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Federal government should support borrowers and SMEs: MFAA

by Charlotte Humphrys11 minute read

Borrowers and small-business owners should be prioritised in the upcoming federal government budget, the brokers’ association has said.

The Mortgage & Finance Association of Australia (MFAA), has released its pre-budget submission for 2024–25, which encourages the federal government to prioritise borrowers and small-business owners in its upcoming budget.

In the MFAA’s submission, the association focused on four key areas for the federal government to explore.

Firstly, the association called for improved customer outcomes by “preserving and enhancing competition” in residential mortgage lending.


The MFAA recommended that the federal government should implement the ACCC Home Loan Price Inquiry recommendations, including adding brokers as a point of contact when borrowers are prompted to review their home loan, as well as when borrowers request to discharge from their current lender.

The submission also said that it supports government Home Guarantee schemes, but continues to advocate for borrowers to apply for the initiatives through mortgage brokers, considering brokers make up 71.5 per cent of the market share, according to MFAA stats.

In its pre-budget submission, the MFAA highlighted the importance of mortgage and finance brokers and their influence on the Australian economy, particularly as inflation and cost-of-living pressures continue to negatively impact Australians.

The association also called for more funding initiatives to support small broking businesses as they manage enhanced cyber security risks, which are essential to protect businesses and customers. It suggested that this could include grants to small businesses to implement cyber security software and continuing to fund the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) so it can continue to deliver “practical guidance” to small businesses.

Prioritising “fit-for-purpose” policy and regulatory changes for mortgage and finance brokers was also a key priority in the MFAA’s submission, particularly for regulatory costs such as those from the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA).

The MFAA highlighted that mortgage finance brokers accounted for less than 0.5 per cent of all finance-related complaints that the AFCA received and therefore argued that regulatory costs such as these should be proportionate to the risk that the industry generates.

Environmental sustainability was also a centrepiece of the MFAA’s pre-budget submission, suggesting that the federal government should “co-invest” with the broking industry to achieve net-zero emissions and environmental sustainability.

Anja Pannek, chief executive of the MFAA, said: “The Federal Budget presents an opportunity to focus on assisting Australian households and small businesses to weather challenging economic conditions through enhancing competition in the home loan and business lending sectors and continuing to ensure regulatory and policy settings for the mortgage and finance broking industry are fit for purpose.”

Speaking on the MFAA’s previous pre-budget submissions, Ms Pannek continued: “Reflecting on our 23–24 budget submission, pleasingly many of our recommendations shaped government policy, including the expansion of government home guarantee schemes to positively increase home ownership rates, the reinvigoration of the Home Loan Price Inquiry to deal with discharge issues and the expansion of the mortgage broker reference checking protocol.

“And, through our 2024–25 pre-budget submission we continue with our ambitious policy agenda for the benefit of our members and the mortgage and finance broking industry.”

[Related: Brokers need to be included in Help to Buy scheme: MFAA]

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