Commonwealth Bank of Australia

The Commonwealth Bank is one of Australia’s big four banks and the most popular home loan lender in the country.

It offers a wide range of home loans, including mortgages for first home buyers, upgraders and investors, as well as low-doc home loans and reverse mortgages.

CBA was founded in 1912 as a government bank, before being privatised between 1991 and 1996. Today, CBA has more than 800,000 shareholders and 52,000 staff.

Pros:
  • One of the largest banks in Australia gives you access to a large branch network and over 4000 ATMs Australia-wide.
  • Outstanding online banking portal and mobile banking options.
  • Package options available.
  • Wide variety of home loan products available.
Cons:
  • Interest rates may be higher than the market average on some loans.
  • Most loans charge both significant upfront fees as well as ongoing monthly fees.
Commonwealth Bank customer service:

With Netbank one of the most well known online banking portals in the country, Commonwealth Bank makes banking with them fairly easy to do. They also offer:

  • Customer service centre (phone)
  • Mobile app
  • Online banking (Netbank)
  • Email
  • Live Chat
  • Large branch network Australia-wide
  • Dedicated home loan specialists

Commonwealth Bank home loans

How to Apply

When applying for a Commonwealth Bank home loan, some of the below documentation may be required:

  • You will need to be 18 years old or over to apply for a home loan.
  • You will need to have identity docuemnts available.
  • You will need to prove your income and savings to the bank when you apply for your loan, so you’ll need documents like payslips, tax returns and credit card receipts.

About Commonwealth Bank home loans

The Commonwealth Bank is a home loan lender that offers home loans to suit almost every type of mortgage borrower in Australia:

  • First home buyers
  • Upgraders
  • Investors
  • Refinancers
  • Renovators
  • Self-employed (low-doc loans)
  • SMSFs (superannuation home loans)
  • Seniors (reverse mortgage)

Borrowers who take out Commonwealth Bank home loans can choose from a variety of interest rate options:

  • Principal-and-interest home loans
  • Interest-only home loans
  • Variable interest rates
  • Fixed interest rates
  • Split loans

Some home loans also come with (permanent) interest rate discounts and (temporary) introductory interest rate offers.

Mortgage borrowers may also be able to earn discounts by combining a Commonwealth Bank home loan with other CBA products, such as credit cards and insurance.

Commonwealth Bank isn’t Australia’s biggest home loan lender because it offers the lowest mortgage rates or most flexible products or best customer service. Instead, it attracts customers because of its large branch network, consistent marketing and strong brand.

Commonwealth Bank home loan rates

Commonwealth Bank isn’t known for offering low interest rates or for trying to undercut its competitors. Instead, Commonwealth Bank home loan rates tend to be middle of the market - definitely not the cheapest but not the dearest either.

CBA has a range of home loan products that come with a range of different interest rates. As a general rule, owner-occupiers get lower interest rates than investors; principal-and-interest borrowers get lower interest rates than interest-only borrowers; and borrowers with lower LVRs get lower interest rates than borrowers with high LVRs.

Commonwealth Bank also puts different prices on its variable interest rates and its fixed interest rates. There are also differences within its fixed-rate mortgages, which can be for either one, two, three, four, five or seven years. As a general rule, the longer you want to fix, the higher the interest rate.

Commonwealth Bank home loans review

Many mortgage customers regard Commonwealth Bank home loans as a ‘safe’ option. Because CBA is so big and so well-known, and because everyone knows somebody who is a CBA customer, a Commonwealth Bank mortgage feels like a safe choice in a confusing mortgage market.

Commonwealth Bank has a home loan product for almost every type of mortgage borrower out there. You can use CBA for ‘vanilla’ home loans, whether you’re an owner-occupier, an investor, a refinancer or an upgrader. You can also turn to CBA for more specialist home loans, such as low-doc loans, reverse mortgages and SMSF mortgages. And no matter where in Australia you live, there’s likely to be a CBA branch close by.

But although Commonwealth Bank is a safe and convenient option, it’s not a cheap option. CommBank’s interest rates tend to range from moderately low to moderately high, as do its home loan fees.

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