Mortgage insurer Genworth has flagged new product innovation to drive mortgage growth in a lacklustre credit market, including the imminent release of a 'graduate program' targeting first homebuyers.
Speaking an PLAN Australia's national conference in Darwin last week, Genworth CEO Ellie Comerford told brokers the insurer was looking at a number of possibilities for new products that could help more borrowers into the market.
"We have got to be more cerebral - we have to do more segmenting and targeting against the borrower base," she said.
"Our job is to get people into homes and keep them there, so we have to find ways to get people loans that make sense, and not treat them all the same way," she said.
Comerford revealed that a new key initiative would be to provide backing for struggling first homebuyers, who were now buying homes second latest in the world according to group's international mortgage trends data.
"We have designed a program for young professional people who are qualified, employed, but that don't have that history we wanted in the past. We have designed the product, it will be called the 'graduate program'," she said.
Comerford said the lending industry was also talking about continued innovation such as shared equity loans, 'family pledge' products, and even an 'accordion' loan design from India.
"That's a loan that, as interest rates go up, payments remain the same and the term of the loan is moved," she said. "That means people are in a position to pay as they can handle any vagaries of the market," she said.
Comerford said the advent of 35 to 40 year mortgages in Australia would assist more buyers into the market.