, and will certainly not be able to obtain a loan now, following these changes, Ms Bright said.
Miranda Brownlee is the deputy editor of SMSF Adviser, which is the leading source of news, strategy and educational content for professionals working in the SMSF sector.
Since joining the team in 2014, Miranda has been responsible for breaking some of the biggest superannuation stories in Australia, and has reported extensively on technical strategy and legislative updates. Miranda has also directed SMSF Adviser's print publication for several years.
Miranda also has broad business and financial services reporting experience, having written for titles including Investor Daily, ifa and Accountants Daily.