Media Releases

FBAA’s White to speak to Canadian brokers

The executive director of the Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA) Peter White will travel to Vancouver this month to address the Canadian Mortgage Brokers Association’s national conference. Mr White said it was an honour to be asked and a testimony to the FBAA’s standing amongst finance broker peak bodies globally. He will also be meeting with their national board to discuss issues of mutual interest as well as meeting with the Financial Institutions Commission, the Canadian equivalent of ASIC. “We connected with many of the international associations as we prepared our submission to the current ASIC review, and we were able to learn a lot about how brokers worldwide are remunerated.” Mr White said the Canadian association is keen to learn from the success of the Australian third party channel. “With over 50 per cent of home loans being written by brokers in Australia we set the standard for mortgage...

Finance brokers association calls on banks to be responsible with interest rates after RBA announcement today

 The peak body representing Australia’s finance brokers wants banks to respond appropriately to the Reserve Bank decision today, whichever way it goes. Executive Director of the Finance Brokers Association of Australia Peter White, says he would be “appalled if banks continued raising interest rates if the Reserve Bank keeps official rates at an all-time low as predicted.” “When the banks increase interest rates because their profit margins are being narrowed, the cost regrettably has to be offset by the borrower. In the current climate this would be very difficult to...

“Super as deposit” survey just a media gimmick – Peter White

The Executive Director of the Finance Brokers Association of Australia Peter White says a survey by a loan bidding platform claiming young Australians want to use their superannuation for a home deposit, is simply a media headline and not viable. Mr White said the topic was a discussion point following the release of the Financial System Inquiry final report in late 2014, and while it does work in some countries, the Australian market is different. “I’m not against the concept, but the reality is that with the price of housing in Australia, many people in this demographic would not come close to having enough superannuation for a home deposit. “It also doesn’t take into consideration lending costs, LMI, legal costs, stamp duty and the capability of people to service the loan. He also pointed out that superannuation exists to support people at retirement and any attempt to use it for housing will open the doors for other uses, negating its ultimate purpose. “There are state-based first home buyers grants to assist people in this demographic to purchase their first home.” Mr White said while housing affordability is a real issue and options should be canvassed, this survey should be seen as what it is – an attempt by a sales company with little or no expertise in the superannuation, government housing or lending sectors to generate publicity for its...

FBAA strengthens small business links in industry first

For the first time, Australia’s 24,000 brokers have a voice at the table representing the interests of small business. In an industry breakthrough, the Finance Brokers Association of Australia’s (FBAA) Executive Director Peter White has been invited to join the Advisory Board of the Small Business Association of Australia (SBAA). “Most brokers are small businesses and now they finally have a vehicle in which their interests, concerns and ideas can be heard and acted upon,” Mr White said. The SBAA’s charter is to assist the small business sector to achieve their goals, minimise the rate of failure, and lobby and instruct all levels of government about the role and governance of small business. Mr White said being on the advisory board will help brokers access a greater array of support and communication for their business. “By joining the Advisory Board of the SBAA, the FBAA – through Mr White – is representing brokers from both a credit and lending point of view and also now on all small business issues and perspectives. Mr White attended his first SBAA Advisory Board meeting this month and was left in no doubt about the benefits of having a seat at the table. “Being able to talk about our industry was extremely positive and I know brokers will be excited with the future outcomes that will flow from being able to communicate directly to this key small business peak...

Broker body supports ombudsman amalgamation

The peak body representing Australia’s finance brokers has endorsed some of the key elements of the Ramsay Review’s interim report on external dispute resolution. The report recommends a single industry Ombudsman scheme for credit, financial, investment and small business disputes to replace the existing Credit and Investments Ombudsman (CIO) and the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS). Executive Director of the Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA) Peter White said while the association welcomes the recommendation to unify the CIO and FOS, it has concerns about the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) also coming under the same scheme. “The ASBFEO should be left as a stand-alone Ombudsman because its responsibilities and dispute resolution matters are entirely different from those being dealt with by the CIO and FOS. “While the FBAA supports the CIO and FOS uniting, a future single Ombudsman must be properly staffed and budgeted appropriately to deal with the increased number of cases,” Mr White said. “It is economically sensible to combine both financial schemes but at the same time, we do not want to see a negative monopolisation to the market which impacts everyone involved. “One Ombudsman is better from a consumer and user perspective provided they have the necessary resources to ensure the issues are dealt with quickly and efficiently, which is not the case at the moment.” Mr White said brokers will benefit in the long-term having a single Ombudsman which is properly resourced and staffed and able to deliver swift outcomes to disputes. “Small businesses will also be better served with their own Ombudsman who can focus on issues relating to their...

Brokers warn car buyers to have finance pre-approved before purchasing

The peak body for Australia’s finance brokers is urging car buyers to do their due diligence and use a reputable lending professional when accessing finance for motor vehicle purchases. Executive Director of the Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA) Peter White said buyers should always have finance pre-approved in principle before entering a car yard to assist them in comparing different terms and conditions. “There has been wide publicity recently about the risks of motor dealership finance, particularly in light of the BMW decision to refund customers who were victims of irresponsible lending decisions. “Car buyers who use dealer finance have to make sure the person providing the finance is professional and is governed by a strict code of conduct and audit measures. It also provides security if they are a member of an industry body like the FBAA.” Mr White said it only takes a phone call or a simple online search to see if they are a member of a professional industry body. “Some motor dealers wrongly believe they are exempt from responsible lending guidelines, and the result is borrowers being given loans with terms and conditions that are not in their best...

