One of Australia’s largest mortgage aggregators and two non-major banks are testing a 100 per cent digital home loan service that offers buyers access to a conditional approval in their own time.
Comparison website iSelect has created a new digital home loan application service that will let home buyers secure conditional approval for home loans without the need to visit a bank or meet a broker face-to-face.
Unlike traditional mortgage brokers, iSelect Home Loans’ service is provided completely online and over the phone.
iSelect CEO Scott Wilson said the group’s home loan digitisation service was developed after recognising that many people found securing conditional approval for a home loan a “frustratingly arduous process”.
“There have been considerable advances in recent years in the streamlining and digitising of financial services such as opening bank accounts, managing stock portfolios and filing tax returns. Yet, acquiring conditional approval for a home loan is secured in a similar fashion to how it might have been done decades ago,” Mr Wilson said.
AFG, ING Direct and Macquarie Bank are working with iSelect to trial the service.
In the past three months, around 50 per cent of conditional approvals for the three lenders involved in the trial have been completed via the digital process, equating to more than 20 per cent of all iSelect home loan applications.
“By eliminating the need for face-to-face meetings with brokers and enabling customers to develop an ongoing relationship with them through phone and email contact, we have created a service that is more in tune with how people are accustomed to operating and communicating today… We feel we have created a digital process with a human touch,” iSelect’s financial services group executive Alan Caputo said.
Mr Caputo said customers are still required to provide all financials and undergo credit checks, but these can be provided electronically. Documents are sent via email and when required, the customer is called to provide a ‘verbal signature’ over the phone.
Macquarie Bank’s Ben Perham said customers are increasingly looking for financial products and services that make them feel empowered when it comes to managing their money.
“With the launch of this new digital home loan application service, iSelect has provided a simple and efficient online service that enables customers to apply for a home loan when and where they choose,” Mr Perham said.
iSelect’s home loans digitisation service is in trial mode and the company will continue to work with its partners to refine the process.
[Related: Aggregators blacklist new broking platform]
James Mitchell has over eight years’ experience as a financial reporter and is the editor of Wealth and Wellness at Momentum Media.
He has a sound pedigree to cover the business of mortgages and the converging financial services sector having reported for leading finance titles InvestorDaily, InvestorWeekly, Accountants Daily, ifa, Mortgage Business, Residential Property Manager, Real Estate Business, SMSF Adviser, Smart Property Investment, and The Adviser.
He has also been published in The Daily Telegraph and contributed online to FST Media and Mergermarket, part of the Financial Times Group.
James holds a BA (Hons) in English Literature and an MA in Journalism.
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