Mortgage comparison start-up spells opportunity for advisers and home buyers

by Maya Breen19 Oct 2016
New mortgage comparison site, Mortgage Hub, aims to be the go-to destination for property buyers, particularly first home buyers struggling to get into the market.  

Speaking to NZ Adviser, co-founders Prashant Trivedy and Santhan Kusam said through their own experiences in looking for property, they noticed the buying process to be a tedious one and set out to do something about it.   

“Getting a mortgage is a big deal, but it doesn’t have to be a painful experience,” says Trivedy. 

“There were a few areas we thought could be improved. Firstly, there wasn’t a destination for first home buyers to easily educate themselves on mortgages. Content on bank sites or other sites targeting investors is usually filled with jargon and is hard to understand for the newlywed couple looking for their first home. Secondly, comparing rates either involved visiting multiple bank websites, or going to sites that are geared towards experienced home buyers who know what they are looking for. Lastly, lots and lots of paper.”

The duo both come from technical backgrounds, previously working together as software engineers in banking. Trivedy says he regrets not using the services of a mortgage adviser during his property search and is set on bringing adviser services front-of-mind to the first home buyer via Mortgage Hub. 

“I went the traditional route of scouring Trade Me and asking my existing bank for their rates. I didn’t really understand the market well, or whether the rate I got was ideal - which it wasn’t,” says Trivedy.

“There are pros for both the adviser or direct to bank route, but I think for first home buyers, using the services of a mortgage adviser can be invaluable.”

They claim the Mortgage Hub platform will highlight the best rates from leading banks and will also show how prospective buyers’ repayments might change based on different loan amounts and interest rates.  

“Currently, when users compare rates, they have the option to submit an enquiry to one of our partner advisers,” says Trivedy. “To the adviser, Mortgage Hub is essentially a lead-generator.”

Kusam told NZ Adviser, “When the user is ready to take the next step, we are going to connect them with some of the best mortgage brokers in New Zealand to help them through the application process. 

“We are also working very hard to implement some innovative features to digitize the application process, and streamline every step of the home buying journey.”

Trivedy added, “For mortgage advisers, we want to provide high quality leads by connecting the users of the website with an adviser exactly when they need the help, hence increasing the probability of a successful lead. We would also like to act as a source of information that advisers could refer their clients to.

“We are looking to give our partner advisers more visibility on our website as well, so they can showcase their testimonials and success stories of their clients."

Trivedy said Mortgage Hub as it is now is only the beginning. “With our strong emphasis on the technology behind our platform, the possibilities are endless,” he says. “We have started with the low hanging fruit of mortgage comparison and education, but we see digital loan applications and robo-advice as exciting prospects. 

“We’re also looking at potential comparison platforms for other financial products. We’d love to chat with some advisers who are excited about being first movers and helping shape some of our upcoming products.”

The first version of was launched in July 2016.

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