Nearly 80 per cent of brokers believe that borrowers who are not fluent in English should get help with their home loan in their native tongue, according to a new survey.
According to a HashChing survey, 78 per cent of brokers surveyed said that they believe mortgagors should be able to get help with their mortgage in their mother tongue.
As such, the online mortgage platform has introduced a new feature in its mortgage broker finder to enable borrowers to find a broker that can speak their language.
HashChing has said that the brokers using the platform collectively speak a total of 64 languages and dialects, including the top 10 languages spoken by a person at home in Australia (such as Mandarin, Arabic, Cantonese and Vietnamese as well as the major European languages).
Atul Narang, HashChing’s CIO, said that ensuring borrowers could communicate with their broker in their first language was “key part” of ensuring that borrowers felt 100 per cent comfortable with the broker they used for their home loan, and gave brokers an edge over the big banks.
He commented: “The needs of multicultural Australia aren’t being adequately serviced by the big banks when it comes to applying for a mortgage. It’s the most significant financial decision that anyone can make, and yet there’s no easy way to find home loan help in a specific language.
“Understanding the intricacies of a home loan is hard enough when it’s explained in plain English, but imagine how much more confusing it would be if you weren’t a native English speaker.”
Mortgage Choice Fairfield broker Michelle Ivanov, whose team speaks 17 languages, commended HashChing for “stepping up and ensuring that everyone — regardless of their country of origin — can easily find a broker who’s best placed to help them purchase their own home”.
Ms Ivanov said: “Often we get borrowers from non-English-speaking countries come to us after a bad experience dealing directly with one of the big banks.
“Applying for a home loan is a huge decision, and the language barrier means they’re often left more confused than ever after meeting with an English-speaking bank manager.
“Having the right support structures in place to help immigrants find the best home loan for their needs should be something that every financial institution offers as standard.”
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