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Refinancing your shared ownership home loan

Refinancing your shared ownership home loan is a different process to that of a normal home loan, as there are two owners for your home; you and the Housing Authority. Read through this guide to help you navigate the process.

Flexible or fixed?

If you have a Keystart shared ownership home loan, your options for refinancing differ, depending on whether you have a fixed or flexible shared ownership loan.

Flexible shared ownership loan

If you have a flexible shared ownership loan and like to refinance your home loan to another lender, your new finance needs to cover the current balance of your loan with Keystart and the current value of the Housing Authority's share. You can view these details in the Get ahead section of our app.

Fixed shared ownership loan

If you have a fixed shared ownership loan refinancing your home loan is not an option for you.  However, you can choose to sell your home back to the Housing Authority

To check whether your loan is fixed or flexible, log into the Keystart app and view your account information on the My loan screen. 


Ready to refinance your loan to another lender?

Unlike other lenders, as soon as you can do so, we encourage you to move to another lender, referred to as refinancing your home loan. There are lots of good reasons for this. You might be able to negotiate a lower interest rate with your new lender, or you could have your new loan packaged together with other financial services products to get a better deal.

The other reason we encourage you to refinance is that, when you leave us, we can then lend to another Western Australian to help them into their own home, just like we helped you.

You may meet the criteria of other lenders when you have built up enough equity in your home. Equity is the difference between your home's market value and your remaining loan balance, usually expressed as a percentage.

How to know when you're ready to refinance

To refinance, most lenders want you to have at least 20% equity in your home.

You can build your equity by

  1. paying more than the minimum monthly repayment or
  2. if your home has increased in value.

Track your progress to 20% in our app

We have designed our app to help you track your progress towards 20% equity. The app allows you to check in on your home's estimated value and your loan balance, so you'll know when you're ready to move on and refinance with another lender who may offer lower interest rates and other benefits.

Plus you'll get loads of financial resources and can manage your home loan all in one place.

Watch your property value

Our app presents you with an approximate value for your home, giving you easy access to an indication of what your home may be worth.

There are also excellent resources available to help you research property sales in your suburb. Knowing more about your area gives you a realistic idea of your home's value.

One easy way to do this is to keep an eye on real estate websites to view sales for similar homes in your area.

Need to build more equity?

Building equity can take many years so you may need a long-term plan for refinancing your loan. You can make additional ongoing or once-off payments in the app to increase your equity.

Our repayment calculator can also show you the difference you can make to your loan by making additional payments.

Repayment calculator

Tracking your progress for shared ownership home loan

As the Housing Authority co-owns a share of your property, you'd need to pay out this share if you refinance or sell your home. Your new finance needs to cover the current balance of your loan with Keystart and the current value of the Housing Authority's share.

To calculate your equity

Typically the equity in your home is the difference between your home's market value and your remaining loan balance. 

To calculate your equity, begin with your estimated home value and then subtract both the estimated Housing Authority share and your remaining loan balance.

Track in the app

The Keystart app will show you an estimate of how much equity you own in your property and the Housing Authority's share. These details can be found in the Get ahead section of our app. See the example below. 

Check in on your home value.

Check in on your home's estimated value and your loan balance, so you know when to refinance and move on to another lender who may offer lower interest rates and other benefits. 

How to select your new lender

Consider your options

If you want to refinance to another lender, you'll need to pick the lender and loan product that is right for you. We'll need this information to arrange your refinancing. We can't make recommendations but you can do some research yourself.

Keystart recommends that you seek your own independent financial advice prior to making any decisions about your financial needs.

Do you have a broker?

If you have a mortgage broker you may wish to contact them as they may have access to special offers or a broader range of lenders.

Refinancing offers and options

We sometimes get approached by other lenders with refinancing offers for customers.

View current refinancing offers

In 2016, a portion of Keystart's loan book was assigned to Bendigo Bank. If your loan was assigned we would have informed you of this at the time. If that is you, you may wish to contact Bendigo Bank to discuss refinancing options as it may have refinancing offers that may suit you.

Comparing lenders' interest rates

Interest rates are often the key deciding factor for most people when comparing lenders for home loans.

