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Lending Mortgage Insurance (LMI) API

Lending Mortgage Insurance (LMI) API

Lenders will require you to purchase a rather costly LMI insurance product if they are lending you more than 80 percent of the value of your property (or you have a Loan to Value Ratio of more than 80%). The Loan to Value Ratio (LVR) is the amount you’re borrowing represented as a percentage of the property's value.

LMI is a double-edged sword. It permits entry into the property market for those that don’t have a 20% deposit (or for products, more specifically, that don't permit LMI-exempt loans above the 80% LVR threshold), but it does add another cost to your loan that can often be avoided.

Loan calculators, LMI Calculators, and other similar tools are one of the most searched terms in search engines so it stands to reason that you're obligated to provide such features on your website. As an essential component of your marketing funnel, it's a 'kind' of gamification that adds value to your website experience.

This article introduces our LMI API before we make our LMI website plugin available to the broker market.

LMI Calculator

Pictured: The complimentary LMI calculator. Unlike other similar calculators that are often charged at a premium to brokers, our LMI calculator is integrated with a website (it's not a JavaScript tool embedded via an iframe). Details on the LMI Calculator are available in an article titled "Complimentary Lender's Mortgage Insurance Website Calculator".

We've always had an LMI tool supplied to certain tiers of our clients but we've recently made the decision to release a number of our plugins to the general market at no cost, since brokers would otherwise never have the features made available to them. We've committed to providing a number of website plugins and tools to the finance industry so they're able to build upon their website experience, and seriously enhance their organic and paid marketing funnel.

LMI API

There are a number of LMI providers and they all have their own set of criteria so it's difficult to provide a one-size-fits-all approach - particularly when the LMI premium various depending upon product, promotions, occupation, or lender. In order to provide the most accurate results we've modeled our data on Genworth's premium since they tend to represent the majority of the insurance market, and they tend to be preferred by the major banks. At this stage it's only Genworth's data that is returned although when we're comfortable with the results provided by other providers we'll return that information as well, and filter the results by lender.

The BeliefMedia Core plugin will create your API Key by sending your email and website details to BM upon activation. Please don't download or install the plugin if you don't want to register.

The endpoint of https://api.beliefmedia.com/platform/api/finance/finance.php requires a valid API Key.

Required URL parameters include property_value, loan_amount, fhb (yes or no), state (nsw, qld, vic, tas, nt, sa, wa, act), occupancy_type (owner_occupied or investment), and loan_term (30 for up to 30 years, 35 for 31 to 35 years, or 40 for up to 40 years). The request requires your apikey, current page url (the domain must match that which was registered), and the action of lmi.

A response will unfold as follows (the response is from the pictured front-end example):

1
<?php 
2
Array
3
(
4
    [status] => 200
5
    [code] => 200
6
    [data] => Array
7
        (
8
            [premium] => 22386
9
            [capitalised_loan_amount] => 582386
10
            [capitalised_lvr] => 97.06
11
            [gst_included] => 546
12
            [cost_to_lender] => 24024
13
            [security_value] => 600000
14
            [lvr] => 93.33
15
            [loan_term] => 30
16
            [stamp_duty] => N/A
17
            [disclaimer] => This is an estimate only as provided by the BeliefMedia API. Verify the value with your LMI Insurer. Designed to match Genworth Premiums.
18
            [time] => 1626068186
19
        )
20
 
21
    [message] => Array
22
        (
23
            [0] => ok
24
        )

If you're building your own tool you should call the beliefmedia_finance_get($atts) function, where $atts is an array of the required URL parameters. The function returns the data array if successful, or false.

You should note that we return more details that you'll likely use, and the cost_to_lender field generally shouldn't be disclosed. In addition to the standard LVR and premium we also return the capitalised_lvr and capitalised_loan_amount (in the above example we exceed Genworth's 97% cap so capitalisation likely wouldn't be available in this case). We also return the rationalised GST amount charged to the borrower (included in the premium) and stamp duty if applicable (not included in the premium).

Responses are cached on our end for a very short time and this is indicated by the time timestamp. The results change very rarely so it's likely you'll see cached results for up to a week. If there is a change to the LMI premium we'll respond very quickly. In a previous version of this free plugin we'd cache results on your end but this no longer applies since we want you to have full access to your historical usage data (it should be noted that our Premium Mortgage Calculator interactions are recorded so you have a full appreciation of your audience... and we're the only marketing company in the finance space to offer this essential feature).

Complete calculator usage statistics are available by sending a request to the endpoint with an action of lmi_stats and your API Key. Only basic data is returned for free users - your usage data is vital for an understanding of your audience. For clients, the calculator interaction is recorded to the user's Yabber Tag: yabber profile and has the potential to shape the website journey by delivering content specifically crafted to the needs of that individual.

Conclusion

The LMI functionality is essential on any broker website - it's truly staggering the number of website creators that'll build a broker website and exclude such a vital component.

The LMI website plugin also includes a very basic tool to return a basic LVR calculation. Used with a simple shortcode you may simply drop the LVR Calculator into your post or page when necessary.

LVR Calculator

Pictured: The basic LVR Calculator tool. Designed to be used in posts or pages where required it simply returns an LVR with a general message indicating if LMI is required. Not unlike the LMI plugin you can style the tool and optionally stack the input fields rather than including them side-by-side.

We go on and on about how your website functionality is vital to a successful marketing campaign of any type, even if that campaign is an organic SEO strategy. Certainly, when engaging in paid promotion your website is the integrated centerpiece that'll nurture your leads into clients, and the experience you provide those looking for services has the capacity to explode your conversions. Excluding your website, or failing to optimise important funnel touch-points within your website as part of a campaign of any type, is a conversion-debilitating endeavour.

All the tools we've introduced are obviously included in our default broker website with full drag-and-drop functionality, and the client plugin includes enhanced features not made available via the free tool.

Conditions of usage aren't overly restrictive. We don't permit other marketing agencies or web designers to use the calculator or API (they should build their own tools), and we limit usage to individual small businesses. We'll disable access if we encounter any abuse. Brokerages with more than 5 employees should contact us for pricing.

Featured Image: National Bank of Australasia, Naracoorte, South Australia, 1931. The National Bank of Australasia was a bank based in Melbourne. It was established in 1858, and in 1982 merged with the Commercial Banking Company of Sydney to form National Australia Bank. [ View Image ]

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