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What is Debt Recycling?

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Debt recycling is a strategy that seeks to assist you in paying off your non-deductible debt (for example, your house loan) as quickly as possible while simultaneously increasing your wealth in a tax-efficient manner over the long run. In this case, the debt in your family home is replaced or “cycled” with obligations derived from tax-deductible investments. Most of the time, the interest paid on investment loans can get deducted from your taxable income. As a result, this technique has the potential to provide tax savings, which may then get used to paying off your mortgage debt faster. Furthermore, if the value of your new assets increases, you will be increasing your overall wealth simultaneously.

This technique is using the equity in your house to make investments in income-producing assets that have the potential to grow in value. Over time, the returns from these investments may be applied to your house loan, allowing you to pay it off more quickly than you would otherwise be if you were making regular payments. The aim is to expand your investment loan by the same amount you have paid off your house loan by the end of the first year and reinvest the additional funds from the larger loan. The goal is to repeat this procedure year after year until your investment loan completely replaces your mortgage.

debt recycling illustration
Debt Recycling

Certain people are not good candidates for debt recycling. Most individuals like to keep things simple, keeping their personal and professional lives separate. If you want to pay off your mortgage as soon as possible, concentrate on that. You may wish to open a new offset account with your loan split. It will assist you in avoiding any mix-up between your savings and money set aside for investing opportunities.

If you can move loan funds directly from the loan account to your brokerage account, there is no need for the offset. Some loans, however, do not have this capability, and you must first transfer the cash into a transaction account before transferring them elsewhere in the loan.

Transferring loan profits into your daily account and subsequently to your brokerage account for investment would taint that money, so avoid doing so. Maintain perfect separation between your loan split and offset monies and your principal loan and cancel the account. Don’t get your cash mixed up!

There is no outstanding loan available for debt consolidation. You will require the ability to generate splits and redraw, which many people already possess. An offset account may be beneficial. Many home loans can be broken down into smaller installments. Inquire with your financial institution to see whether it is possible. Consider how common it is to split a loan between fixed and variable interest rates — it’s essentially the same scenario as above. In addition, you are not required to finish up with ten little split loans. You can request that your primary home loan limit be reduced and increase your investment loan limit. It helps to keep things more organized, but it is dependent on how accommodating the lender is!

Debt recycling vs. debt consolidation

Although debt consolidation and debt recycling are both financial solutions for reducing personal debt loads, they operate in quite different ways. Credit card debt consolidation is a strategy in which you consolidate several credit card bills into a single consolidation loan. This new loan consolidates your previous obligations into a single monthly payment at a one interest rate. It is possible to gain psychological advantages from debt consolidation since it removes the stress of handling various debt payments each month. A debt consolidation loan may also result in a lower total monthly fee or a lower average interest rate on your debt if the loan terms are suitable.

A debt consolidation loan might be secured or unsecured depending on the circumstances. Secured debt consolidation loans necessitate the use of one or more assets as collateral to be approved. Debt recycling is not appropriate for some people in other situations. In a nutshell, debt recycling is turning your existing bad debt into good debt. While it may appear as though you are simply swapping one loan for another, debt recycling can have several advantages for those who earn a high income and would otherwise end up paying more in taxes than they should have to do. 

property and off set accounts
Put your money into good quality debt

On the other hand, debt recycling is not a method suitable for everyone. As a result of this strategy, you will likely wind up with two loans, both of which will most likely be secured by your primary house, and you may not be comfortable with the degree of risk associated with debt recycling. While employing a technique such as debt recycling can assist you in maximizing the benefits of investing and building your wealth in a more timely and efficient manner, it also increases the dangers you may face in a market downturn.

If the money is used to purchase an investment or refinance a loan that got previously used to buy an investment, the interest paid on the loan is tax-deductible. If the funds are being transferred from the loan’s initial drawdown to the purchase or refinance, it’s critical to ensure they don’t get mixed up with the money on which the interest is not deductible. As a result, borrowed monies should never be deposited in an offset account before being used for investment purposes. You should also maintain a separate loan account (or split) for the amount of your portfolio that is intended for investment. It may be a good moment to assess your house loan to ensure that it is still appropriate for you and your debt recycling activities in the future.

Advantages of debt recycling

Debt recycling is a long-term approach, so don’t expect to see large sums of money quickly. As you’re utilizing the equity in your home, it is essential that you bare the risks associated with increasing your loan amount. It is advisable that you should be prepared to deal with short-term changes, market volatility, and other hazards involved with the debt recycling strategy. To devise a debt-recycling plan, you need to consult your financial adviser. Before you begin, keep in mind that you will want a consistent source of income to assist you in covering the interest payments. Income protection insurance may be an intelligent choice in certain situations.

Suppose your circumstances are favorable and you manage your debt recycling properly. In that case, debt recycling may be an efficient method of paying off your mortgage more quickly while simultaneously increasing your wealth and lowering your tax burden. Some advantages of debt recycling include:

· The strategy allows you to pay off your house loan early. In the best-case scenario, you might be able to acquire a sizable investment portfolio whilst lowering your tax liability.

