Each week the NZ Herald and Newstalk ZB's Cooking The Books podcast tackles a different money problem. Today, it's what's happening in the home-loans market, and how to take advantage of that. Hosted by Frances Cook.

If you manage to buy your own home, you may feel like you've already won the battle.

And yes, take the time to celebrate, because that's a huge step towards securing your future.

But in reality, you're only halfway there.

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A mortgage is likely the biggest debt you'll ever take on in your life. It will take decades to pay off, and a lot of what you pay will be interest to the bank.

That's why it's always crucial to get the best deal you can. A small change in your interest rate can mean tens of thousands in extra payments, that you could have spent on something else instead.

There's been a lot of talk lately about possible increases in interest rates. It's true that at the moment debt is pretty cheap, and there are bargains to be had.

That makes me suspicious that the only way to go from here is up.

But just-released research from Canstar shows that, at least in the short term, these good rates are expected to stick around.

They've also uncovered extra tricks you can keep up your sleeves, to swing the odds even further in your favour.

I talked to Canstar research house general manager Jose George for the latest episode of Cooking the Books.

We discussed what's new for mortgages, how you can use that to your advantage, and any traps for unwary players.

For the interview, listen to the podcast.

If you have a question about this podcast, or an idea for the next one, come and talk to me about it. I'm on Facebook here, Instagram here and Twitter here.

Don't forget to subscribe on the Apple podcasts app or I Heart radio, to make sure you never miss an episode.