What is a second mortgage?
A second mortgage is a charge over a property that already has another mortgage on it. The mortgages are ranked in the order in which they were lodged. In the event that the debt isn’t paid and the property is sold the lenders will receive their money in order of priority with the 1st mortgage being paid back before any money is paid to the 2nd or 3rd mortgagee.
For example if you had a mortgage with Westpac for $100,000 secured on your home and you then applied for a $100,000 loan with ANZ this would be set up as a 2nd mortgage behind the Westpac loan. In the event that you didn’t pay back your loans and the property was sold for $190,000 then Westpac would be repaid in full and ANZ would receive whatever was left over.
Why would you use a second mortgage?
Most people prefer to refinance their loan to another lender rather than obtain a 2nd mortgage. However there are some situations where a 2nd mortgage is more appropriate:
Fixed rates: If your 1st mortgage is a
fixed rate loan then there may be high exit fees or you may not want to refinance because your fixed rate is much lower than the current variable rates. In this situation you may borrow additional money using a 2nd mortgage.
Guarantor support: If you are helping your children buy their first home then you may guarantee their loan using a 2nd mortgage over your property as additional security for the bank.
Private lenders: Many private lenders that can advance funds within 48 hrs will take a 2nd mortgage behind a major bank as security for their loan. We recommend that you avoid using private lenders at all costs.
How much can you borrow?
2nd mortgage with the same bank: up to 95% of the property value.
Discounts: Lenders rarely offer rate discounts on 2nd mortgages.
Note: The lender that has the 1st mortgage has to consent to you obtaining a 2nd mortgage on your property. They do not usually stop you from doing so, but will usually charge a fee of around $300 for assessing your request.
Why are the banks so conservative?