· Essentially, you convert your loan interest from a non-deductible to a tax-deductible expense. Interest on a home loan is not tax-deductible (unless it is a loan secured by an investment property), whereas interest on an investment loan is often tax-deductible.

· Instead of waiting until you have paid off your mortgage, you accumulate growing assets while working down your debt.

· Lastly, as you can pay off your house more quickly this means you can lower the interest you pay on your home loan.

piggy bank savings
At the end of the day save more than you spend

Disadvantages of debt recycling

If you are uncomfortable with being in debt, you will likely be unable to implement this plan. By treating your house loan as a financial investment, you expose yourself to the possibility of loss. The first advantage of borrowing against your house is that it will be utilized as collateral in a disaster. For example, if the value of your home declines significantly or interest rates rise, you may find yourself in a precarious financial situation. Similarly, if the stock market plummets, you might lose everything. It does not matter what form of investment you make; you must first choose the degree of risk you are ready to tolerate.

As a result, debt recycling is considered a high-risk strategy because you utilize borrowed money to invest and your own house as collateral to guarantee that investment. The failure of your investment or the rise in interest rates might cause you to experience severe financial difficulties or perhaps put your family’s house in jeopardy. As always check with your Financial Adviser to see if this strategy is appropriate for your financial needs before proceeding. The following points should get taken into consideration:

· It takes strength of character and discipline to use your investment income and tax savings to pay down your home loan each year, rather than spending them on a ‘want’ such as a vacation or a new car.

· Assets purchased with borrowed monies may see a decline in value. Even if you earn tax deductions from your investment over time, the value of your asset may decline, and you may still be in debt even if you sell the item at a later date.

· If your loan’s interest rate is not set, a rise in interest rates may increase your loan repayments. It might further strain your cash flow, which can get compounded if the income generated by your assets is lower than anticipated.

· When the stock market is booming, borrowing money to invest might increase profits. On the other hand, during periods of market decline, your losses would be more significant because you will still be required to pay interest and return the loan.

financial discipline and savings illustration
It takes financial discipline to build strong investment portfolios

Other important things to consider

Wealth creation begins now rather than in the future because you may have expected to start investing only after paying your mortgage. You freed up the funds from your paycheck to cover your home-loan obligations. It allows you to take advantage of excellent investment opportunities instantly and ensures that your money is not solely concentrated in your house, as is the case with many people. It implies that you may be able to achieve your lifestyle and financial objectives sooner, and you may be able to retire earlier as a result.

Other methods of debt recycling include using the interest-free period on your credit card to extend the amount of time your paycheck is sitting in interest-bearing accounts. Whenever possible, use your credit card to pay for anything from bills to large purchases, and be sure to pay it off before your bank begins collecting interest. With this method, you’ll maximize your interest earnings while also managing benefit program points if you’re eligible.

If you are investing while still owing money on your house loan, you will often be better off using the cash to pay down your home loan and invest the funds withdrawn from your home loan rather than using the funds to support. Debt recycling can be accomplished by using principal and interest or interest-only loans. The principle and interest loan you are using for your primary residence are most likely what you are using for this. 

Regarding debt recycling, interest-only loans are more successful than traditional loans. As a result, your monthly payments will be reduced, and you will be able to redirect more funds toward paying off your non-deductible mortgage even more quickly. Moving a portion of your loan to interest-only repayment may necessitate a new appraisal of your borrowing ability in today’s market. In addition, you could take out a house loan with a line of credit, but the interest rates on them are much less attractive.


Related Post: All you need to know about Asset Allocation and why you must pay attention to it.


To Sum It Up

Debt recycling is repurposing an existing debt to invest the proceeds. You may refinance your house loan into an interest-only debt instrument, the interest on which is tax-deductible, and then utilize the funds to make other investments. You aren’t earning any additional income from your home equity, so it would be preferable to use it geared or borrowed against for investment through an interest-tax-deductible loan rather than letting it sit there collecting dust.

The money may purchase any investment vehicle, including real estate or stock options. You’ll be required to pay interest on the investment loan, and any revenues generated by your investments can be used to help pay down your mortgage. It is the recycling component of the procedure, and it assists you in putting your money to work more efficiently than before.

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I am passionate about helping individuals create wealth through property investments. I am the co-founder, mentor and financial writer at WatuDaily, specialising in property investment, business advice and personal money matters. I was previously a financial adviser for over 15 years and it is on that high that I wish to share my knowledge and experiences and channel them towards a vision and purpose of helping others to realise and achieve their financial goals through my publications. As a financial adviser, I won a number of industry awards for the outstanding contribution I made to my clients and peers. I hold a Bachelor of Applied Finance degree and a Master of Commerce in Accounting and Finance degree. In my spare time, I enjoy travelling and staying active through playing sport.