Customer-owned banks dominate government-backed first home loan panel

  • By Christine St Anne

The National Australia Bank and the Commonwealth Bank are the two major banks to be appointed to the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme Panel with the remaining panel of 27 lenders dominated by mutual banks. 

The scheme will allow residential mortgage lenders to offer guaranteed loans under the deposit scheme which starts in January next year. 

The non-major lenders include: 

Non-major lenders:
Australian Military Bank 
Auswide Bank Bank Australia 
Bank First Bank of us 
Bendigo Bank 
Beyond Bank Australia 
Community First Credit Union 
CUA
Defence Bank 
Gateway Bank 
G&C Mutual Bank
Indigenous Business Australia 
Mortgageport 
MyState Bank
People’s Choice Credit Union 
Police Bank (including the Border Bank and Bank of Heritage Isle) 
P&N Bank
QBANK 
Queensland Country Credit Union 
Regional Australia Bank
Sydney Mutual Bank and Endeavour Mutual Bank (divisions of Australian Mutual Bank Ltd) 
Teachers Mutual Bank Limited (including Firefighters Mutual Bank, Health Professionals Bank, Teachers Mutual Bank and UniBank) 
The Mutual Bank
WAW Credit Union

All participating lenders are supporting the scheme by not charging eligible customers higher interest rates than equivalent customers outside of the scheme.

According to a statement from the National Housing Finance and Investment Scheme: “The initial panel composition achieves the government’s objective of promoting competition between the big and small lenders, and also ensuring that the Scheme has broad geographic reach, including in regional and remote communities”. 

“We welcome the news that three-quarters of this panel is made up of mutual banks and credit unions,” said Michael Lawrence, CEO of the Customer Owned Banking Association.

“This shows our sector’s strong commitment to serving first home buyers and providing competition and choice in the home loan market,” Lawrence said. 

“Customer owned banking institutions are excited to work with the Federal Government to help more Australians enter the property market.

“We appreciate the Government’s commitment to competition and choice by ensuring smaller lenders are so well represented in the scheme.” 

Consistent with NHFIC’s Investment Mandate, the non-major lenders will receive no less than 50 per cent of the initial 10,000 guarantees allocated in the current financial year. The 25 non-major lenders will begin offering guaranteed loans from 1 February 2020.