Top 10 Mortgage Brokers in NZ

Should I use a mortgage broker? And if I do use one, which one should I use?

These are questions we often hear at Opes Partners, which is why this article will break down our picks for the top 10 mortgage brokers in the country.

The investors we work with generally use mortgage brokers, which has allowed us to meet brokers who provide outstanding service … and we’ve met a few brokers who don’t.

That’s why we’ve created this list to share the mortgage brokers who we feel give fantastic service, and then to explain what makes each of them unique.

Ultimately, this will help you find the right mortgage broker that suits you.

Squirrel Mortgages

Squirrel Mortgages

Squirrel mortgages are predominantly based in Auckland. They’ve got about 28 mortgage advisers on staff … and we really do mean ‘on staff’.

That’s because Squirrel is the only firm where its mortgage brokers are paid a salary. Most mortgage brokers are primarily paid on commission.

This means Squirrel advisers don’t have a financial incentive to keep writing more mortgages.

John Bolton, founder and Chief Executive of Squirrel, made the decision to structure Squirrel this way because he feels his mortgage advisers will offer better advice.

Of course, that doesn’t mean that other mortgage advisers on this list don’t offer good advice … far from it. But, if you’re the sort of person who wants to deal with a larger company, and is worried about impartiality of advice, Squirrel may be the right fit for you.

One Rockstar broker we’ve worked with at Squirrel is Marilize Visser. We’ve worked with her many times and believe in the advice she offers to clients. And it’s no surprise that when you go on Squirrel’s Facebook page, many of the reviews specifically mention Marilize.

Lastly, it’s worth mentioning that Squirrel has 5 Chinese speaking advisers and 4 Indian speaking advisers. This makes Squirrel an attractive choice for the diverse communities of Auckland who may be more comfortable conversing in their first language.

Squirrel Mortgage Broker Logo
Tony Mounce

Tony Mounce – Tony Mounce Mortgages and Insurance

Tony Mounce Mortgages is the largest mortgage broking firm in Christchurch and the wider Canterbury area.

The company was founded and is still lead by Tony Mounce, who reigns as the top mortgage broker in the country, according to NZ Adviser.

Because he spent so much time working for the BNZ, he often knows bank lending policies better than their own staff. He uses that understanding to get mortgages approved and fight on behalf of his clients to get the best result.

If you choose to work with Tony, you will find him fast, efficient and extremely friendly. If you are looking to get the money you need to buy a house and want to get it done, Tony will be an excellent fit for you.

But, you also should be aware that because lots of people want to work with Tony, he is busy. He’s not the sort of adviser who will sit down with you over lunch to explain the basics of how a mortgage works.

If that’s the sort of hands-on advice you are looking for, then it may pay to work with a member of his team or another broker on this list.

Tony Mounce Mortgage Broker Logo

Mark Pullar & Toby Stanley – Roost

Roost is the only mortgage brokers on this list that specialises in the Queenstown and Otago markets.

Located in Arrowtown, the business is one of the largest mortgage brokers in the Queenstown Lakes District.

Both directors of the company, Mark Pullar and Toby Stanley, feature on NZ Adviser’s online list of the top 30 mortgage brokers in NZ by the total value of mortgages written.

Josh Graham, the final mortgage broker that completes the core team of three, was featured as one of NZ Adviser’s top 15 young guns for 2020.

If you’re looking for expertise directly related to Queenstown or the lower South Island, or looking for classic Southern charm, the team at Roost may be the right fit for you.

Roost Mortgage Broker Logo

Jeff Elias – Futurebound

Husband and wife team Jeff and Jacque Elias founded Futurebound in 2017.

It’s a Wellington-based boutique mortgage company, with one other mortgage adviser on the team, in addition to Jeff.

Jeff has created a 9-step Leaps and Bounds programme, which provides financial coaching depending on where you are in your life. You pay to join this programme and access the more tailored advice it offers.

In addition to the paid programme, Jeff and the team at Futurebound are setting themselves apart by creating and releasing content on their website to educate Kiwis about mortgages and money problems.

If you are solely looking for a broker who will get the lending at a low rate, then Futurebound may not be right for you.

On the other hand, if you want an adviser to guide you on all money matters, and want a long-term relationship, Jeff and the Futurebound team may be the right fit.

Futurebound Mortgage Broker Logo
Maria Thackwell

Maria Thackwell – The Maria Thackwell Mortgage Company

Maria Thackwell rose to become one of Westpac’s top mobile mortgage managers in Christchurch before striking out on her own to form the Maria Thackwell Mortgage Company.

