Not as large as many of its competitors, Members Equity Bank stands out because of its unique affiliations with unions and shareholder strength. It offers relatively low-interest rates and highly practical home loan solutions with a commitment to low fees and responsible lending. ME may not have the most competitive rates on the market, however, but their simplified loan products and no-nonsense style are refreshing.
A simple home loan without the drama
This is ME Bank’s attractive variable rate loan. You’ll save a lot on fees and can make free redraws at any time on the funds you’ve built up, although there is a $500 minimum. You can borrow up to 95% of the property value, making this a worthwhile option for those searching for a good low deposit loan. If you do have a large deposit, you’ll enjoy a more competitive rate and can opt for interest only payments for up to five years.
A flexible home loan that fits your lifestyle
Add a few flexible features to the Basic Home Loan offered by ME, as well as a slightly higher variable rate, and you have the Flexible Home Loan. You can use an offset account to make your loan more affordable and can choose between a fixed, variable, and split rate option depending on which suits your financial goals. You’ll also be able to prepay even when you choose the fixed rate loan, up to $30,000.
This home loan package cuts back on the extra fees you have to pay
ME’s member package offers discounts that may be able to save you money in the long run. The package is only $395 a year, but offers lower variable and fixed interest rates than on their other home loan. In addition to this, you won’t have the shock of finding out you have to pay extra fees you were unaware of. This is because with the member package you won’t have to pay valuation fees, fees to fix your rate or split your loan after settlement or top up fees. All up, you may be saving approximately $950 by avoiding these extra fees.
ME is owned by a range of industry superannuation funds such as Australian Super, UniSuper and Hesta. In total, there are 26 superannuation funds have ownership over this bank.
ME is a participant in the Australian Government’s financial claims scheme, so your deposits will be covered by this protection guarantee.
Before you apply for a ME Bank home loan, you should have a good idea of what mortgage product you are interested in. Working with one of our experienced brokers can help you find the right home loan for your needs, financial situation and lifestyle. The application process begins with filling out the home loan application form on their website. Here, you will need to provide information about your financial situation, including your income, employment details, assets and liabilities (for example, any existing debt responsibilities) You will also need to complete a section about the purpose of your loan, including the type, size and location of the property you are purchasing and the amount you want to borrow. You will need to attach supporting documents to your application, including a PAYG summary, one payslip and tax statements if you are self-employed. Once complete, you will need to send your application via mail to the ME, Credit team at GPO Box 1345, Melbourne VIC 3001. You can also mail it to your local Mobile Banking Manager. If you are stuck on your application, you can book a consultation with one of their home loan specialists or arrange a meeting with a Mobile Banking Manager by calling 13 15 63.
The best bank for home loans is always the one that best fits your individual requirements and situation. However, ME Bank is known as a smaller bank that is able to offer competitive home loan packages due to its affiliation with unions and industry superannuation funds. The offer a range of low variable and fixed interest rates on home loans and in some cases, will lend up to 95% of the property price. However, they may charge higher interest rates on small deposits and can be strict about credit scores. It’s a good idea to work with a mortgage broker to ensure a ME Bank home loan is the right choice for you.
ME Bank offer mortgages to suit a wide range of lifestyles. From residential and investment properties to display homes and student accomodation, they have an array of flexible home loans to fit most living situations.
As with most banks, you can obtain pre-approval on your loan in anywhere from 4 hours to 2 weeks. However, once the vendor accepts your offer on a property, you will likely be required to wait out the cooling off period — which can vary from 2 to 5 days depending on the state you live in. Then, according to ME Bank’s website, it can take 6 to 8 weeks after the exchange of contracts for your loan to be officially processed.
As with most lenders, ME Bank has its own criteria that determines your eligibility for a mortgage. It also depends on the type of home loan you are applying for. To apply for a ME Bank home loan, you need to be 18 years or older, an Australian citizen or permanent resident or a New Zealand resident residing in Australia. You will need to have the following documentation at hand:
ME Bank will also likely want to see a clean credit report and minimal liabilities such as outstanding credit bills. To maximise your changes at getting successfully approved for a home loan, it’s best to work with a broker to ensure your financial records are up to scratch.