How to be a first home buyer

While many first home buyers might feel thwarted by escalating property prices in some capitals, plenty are still taking the plunge, spurred by low-interest rates and the great Australian dream of owning your own piece of turf. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics1, first-time buyers currently account for about one in six home loans. […]

Reserve Bank of Australia has again opted to leave the official cash rate on hold at 1.5%

With celebrations for the race that stops a nation in full swing, the Reserve Bank of Australia has made this decision. The Reserve Bank of Australia decided to once again leave the official cash rate unchanged at 1.5%. The rate has not changed since September 2016. This outcome was widely predicted by financial commentators. With […]

All in the family

The trend for adult children to remain in the family home for longer is putting a strain on their parents. But there are ways to make it work for everyone. If you have a happy marriage and a comfortable home, studies indicate it’s more likely your children will delay moving out. Well, they’re not silly, […]

How to make a smart switch

Switching home loans could help pay down your mortgage sooner, providing you are refinancing for the right reasons and understand what’s involved. Here’s our guide to refinancing to help you make the right move when the time comes. Know the costs Paying 0.5 per cent less per annum on a $250,000 principal-and-interest mortgage will save […]

Different loan types

Finding the right home loan is as important as finding the right property. There are literally hundreds of home loans available, with new products emerging all the time. An AFG broker can help you find a loan that suits your particular needs, help you complete the paperwork, professionally package it with your supporting documents and […]

Guide to home loans

Variable Variable rate loans often provide additional flexibility and are the most popular type of home loan in Australia. As the name suggests the interest rate is variable and therefore fluctuates with the Reserve Bank of Australia’s movement and the cost of the financial institution sourcing funds to lend. Variable rates are generally broken into […]

Investing in property

Research and having the right people to help you are the keys when investing in property. It definitely pays to do your research on the property market before you dive in, and we’re thrilled to be on board to help you when it comes to financing your decision. Recent share market slides, tight rental markets […]

Don’t wait to innovate – how innovation could be driving your business further

Australian firms are striving to do things better despite a lack of time, a recent study concludes.  The country’s biggest and smallest companies see themselves as the most innovative, according to the National Australia Bank’s Business Innovation Index. The index, compiled by NAB Labs in partnership with the University of Melbourne, surveyed more than 500 […]

Clever business tech tools to improve business efficiency – lessons from the startups

Startups and small businesses are different beasts, but that doesn’t mean one can’t learn from the other. Startups are focused on growing ideas into big businesses as fast as possible. It makes sense they would utilise the most efficient tools of the trade. Andy Lamb, co-founder of Perth’s Atomic Sky startup studio, specialises in helping […]

Holding business to ransom — what is ransomware and what do I need to do to ensure my business is safe?

Small business owners have been warned to step up their computer security processes as ‘ransomware’ attacks become more prevalent and sophisticated. Cyber security experts have dubbed 2016 the Year of Ransomware with attacks that lock computer databases increasingly targeted at Australian businesses. Small to medium businesses could be more vulnerable to attack, a Perth academic […]

Money for nothing

The best things in life are free, especially when money is up for grabs. From government benefits to special grants and shopping rewards, there is plenty of funding available if you know where to look. Here’s our guide to help you cash in. Additional rules and restrictions apply in all cases (and are subject to […]

Innovation nation – how the government is helping small business

The Government wants to encourage entrepreneurs to think outside the box with a range of recent changes to remove the stigma – and some penalties – around business failure. The Government’s Innovation Statement has been roundly welcomed by small business, with changes to insolvency and tax laws aimed at encouraging businesses to push the envelope. […]

And the award goes to…

The Productivity Commission’s (PC) draft report into Australia’s workplace relations framework does not look set to make major changes to the country’s idiosyncratic system of award wages, much to the chagrin of business. The old saying goes that a good compromise is one that leaves all parties equally unhappy. And by that yardstick the PC […]

Investment lending effected by property prices

The property booms in Sydney and Melbourne have begun to affect investment lending and have ripple effects for borrowers throughout Australia. Earlier this year, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) grew concerned about skyrocketing property prices. They asked the major banks to ensure their investment lending did not grow by more than 10 percent. When investment lending […]

Renovate Right

It’s been more than 25 years since Tom Hanks and Shelley Long showed us the calamitous side of renovating gone wrong in the comedy movie, The Money Pit, but the warnings ring loud and clear today. With a sluggish property market, many homeowners are opting to renovate rather than relocate. Before you hit the hardware […]

Budget Bonanza

The budget gave small business something to smile about, but big business is waiting for more. Are you reading this on a new laptop or tablet? You may already be reaping the benefits of a Budget which promised something special for Australian small businesses and delivered in spades. Council of Small Business Chief Executive Peter […]

The smart money is on you

By world standards, Australia is a wealthy nation. We have a strong economy with high employment and a far rosier outlook than most developed countries. And yet almost half (47 per cent) of us are anxious about our finances, according to research by the Boston Consulting Group. Finance guru Paul Clitheroe reckons most Australians want […]