The world’s first mortgage contest® site has launched today, providing a revolutionary new way for consumers to shop for the best deal on their home loans. The Australian-developed and owned flongle® (www.flongle.com.au) offers crowd-sourcing style mortgage contests®, where borrowers can anonymously post what they’re looking for in an ideal mortgage and invite an open market of banks, non-bank lenders and brokers to “bid” to win their loan.
The brainchild of renowned Australian mortgage industry insider and passionate consumer champion Michael Lee, flongle® is a technological innovation that provides an easy, reliable and unbiased way for consumers to seek out and compare a range of mortgage deals, before choosing the one that best meets their needs, at the lowest price.
flongle® works like a mortgage broker, but unlike a broker, does not accept commissions from lenders, which means it remains totally unbiased and 100 percent on the side of the consumer. Flipping the industry model on its head, consumers instead pay a once off fee of $399 to post their self-serve mortgage contest® (or $799 if they’d prefer a flongle® mortgage expert to guide them from start to finish), which includes flongle’s guarantee that they’ll find the loan that best fits their need at the best available price, or their money back.
Early pilot contests have already unearthed savings amounting to thousands of dollars in just the first few years, for borrowers who already thought they had the best rates on the market.
flongle® mortgage contests® run for up to seven days, and can attract hundreds of bids from more than 50 lenders and mortgage brokers already registered and verified by flongle® at the time of launch. flongle’s proprietary technology then matches, ranks and filters all incoming bids according to how well they match the borrower’s requirements, as well as by cost, using easy to understand dollar-based comparisons which include fees that are usually hidden until it’s too late.
According to Lee, flongle® has been designed to put the power back in the hands of the borrower, in a mortgage market increasingly clouded by financial incentives, over-zealous marketing and smokescreens.
“For too long, consumers have been baffled by choice, complexity in pricing, an array of similar, but not necessarily the same features and some outrageously dishonest advertising and promises, which, largely, go unchecked. As a result, borrowers have lost their bargaining power, and flongle® is all about giving it back to them,” he said.
Every year, $2.1 billion in commissions is paid out to brokers in Australia , not including commissions or incentives paid out by lenders to their own staff, which are not legally required to be disclosed. Meanwhile, flongle® is attempting to make the process of hunting for a home loan more transparent, honest and fair for the consumer.
“The mortgage is without a doubt the biggest household expense for most Australians and yet too many people are on dud deals that leach away at their wealth and happiness,” Lee said. “Despite the massive impact their mortgage has on their wealth, most Australians just don’t have the time to learn what they need to know, let alone to apply it – which means they wind up handing their biggest and most important financial decision over to a salesperson.”
“There is a fallacy that mortgage brokers don’t cost the borrower anything because their commissions are paid out by the lender, but the reality is, a broker’s bias can end up costing you thousands if earning their commission comes ahead of genuinely finding the best deal for you. After all, anything from the loan amount, term and the features you choose can all mean more money for them,” said Lee. “This is why we think flongle® will be a game-changer. With flongle®, there’s nowhere to hide, just the hard facts in front of you – who’s offering you the best loan for your needs at the best overall price.”
flongle® can be used to source new home loans as well as to health check or refinance existing mortgages. “flongling” your mortgage usually takes less than two hours, from creating and launching the contest, through to reviewing bids and choosing the winning bidder. (Visit http://flongle.com.au/quick-tour to see how it works). The site also includes user friendly 60 second video tutorials, guiding borrowers through the process and providing additional education as they go. For more information on flongle, visit www.flongle.com.au.