Advantedge Financial Services is like the dark horse of the finance industry. It’s there, behind the scenes and working its magic, but nobody sees it.
Advantedge has been around for over 25 years but was previously known as Challenger and changed its name when NAB purchased it. It acts as a wholesale funder specifically for mortgage managers. If you’re already banking with NAB, it might be news to you that it’s actually Advantedge managing your loan and NAB supplying the funds.
Advantedge funds many well-known banks like Homeloans Ltd, AFG Home Loans, Connective Essentials, Resi Home Loans, National Mortgage Company and Choice Lend. As a borrower, you will notice that your statements and online banking have another name there, not Advantedge.
So let’s get started with our review of Advantedge Financial Services and see if it really is the dark horse of the finance industry.
Note that this review, interest rates, and product information are correct as of 1 December 2022, and all of this information is subject to change without further notification. Any credit applications are subject to meeting the specific bank’s criteria, and the decision is at their final discretion.
Table of Contents
What are Advantedge Home Loans like?
The top 5 things Advantedge are good at:
- It works closely with Mortgage brokers. Advantedge has built up its business model by acting as a wholesale funder for mortgage brokers. So if you’re considering working with a mortgage broker (chat with us!), then it is a great option to consider.
- Lower Interest Rates For Big Deposits. If you have a large deposit, consider yourself #winning because Advantedge offers lower interest rates for those with a hefty deposit lined up as they price based on the LVR, which can work out cheaper for some people.
- Very competitively priced LMI. They have one of the lowest LMI prices in the market (based on our test scenario below) and could save you a few thousand dollars if you have to pay LMI.
- First Home Buyers and Investors. Advantedge is a good option for first-home buyers and investors because it offers pretty competitive interest rates for P&I loans and some good options for interest-only repayments. But beware, they do not have very good transactional or offset facility options.
- Fully assessed pre-approvals. Unlike some banks and other lenders who do not give you a real pre-approval, Advantedge will do a fully assessed approval. In other words, a credit manager will go through your information and verify that you are truly pre-approved, giving you more confidence.
The top 5 things Advantedge aren’t so good at:
- Complex loans & Bad Credit. If you have a particular circumstance that doesn’t meet standard bank policy, you may struggle to work with Advantedge as they have fairly rigid credit strategies. Also, if you have a bad credit history, getting a home loan approval could be difficult.
- Internet banking. The feedback from reviews and reports shows that Advantedge’s (and Connective Essential Home Loans) internet banking facility is extremely basic. You only have access to their account via their system, StarNet, and you will struggle to make large transfers to and from this account.
- Branch access. Another downside of Advantedge is that you won’t have access to a branch because they work through other banks. So if you enjoy waltzing into your branch with a whole list of questions, this one isn’t for you.
- The mortgage manager sets interest rates. Even though you’re lending through Advantedge, unfortunately, your chosen mortgage manager will have the final say on the interest rates. You’ll have to pay attention to the changes and fluctuations by your mortgage manager, not Advantedge.
- No offset accounts. Being a mortgage manager, its home loan products are a little restricted compared to many other banks. All you have is a really basic internet banking facility, a redraw facility and no offset account. This might not work for everyone.
What are the different home loan products they offer?
Advantedge provides a range of home loan products, all marketed under different names. You’ll find Variable, Fixed and Combo products. They seem to have removed the low-doc and non-resident options a little while ago.
The slightly confusing thing is that Advantedge uses a bunch of different brands, but the product in the background is the same.
It is also called the following, but they offer the same variable, fixed and combo products:
What documents does Advantedge need for a home loan?
Advantedge’s application checklist is fairly standard compared to most banks. Assuming you are a salaried employee purchasing your first home, they would ask for the following documents.
- Two of the three most recent computer-generated payslips, and at least ONE of the following:
- 3 months’ personal bank statements from a financial institution showing regular salary credit
- Australian PAYG Payment Summary for the most recent financial year
- ATO tax return for the most recent financial year
- Current employment contract OR letter from employer
- 100-point identification form and copies of supporting documents
- Verification of any rental income or other income
Plus, if self-employed:
- ATO Tax Returns and ATO Tax Assessment Notices for the last two financial years for both individuals, business entities, companies or trusts, including balance sheet and profit and loss statements
And for companies and trusts:
- ATO Tax Returns and ATO Tax Assessment Notices for the last two financial years, including balance sheet and profit and loss statements
- ATO Tax Returns and ATO Tax Assessment Notices for directors/guarantors for the last two financial years
(You can also check out Advantedge’s application form, which includes the document checklist on page 2.)
Read More: Home Loan Process [Step-by-step guide]
How much can I borrow from Advantedge?
Advantedge’s credit criteria are subject to change at any time, and all lending is up to credit verification and satisfactory approval. Still, as an indication, we have run the following scenario through their borrowing calculator:
- A single person living in Brisbane (In the 4000 postcodes)
- Earning $70,000 PAYG salary income
- Average monthly expenses of $2,000
- Has a credit card of $5,000 and no other debts
- Assuming this person has a 20% deposit and genuine savings
Figures as of 1 December 2022 are subject to credit criteria and will change without notification.
The results above show Advantedge is at the upper end of borrowing capacity compared to other lenders. It is $30,000 lower than the lowest, with a maximum borrowing capacity of up to $348,150.
In other words, if the same person applied with Advantedge versus the lender at the top, the maximum amount Advantedge would lend that person is $348,150 – compared to the bank at the top, which would lend up to $318,100.
These figures are indicative and would be subject to meeting credit criteria, valuation and satisfactory verification of all supporting documentation. They are accurate as at 1 December 2022 and subject to change without any further notification.
Would you like to know your borrowing capacity? Chat with our home loan experts to see what you can afford.
How much does LMI cost with Advantedge?
Lenders Mortgage Insurance is much cheaper with Advantedge compared to other lenders in the market.
Read More: Calculate your LMI Costs using our LMI Calculator.
What are some Advantedge customer reviews?
As mentioned before, Advantedge used to trade as Challenger, so its previous customer reviews are still under this name.
Customers’ overall satisfaction rate is at 46%, which isn’t a winning option compared to other competitors. The score was brought down because of a lack of convenience, which is a result of its unique structure.
Unfortunately, their score has dropped a fair amount since then, with very few positive reviews out there for Advantedge.
If we’re honest, Advantedge is not for everyone due to some of the inconveniences involved in setting up your loan, and it’s being managed by a different brand.
However, some types of loans would benefit from working with Advantedge, like those with a big deposit.
Who is Advantedge best for?
Advantedge is ok for those working with a mortgage broker and have had a chance to compare all the options among lenders.
It seems to have an alright product for a ‘set and forget’ type loan, which you don’t want internet banking and offset access to.
If you’re going out on your own and trying to work with Advantedge, we wouldn’t recommend them, as you will need to do a lot of research and hard work to figure out which mortgage manager has the best interest rate for you.
Remember that while Advantedge sets a recommended interest rate, this rate is discretionary to the mortgage manager, so always confirm the rate with your chosen brand before you go ahead.
How does Advantedge compare to other banks?
Overall each bank and credit Union has its own advantages and disadvantages, which will come down to your personal situation.
So does Advantedge sound like it’s for you? Speak to our team of mortgage brokers for a free consultation to figure out which home loan option is best for you.