May 23, 2024

How finance helped revitalise a historical hospitality venue in regional NSW

A refinancing solution from NAB, facilitated by broker Fiona Wolfe has helped the owners of The Paterson Lodge transform the historical building into a charming community hub.

With its past lives including a bank, a private residence and a local inn, the property has since been transformed into an authentic, lively B&B, bar and cafe experience which offers tourists and locals the full country experience.

NAB customers Nicole Holmberg and David Trusz – the owners of the property – had a vision to create a central, community hub for locals in the town of Paterson and tourists alike, to enjoy the peaceful country lifestyle.

Situated just around the corner from the centre of town, the property has maintained its charm and vibrant character for decades. When the property went on the market in 2023, Nicole and David knew they couldn’t pass up the opportunity to revitalise the property into a valuable, community asset.

“From the moment we saw The Paterson Lodge, we could envisage the potential it had, not only from a business perspective, but from a community perspective too. After COVID, our sense of community had diminished, and we knew that The Paterson Lodge could refresh the town with added colour and soul,” says Nicole Holmberg, co-owner of The Paterson Lodge.


Turning dreams into reality

Nicole and David sought the help of Fiona Wolfe, Mortgage and Finance Broker at Anova Finance, to assess their refinancing options which soon led to the successful transaction of the property. To structure the loan for approval, Nicole’s owner-occupied property was refinanced into what is now an investment property, which then enabled Fiona to finalise the loan for The Paterson Lodge.

“Essentially, we were looking for a trustworthy professional, to guide us through our business journey. We haven’t dealt with many brokers or banks before, and so the face-to-face element was a key part of the process,” says Nicole.

A large double story red brick historical building located in NSW's Hunter region
The Paterson Lodge located in NSW’s Hunter region

“Being able to form a genuine connection with Fiona was so important because we felt like we could put all our financial needs into her hands. And even now, she’s like a friend to us,” she added.

Throughout Nicole and David’s purchase of The Paterson Lodge, Fiona had her customers’ best interests at the front of her mind, particularly when it came down to getting a deal that would provide a great outcome for their business.


“I loved working with Nicole and David because I could see how excited and passionate they were about their vision for The Paterson Lodge. It’s that passion I see in my clients everyday which makes me excited to help them achieve their financial goals,” Fiona says.

“The Paterson Lodge has an incredible charm and appeal, and I was thrilled to be a part of Nicole and David’s story.”

To facilitate the deal, Fiona initially approached another lender, however it was NAB’s credit expertise and flexibility that secured the loan approval. Having previously worked with NAB, Fiona contacted NAB Small Business Banker Trent Perman to facilitate the deal. At NAB, it’s the commitment and dedication to longstanding relationships which set the bankers apart.

“As a broker, my relationships are at the heart of my job,” Fiona says. “Having known Trent for years, I knew we could work together to achieve the best possible lending solution for Nicole and David, with the support of NAB.”


Tailored lending solutions at NAB

As a team, Trent and Fiona worked through various scenarios to identify a solution from NAB that would provide Nicole and David with a loan that would meet their serviceability requirements, whilst supporting them through the tight timeframes and pressures they experienced to finalise the purchase.

“At NAB, we strive to provide brokers and their customers with the best possible lending solutions tailored to their business needs,” Trent says.

“I love seeing people back themselves and having a go. Small businesses are the backbone of our communities, and I get so much fulfilment out of seeing small businesses succeed.”


The value of collaboration

Through continuous collaboration, NAB is committed to fostering positive partnerships with brokers, to add value to their customers’ businesses.

For Nicole and David, this has meant being able to offer the Paterson community and visitors to the town a small slice of history and a welcoming venue to visit.

“It has been heartwarming,” says Nicole. “I am so grateful for the generosity, time and support that Fiona and Trent offered us throughout this process. It was the formation of this relationship that was a highlight. Combined with the purchase of The Paterson Lodge, David and I were absolutely thrilled with the result.”



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Article first published on 10 May 2024 on The Adviser