There are many things you can do that will ensure you have a better financial future in 2017. And the new year is a great time to give yourself financial health check, including checking on your home loan. Giving your home loan a health check against new rules and changes to the home market is a fantastic way to start on the right track.

You could be missing out on thousands of dollars of savings. Whether you’re looking to ensure your home loan is still competitive, you’re considering an investment property, or are looking to unlock the equity in your home, a home loan health check is a great place to start.

Regardless of how long you have had your current home loan for, it may not be the most cost effective option. The home loan industry is changing on a daily basis due to the economic environment. Interest rate reductions, increased flexibility from products and new lenders entering the market are triggers to review your current financial status. As a general rule of thumb if you are able to reduce your interest rate by 0.5% or more and you’re planning on keeping your property for more than one year, it’s well worth shopping around for a new loan.

Spending at least 20 minutes once a year to look into what other offers are available could save you thousands of dollars which you can spend on something fun like a holiday or use to get ahead on your payments. It will also give you peace of mind knowing that your current home loan is working well for you.

There are some important questions about your home loan you should be asking yourself and your partner (if you have one).

  • Am I paying an unreasonably high-interest rate?
  • Am I paying outrageous fees?
  • Am I happy with the services provided?
  • Does my loan provide me with the features that I require?
  • Am I paying for services I don’t need or use?
  • Has my financial situation changed over time?

Want to know what to do next? Here are three tips that can help you with a hassle-free approach to your mortgage long-term:

  1. Re-evaluate your personal budget: Think about daily, weekly, monthly and annual costs that you can eliminate, even insignificant costs such as takeaway coffee and snacks etc.
  2. Track your expenses: You may be surprised where your money goes and how quickly it disappears. Use financial planning savings tools to see what you could save and how.
  3. Assess your loans, credit cards, and debt: Look into visiting a reputable mortgage broker to see whether there are ways you can off your mortgage, personal loans and credit cards faster.