FBAA continues consultation over ASIC funding model

The Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA) remains in ongoing discussions with Treasury and key profile industry stakeholders regarding the proposed funding model for the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). Under its second proposed funding model delivered to industry last month, Treasury wants Australian Credit Licensees (ACL) to pay a yearly base fee of $1000. For those ACL-holding intermediaries (brokers), an additional levy of $1.14 for every extra $10,000 they write above a $100 million threshold is also proposed. Executive Director of the FBAA Peter White says many questions need to be asked about this model and most cannot be answered at this stage because of the limited data available. “From what we know, the FBAA argues this model will not deliver a fair and equitable outcome. Furthermore, at the last critical meeting with Treasury where the FBAA was the sole association representing brokers, we were advised that the maximum that ASIC can recover is $15.8 million. “There are too many unknowns to support the proposed model and ACLs would end up paying much more of the $15.8 million needed to fund ASIC’s Cost of Recovery.” Mr White also argues the $1.14 levy could seriously erode the financial viability of smaller ACL holders, who could fragment to ensure they remain under the $100 million threshold and not be liable for higher costs. It is also important to note that the $1.14 levy could be as little as five cents but more data is needed to make this determination, which the FBAA has called for. “These fees will also create entry barriers, increasing the risk of driving ACL holders back to being credit representatives. This could shrink the...

FBAA says new EDR scheme has big benefits

The Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA) has endorsed some of the key elements of the Ramsay Review’s interim report on external dispute resolution. The report recommends a single industry Ombudsman scheme for credit, financial, investment and small business disputes to replace the existing Credit and Investments Ombudsman (CIO) and the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS). FBAA Executive Director Peter White said while the association welcomes the recommendation to unify the CIO and FOS, it has concerns about the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) also coming under the same scheme. “The ASBFEO should be left as a stand-alone Ombudsman because their responsibilities and dispute resolution matters are entirely different from those being dealt with by the CIO and FOS.” Mr White said while the FBAA supports the CIO and FOS uniting, a future single Ombudsman must be properly staffed and budgeted appropriately to deal with the increased number of cases. “It is economically sensible to combine both financial schemes but at the same time, we do not want to see a negative monopolisation to the market which impacts everyone involved. “One Ombudsman is better from a consumer and user perspective provided they have the necessary resources to ensure the issues are dealt with quickly and efficiently, which is not the case at the moment.” Mr White said brokers will benefit in the long-term having a single Ombudsman which is properly resourced and staffed and able to deliver swift outcomes to disputes. “Small businesses will also be better served with their own Ombudsman who can focus on issues relating to their field of...

Broker winner picks FBAA as his membership of choice

The winner of the National Finance Brokers Day (NFBD) ‘So You Think You Can Broker’ online contest has chosen the Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA) to fulfil his membership needs. Bernard Desmond is a private broker having made the transition from retail banking. He captured the voters’ attention with a passionate video submission detailing his broking aspirations. “Through my banking experience, I have seen how much the FBAA is doing in looking after the interests of brokers and promoting the industry to the wider community.” FBAA Executive Director Peter White congratulated Mr Desmond on his success and thanked him for joining Australia’s premier finance broking association. “Bernard will be a major asset to the broking profession and you only have to spend a few minutes with him to realise his passion for making a difference to people’s financial outcomes,” said Mr White. Mr Desmond believes private broking is the future and will take over the mortgage distribution space because customers now demand personal and detailed interaction when making such an important financial commitment. “I work by the ‘CARE’ acronym with choice, advice, research and education being the pillars of what a good broker should aspire to.” The 33-year-old also aims to be a mentor spreading the word to the younger generation about selecting finance broking as a rewarding career path. “I want to inspire young brokers and share with them what I have done but more importantly what can be done,” he...

Brokers advice on mortgages as bank interest rates rise

With major lenders currently raising their interest rates, the peak body representing Australia’s finance brokers is urging mortgage holders to consider the option of changing from variable to a fixed rate. Peter White, Executive Director of the Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA) says it is not surprising the big banks are raising interest rates independently of the Reserve Bank keeping official rates at an all-time low. “We have been saying for all of 2016 that it was inevitable the banks will increase interest rates because their profit margins are being narrowed. The cost unfortunately has to be offset by the borrower. “For the moment, bank interest rates remain attractive, so fixing your rate can be economical but it depends on the borrower’s individual circumstances,” he said. Mr White said some fixed rates are cheaper than variable rates, and there are options to fix only a portion of the repayment. “Consumers should be able to reassess their mortgage and be released from fixed interest rates at times of rising rates however many banks still attempt to charge these fees.” His advice to borrowers is to consult their FBAA finance broker if they are unsure about whether their situation warrants a re-evaluation of their mortgage. “Brokers are experts and provide the advice most suitable to the needs of a mortgage...
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