Aussies beat the financial crisis and start saving again

It’s taken ten long years for the repercussions of the financial crisis to stop biting at Aussie wallets. So now that many are breathing a sigh of relief, what are Aussies doing with their new disposable income? It turns out that many are taking the sensible route and investing their hard earned cash in banks, superannuation and investment properties. Gone are the days when cash is stashed under the mattress, as recent statistics show that household bank deposits are almost 1.8 trillion dollars. Similarly, superannuation contributions last year totalled around 95 billion and a record high 23% of Australians now hold investment property.

In the same period, the demand for bank loans has decreased which suggests not only are Australians investing more, but they are being more careful with their money. So why all the saving? Research from MyBudget suggests that holidays, rainy days, and big ticket items are the three top reasons to save at the start of 2015. With around half of the people surveyed saying they are saving regularly, the future is bright for Aussie savers and their families: Check out the infographic to find out more!

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Skills you need to boost your banking career in 2015

Paycheck

With a surge in the global economy, recruitment seems to be on the plan for most financial organisations. Recruiters however will be working harder to match skill sets more acutely in the upcoming years.

Technological advancements, globalization of the banking sector and increasing regulations have been the major influencers for hiring trends across the world. To secure rewarding banking jobs in Hong Kong or anywhere in Asia, a generic skill set or plain flexibility will not be sufficient anymore.

Honing the skills in the below mentioned areas of expertise increases the chances of boosting your banking career in 2015.

Handling the big data

IT specialists in the banking sector who are proficient in harvesting and collating big data must now learn to formulate actionable strategies using this data. Technical experts with the skill to pull of big data with maximised security will be able to give banks the competitive edge.

Risk and Compliance

Compliance and risk assessment specialists are in demand across the globe. The emergence of Asia as a prominent centre of private wealth and the insecurities poised by economic instability and political flux globally will see the areas of compliance and risk booming in 2015. Garnering sufficient knowledge and learning about various asset management techniques will help secure overseas opportunities.

Strategic Analysis and Modelling

Sifting through excel sheets is no more just enough. Banking professionals are increasingly seen as strategic leaders who can organize internal operations and productivity and at the same time keep an eye out for the newer trends and opportunities. To be a banker standing above the average competition, one must be able draw to strategic insights and offer actionable recommendations from business intelligence.

Customer Relationship Management

With an increase in the number of high end customers in private banking, a new light will be thrown on the importance of personalized customer service. Many leading research and finance based organisations including eFinancialCareers have reported an increase in the hiring for customer centric roles across Asia. An analysis of the information from these forums indicates that a sound customer service attitude is a key driver for success in the banking sector.

Unbound by time and demand, some skills like agility, linguistic skills, strong leadership skills and good communication have proved to be catalysts for a career in banking. In 2015, the collective growth of soft skills and niche expertise guarantees success in the banking sector.

Best Home Loan Interest Rates for Refinancers

Refinancing is the process of signing a new loan to pay out your current home loan/mortgage. Whether you’re looking to refinance so you can benefit from the best home loan interest rates, increase flexibility on your loan or add extra features, making the switch can actually leave more money in your pocket, if done correctly. This is why it’s imperative to look at all options prior to making a decision on refinancing your loan.

Choose the Right Loan

If you’re looking to refinance, you are most likely already aware of the types of loans available to you. From fixed interest loans and line of credit loans to variable rate loans and package loans, there is a lot to consider. Take a step back to see why your current loan is no longer working and which loan actually offers what you need. Be sure to slow down and read the fine print – what may look like a promising loan with a low interest rate may actually charge your more after a set period, or incorporate lots of hidden fees.

Be Aware of what it Costs to Refinance

Yes, refinancing may eventually be more cost-effective and affordable long-term, but you may incur some substantial fees in the initial. These fees can include the loan application fee, valuation fees, settlement fees, lender’s mortgage insurance (LMI), exit fees and stamp duty. Look at your current home loan terms and conditions to have a better understanding of what costs you may incur when refinancing your home loan. It’s better to have these fees under control then be unpleasantly surprised after you’ve been approved.

Gain Better Insight into the Refinancing Process

As with anything concerning large sums of money, being prepared and having an idea of what to expect is half the battle when choosing to refinance. Generally, refinancers talk to mortgage brokers or financial advisors to assist them in finding the right loan. Some mortgage brokers can even assist you with your application. In order to have the best chance at having your application approved, your potential new lender will need to see information regarding all your loans, six months’ worth of statements for all home/personal loans, your most recent rates notice and building insurance policies. Once a loan is chosen and approved, you can expect the process to reflect the following:

  1. Your current lender will be notified of the change and your mortgage being ‘discharged’ or paid out
  2. A payout figure is given to you once your current lender knows the date of settlement
  3. Your new lender pays off your outstanding loan
  4. The deed to your property is transferred to your new lender

Many choose to refinance to help relieve financial stress and benefit from an alternative loan that suits their lifestyle and budget. For more information about the types of loans and interest rates available, talk to a professional lender or mortgage broker who can provide you with a range of options tailored to your specific needs.