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Frequently Asked Questions

Have a question? We've got the answers. Browse our frequently asked questions to learn more.

Got a question? 

If you are a Keystart customer and have a question, hopefully we can answer it here. Otherwise, feel free to Get in touch

  • Q What is Keystart about?

    Keystart was established 32 years ago to help Western Australians who might not qualify for a home loan from one of the traditional lenders into a home of their own. Our vision is to make the dream of affordable home ownership a reality for more people. Our low deposit home loans have provided an attainable pathway into home ownership for more than 118,000 Western Australians. 

  • Q Does Keystart charge lender's mortgage insurance (LMI)?

    No. As Keystart’s vision is to make the dream of home ownership a reality for more people, we don’t charge LMI despite our low deposit requirements. This can save you thousands. 

  • Q Is Keystart a government department?

    No. Keystart is not a government department. We are proudly an initiative of the Western Australian Government. We are a company with one beneficial owner, being the Housing Authority, and we are governed by an independent board of directors regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

  • Q How does shared ownership work?

    Shared ownership loans allow you to purchase a share in your property until you are in a position to buy the property outright. This helps to reduce your ongoing monthly repayments.  A co-owners agreement will exist between you and the Housing Authority that sets out your rights and responsibilities under this loan type. 

    Whenever you wish to increase your ownership share, the property will be independently valued and the value of the Housing Authority's share will be based on the market value of the property at that time.  

  • Q Can I increase my ownership in my shared ownership property?

    Generally yes, and we encourage you to do so. But the answer will be dependent on the type of shared ownership property you are looking at.

    If it is a ‘Flexible’ property you can increase your ownership whenever you can afford to.  Stamp duty concessions and incentives may apply.

    If it is a ‘Fixed’ property the Housing Authority will always retain their portion of the property. If however, you decide to sell your share back to the Housing Authority based on the current market valuation, you can use this equity to buy another property.

  • Q Can I sell my home at any time?


    If you wish to sell your home, a valuation will be conducted to determine the current market value and minimum sale price. The Housing Authority has the first option to purchase the property from you. If the Housing Authority does not take up this option, you can sell the property on the open market. Any capital improvements you have made to the property since the initial purchase will be credited to you and taken into consideration when calculating the value of the Housing Authority's share of the sale price. You can get a list of the possible capital improvements so you can see what may be included. 

  • Q How much difference will refinancing make?

    The real question on everyone’s lips is how much will I save. Like every aspect of the home loan experience, this answer will fluctuate between each person and situation. In most cases, the interest rate has the highest impact on your home loan repayments. Over the lifetime of a loan, this difference could equate to tens of thousands of dollars. Be sure to compare each lender's Key Facts Sheets so you are comparing 'apples with apples'. 

  • Q What do you do with my feedback?

    We’re dedicated to constantly improving our customers’ experience. As a valued customer, we’d really appreciate your honest feedback.

    We think it’s important for clients to be able to tell us what it is that we do well and what we could do even better. Your point of view is important to us. We read every response we receive.

    Any insights you provide will be used to develop our services and standards across the business, so feel free to get in touch. 

  • Q How do I move to another lender?

    Before you move to another lender, you need to get organised. Get your paperwork together and understand exactly where you’re sitting financially, what you want to achieve from the process and how far you’re willing to go.

    Then contact the lender you have picked. A lot of people prefer to head into a brick and mortar branch, but most lenders will have an online enquiry form. Start there but be prepared, there is a good chance you are going to need to be on the phone at some point and it’s not always a quick call.

    You will usually need to have enough equity in your home to meet the requirements of banks and other mainstream lenders. In order to calculate your equity, your new lender will do their own valuation on your home. Your lender’s calculation of the equity of your home may differ from your valuation.

    Remember, this is your money and your home. If you don’t like where the refinancing process is going, don’t throw yourself into a situation you’ll struggle to get out of. So, shop around, and don't be afraid to ask the big (and the little) questions.

  • Q Why should I switch?

    It’s nothing personal. We’re not telling you to pack your things and head for the door. We’re simply asking you to take a look around and think about what’s best for you and your financial situation. Keystart’s aim is to help more people realise their dream of owning their own home. We kick-start that process by requiring smaller deposits, no Lender's Mortgage Insurance (LMI) and a range of other benefits. However, once you begin to build some equity in your home, you may be able to get a better deal from another lender in the long term. This can include better interest rates, offset accounts and a number of other benefits that you can’t get with Keystart.

    Unlike other lenders, we encourage our customers to transition so that we can then help another person into home ownership.

  • Q Why is your interest rate higher than other lenders?

    Keystart’s interest rate is based on the average of the standard variable interest rate of the four major banks,  that is the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ), National Australia Bank (NAB), Westpac Banking Corporation (Westpac) and the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA).

    Our program is designed to help people get into home ownership earlier by lowering the upfront costs rather than offering the lowest interest rate on the market.

    While our interest rates may be above some rates you see advertised, Keystart's interest rates are currently below the standard variable rate offered by many mainstream lenders.

    And with Keystart only requiring a deposit as low as 2% and not charging lender’s mortgage insurance, you may save many thousands of dollars.

  • Q What is Keystart's complaints process?
    We're dedicated to constantly improving our customers' experience. As a valued customer, we'd really appreciate your honest feedback. If your experience has not met your expectations, we’d like to hear from you.