(AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)
(AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

Absa is out to get first-time home owners

By Staff Reporter Time of article published Jan 16, 2019

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CAPE TOWN - If you are a first-time home buyer than Absa is out to help you achieve this in 2019. 

The financial institution, in an effort to win back market share, will be taking on more risk in getting more first-time buyers, according to chief executive Maria Ramos. 

Absa is SA's third-largest lender and at once stage had more mortgages on its books than any of the other local banks. The company lost this competitive edge once it was acquired by Barclays in 2005. 

Retail and Business Banking chief executive, Arrie Rautenbach, told Bloomberg that Absa has "the confidence to boost our lending book in a tough macro environment".

“Absa is sitting on a balance sheet of over a trillion rand – we are definitely able to take smart, additional risk on that.”

Ramos expects that Absa will increase its revenue at distinctive speed from 2019 to 2021.

So what does this mean for young buyers? 

Absa is in plans to boost its lending power especially in its housing, vehicle, and personal finance divisions. 

Rautenbach also intends to develop Absa’s share of the new mortgage market from 20% to 28%. 

This will hopefully be done in the next 5 years. 

How does he plan to do this? 

Simple he hopes to expand in the affordable housing market and to specifically target young first-time buyers, who may not have the strongest credit records. 

“When we talk about young professionals we are comfortable to lend at, let’s call it 100%, because we have taken a different view on the risk assessment,” Rautenbach said.

“We back the jockey, we back the property, we back a number of different things to allow people to come into this market earlier,” he said.

“We have got to make sure we can lend and then the rest – such as growth in transactional banking will follow on the back of that,” said Rautenbach. 

“The mortgage business is an anchor product.”

Applying  for a home loan

The most important part of the process when applying is research. Make sure you know what is required of you. 
  • Do u know what the benefits of a deposit? 
  • Do you know what your credit score is? 
  • Have you calculated what you can afford? 
These are the basic questions you need to ask yourself, especially if you are a first-time buyer.  


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