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Refinancing your home in Malaysia to buy a property in Australia

Updated 19 Oct 2018 – By Loanstreet


Many Malaysians dream of starting over in a new land, one that comes with better prospects and a higher quality of life.  

Australia is one of the countries that exemplify that dream for Malaysians, with over 10,000 expected to migrate this year.  Unsurprisingly, the country is home to Melbourne, the world’s most liveable city for five years running.

For many Malaysians who have made a home in Australia, the feedback is positive with so many finding rewarding employment and engaging in profitable businesses.

How can you get your hands on the money you need to make the big move and buy quality property in Australia? If you already own property or have made some headway with your current mortgage, the answer could lie in refinancing.

Refinancing As a Source of Funds

If you have owned your Malaysian home for some time (say, five years or more) and it has appreciated in value, you can ‘pull’ some of that money out through cash-out refinancing.  The equity you have built on your home can be a good source of funds to use for further investments.

For instance, you could utilise the surplus cash from refinancing your current home to pay for costs associated with buying another property (e.g. Down payment and other moving fees).

Cost of Refinancing

The cost of refinancing is equivalent to that of taking out another loan, but it could be cheaper in the long run if interest rates are now lower than your initial mortgage.

It’s a good option if you are out of your lock-in period and will not suffer any penalties for refinancing. Some people choose to refinance their home loans purely for lower interest rates and better terms.  

Properties in Australia

There is a wide range of property options in Australia but from the perspective of both an investor and live-in buyer, apartments make for a solid choice in terms of price when compared to landed properties.

On average, it usually gains higher rental yields than that of landed homes.

Apart from price concerns, live-in buyers and investors will also look at convenience factors that add to the liveability and appeal of a certain locale.

For example, apartments sited near to the Melbourne Central Business District (CBD) enjoy greater accessibility to convenient features such as public transport, good schools and commercial centres as well as connectivity to universities within the CBD.

Moreover, the vacancy rate, which is a percentage of available units in a rental property, is currently at 2.1% in Melbourne and that is below Australia’s national average of 2.3%. Lower vacancy rates are desirable as it points to a strong rental demand market.

Furthermore, off-the-plan concessions (only applicable in Victoria) will help early buyers save thousands in stamp duty.

What else do you need to know about buying property in Australia?

If this is your first time buying an international home, you’ll need a guide to help you manage and understand the process, each step of the way. An Australian property expert is a much needed part of the equation; these consultants will advise on the purchase and provide support for documentation and act as a liaison on your behalf.

If you are making the purchase purely for investment purposes, without intent to live in the property or be present in Australia, you may still require property management assistance for rentals and resale, etc.

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