Online property sites Domain and Realestate.com.au have both announced moves into the home financing market this week.
Realestate.com.au signing a new strategic mortgage broking partnership with NAB and is acquiring an 80.3 per cent stake in Smartline, an independent mortgage franchise broking business.
Smartline has more than 300 advisers nationally, settling more than $6 billion in loans annually with a total loan book of approximately $25 billion.
The real estate leader and NAB have also agreed to build a mortgage broking solution, which adds to the strategic partnership announced in December 2016 to create an Australian-first end-to-end digital property search and financing experience.
REA Group CEO Tracey Fellows commented: “We’re excited to be partnering with NAB to build a new mortgage broking solution. The way people want to look for and buy property is changing. We want to make it easier for Australians to access the help and experience of a mortgage broker through the digital channels they’re already using to find their new home.”
Meanwhile, Executive Director of Financial Services Andrew Russell claimed the partnership will give the company a strong foothold in what is an increasingly important channel, and he said that for consumers, choice of lender is an important consideration.
At launch of realestate.com.au Home Loans, brokers will be backed by one of Australia’s most recognisable real estate brands, presenting a vast pool of new client opportunities and market-leading digital engagement expertise that will deliver customers a seamless home lending experience.
Fairfax-owned Domain is launching ‘Domain Loan Finder’ in partnership with leading home loan platform Lendi.
The online tool allows buyers to connect with more than 30 lenders, including major banks, coupled with access to a national community of home loan specialists for personalised help and expert advice.
Domain Chief Executive Officer, Antony Catalano, said: “This is a very important strategic announcement for Domain, and means we are the first major real estate listings portal to move beyond helping our audience find a home to helping them secure a home. Domain will be Australia’s first end-to-end property search and finance platform.”
“Domain Loan Finder helps consumers apply for loans that are genuinely available in the market – it is not just another rates comparison website.”
The company says is will launch Domain Loan Finder in early July and will operate as a joint venture with Lendi’s parent entity, Auscred Pty Ltd, with Domain holding a 60 per cent stake. The amount invested in the JV is not material and remains confidential.