When comparing rates, be sure to ask if the rate has a set period, often referred to as an introductory or honeymoon rate. For example, it may be that a rate advertised runs for the first twelve months of the loan but then reverts to the lender's standard variable rate.

You also need to check what loan-to-value ratio (LVR) the lender requires and if there is a minimum loan amount to qualify for the rate.

When comparing interest rates you may see an advertised rate below what you are paying with Keystart, but it's important you include all the costs associated with setting up a new loan with another lender, including things like

  • lender's mortgage insurance (LMI) may be applicable if you have less than 20% equity,
  • any fees and charges and
  • how much of a deposit you need to have upfront in order to qualify for a loan with a new lender.

Compare key facts sheets

To help consumers compare different lenders, all Australian lenders are required to provide key facts sheets, which include comparison rates on financial products including home loans. This is a very handy tool when comparing rates and home loans. Take a look at lender's websites to access key facts sheets for any home loan product.

You can view Keystart's key facts sheets when you look at each of our loan products.

Steps to refinancing your shared ownership home

1. Notice of Intent

The first step is to complete a Notice of Intent form. If applicable, you must also complete the Change of Name form and Owner Improvements Checklist to let us know any improvements you have made to the property. You can request these forms by emailing or calling 1300 578 278. Please return these forms to along with any receipts and shire approval.

Read improvements to your shared ownership home for more information on the Owner Improvement Checklist. 

2. Valuation

Next, we need a valuation of your home. The valuation fee is required to be paid up front. The minimum cost of your share of the valuation is $250. If the cost exceeds this amount, we'll cover up to $400, and any remaining balance should be covered by you. Detailed information regarding the amount needed for the property valuation and payment instructions can be found in the Notice of Intent covering letter. 

Once you've paid the valuation fee, we’ll arrange an independent valuation of your home. We use this valuation to calculate the value of the Housing Authority's share of your home in the current market. 

To ensure a fair valuation for all parties, we use independent, qualified property valuers. The valuer will contact you directly to arrange a suitable time to inspect the property. They'll contact you within two working days of receiving the valuation request from us. The valuation report will remain valid for four months. 

While the valuation report is not provided to you, it is used to create your Quote Statement.

Read more about the valuation process. 

3. Your Quote Statement

The Quote Statement provides you with a breakdown of: 

  • the valuation amount for your home, shown as market value,
  • the value of any home improvements, or the cost of any maintenance issues,
  • the value of the Housing Authority's share,
  • the balance required to pay out your Keystart loan, and
  • an estimate of the fees and charges involved in the refinancing process. 

The Quote Statement provides an estimate of the amount that the Housing Authority will receive at settlement from your settlement agent.

Generating your Quote Statement typically takes 3 - 4 weeks as it involves liaising with the valuer and the Housing Authority.

4. Finding a lender to refinance with

Once you have received your Quote Statement. you can then look for another lender to refinance your home loan. Your new loan must cover the balance required shown in the Quote Statement. 

You may find it helpful to view refinancing offers from other lenders.

5. Mortgage discharge request

Once your new lender grants unconditional finance approval, you are required to complete and submit a Mortgage Discharge Request along with your proof of unconditional finance approval to

This form needs to be provided to us before the valuation on your home expires.

6. Settlement

Once we've received the proof of unconditional finance approval, we'll process your Mortgage Discharge Request. 

The Housing Authority will then issue documents for you to sign and request an electrical safety certificate dated issued within the past 12 months. 

The documents will be lodged with the Office of State Revenue to confirm if stamp duty is applicable. This can take 6- 8 weeks for a response to be received. If stamp duty is applicable, this will need to be paid upfront to the Office of State Revenue. Speak to your new lender to see if the funds can be advanced.

On receiving a response from the Office of State Revenue, the Housing Authority will be in a position to accept a settlement booking from your new lender.

There's no need to appoint your own settlement agent as your new lender will have their own agent to manage the settlement on your behalf. However, If you are wanting to remove a party from the loan or change your name at the same time,  your new lender may require you to appoint your settlement agent.

7. Loan finalisation

Once settlement has occurred, the settlement funds will be deposited into your Keystart loan. We'll arrange to cancel any direct debit arrangements in place, refund any surplus funds and will issue a letter and a final statement confirming your Keystart loan is now finalised.

Frequently asked questions