Having worked with Maria, we know she is an extremely hard worker and a great educator.

That makes her an especially good fit for first home buyers who want to feel comfortable when getting their first mortgage and want someone to explain the process to them.

MTMC is a small, tight-knit team of 3. That means you can expect your dealings with Maria or her colleague Graeme to be personable and focused on your broader financial goals.

Maria Thackwell Mortgage Broker Logo

NZ Home Loans

NZ Home Loans are one of the largest brokers on this list, with over 70 franchises across the country.

That scale means their processes are down packed, and they have a reputable brand.

NZHL is unique in that its primary focus is to help Kiwis pay off their mortgages more quickly.

They have built their own software, DebtNav, which links into your bank account to show you how quickly your mortgage is shrinking.

If you’re the sort of person who is looking for a mortgage broker to help you pay off your home loan more quickly, NZHL will likely be an excellent fit.

We’ve had good experiences working with Kerry Augustine in Ponsonby (Auckland Metro), John McKee from Mandeville St (Christchurch), Emm McCartney from Canterbury Metro (Christchurch), Ben King from Timaru, and many other top performers from the company.

You do need to know that NZ Home Loans are wholly-owned by Kiwibank. That means there are only so many lenders NZHL advisers can help.

If you’re looking for a mortgage broker who will play hardball with banks to get the interest rate down, or you’re a property investor who wants to split bank, NZ Home Loans may not be the right fit.

But if you are looking to pay down debt more quickly, and get access to software to help you track that, NZHL may be the right fit.

NZHL Mortgage Broker Logo
Loan Market

Loan Market

Loan Market is another of the largest mortgage broking businesses in the country, with over 120 advisers.

They have an incredible team, with 13 advisers making NZ Adviser’s list of the top 30 mortgage brokers in the country by value of mortgages written.

Some of the team we have worked with include Cameron Marcroft in Remuera, Megin Wilton in Howick, and Bruce Patten from Greenlane.

An important difference between Loan Market and NZ Home Loans, the other large mortgage business mentioned above, is that Loan Market is not owned by a bank.

So, Loan Market advisers (like the smaller companies mentioned on this list) have access to over 20 different lenders you can potentially borrow from. That means you can use a split banking strategy.

That makes Loan Market a great fit if you want to deal with a reputable brand and plan to buy multiple properties.

Loan Market Mortgage Broker Logo
Vantage NZ

Andre Hutley From Vantage NZ

Vantage NZ Mortgage Broker Logo

Andre Hutley, of Vantage NZ, is a mortgage broker, and a property investor himself. Vantage has a team of six based in central Wellington.

When speaking about Andre, Opes Partners Managing Director Andrew Nicol says: “I know that he goes above and beyond. He’s been in the industry for so long, he gets a yes out of the banks, when others might get a no.”

If you’re based in Wellington and want to meet in person with your broker, then Andre may be the right fit for you.

Twine Financial Advisers

Eugene Bartsaikin – Twine Financial Advisers

Finally, our last mortgage broker on this list is Eugene Bartsaikin, of Twine Financial Advisers.

Having worked with Eugene to help several investors, we’ve been impressed by his ability to explain why he’s doing what he’s doing.

For instance, Eugene prepares a mortgage strategy proposal for every client, free of charge. This document details the unique challenges the investor faces, the top 2-3 lenders he has considered, and finally the top lender he thinks he should approach first.

This transparent and thoughtfully-explained approach helps investors to fully grasp what’s going on as they seek lending from different banks.

The Twine team is based on the North Shore in Auckland, but like other brokers in this list work with borrowers remotely, wherever they are in New Zealand.

If you’re an analytical type, who wants to understand why your broker is making certain decisions, then Twine Financial Advisers may be the right fit.

Twine Financial Advisers Mortgage Broker Logo
Which Should I Use?

Which Mortgage Broker Is The Best?

From reading this, you should take away that each mortgage broker is slightly different. And those differences range from their personalities to their services, to what they tend to focus on.

The purpose of this list isn’t to tell you which of these brokers is ‘the best’, but rather to help you find the best mortgage broker for you, depending on what you’re looking for.

Pick 2 or 3 from this list that sound good, check them out online, then give one of them a call.

You’re going to be sharing a lot of your financial information with these brokers. So, you’ll want to make sure there’s enough of a connection there so that you feel comfortable discussing your money-life with them.