While being self-employed has its advantages, it can make applying for a standard home loan more complicated.

Without access to regular payslips or salary documentation, low-doc home loans give freelancers, contract workers, investors and self-employed borrowers the option of applying for a home loan with less documentation than standard home loans.

Find and compare low doc home loans

Sort By
Product
Advertised Rate
Comparison Rate*
Company
Monthly Repayment
Features
Real Time Rating™
Go to site

2.85%

Variable

3.05%

Pepper

$1.4k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 65%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.59

/ 5
More details

2.85%

Variable

3.05%

Pepper

$1.4k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 70%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.59

/ 5
More details

2.99%

Variable

3.19%

Pepper

$1.4k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 75%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.27

/ 5
More details

3.09%

Variable

3.29%

Pepper

$1.4k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 80%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.35%

Variable

3.55%

Pepper

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 70%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.35%

Variable

3.55%

Pepper

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 65%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.35%

Variable

3.55%

Pepper

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 70%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.35%

Variable

3.55%

Pepper

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 65%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.60%

Variable

3.66%

RESI Mortgage Corp

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 60%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.60%

Variable

3.66%

Yellow Brick Road

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 60%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.60%

Variable

3.66%

Yellow Brick Road

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 60%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

1.95

/ 5
More details

3.49%

Variable

3.69%

Pepper

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 75%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.49%

Variable

3.69%

Pepper

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 75%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.59%

Variable

3.79%

Pepper

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 80%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.59%

Variable

3.79%

Pepper

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 80%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.69%

Variable

3.88%

Pepper

$1.5k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 90%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

3.97%

Variable

4.01%

Resimac

$1.6k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 70%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

1.78

/ 5
More details

4.12%

Variable

4.06%

Resimac

$1k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 70%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

1.78

/ 5
More details

3.89%

Variable

4.08%

Pepper

$1.6k

Redraw facility
Offset Account
Borrow up to 85%
Extra Repayments
Interest Only
Owner Occupied

2.03

/ 5
More details

What is a low-doc home loan?

Low-doc home loans get their name from providing low documentation. For borrowers who are self-employed, those who freelance or own their own small business, getting access to payslips and group certificates can be challenging. The lack of traditional documentation can make applying for a standard mortgage a little trickier. That’s where a low-doc home loan comes in, giving non-traditional borrowers access to home loans minus the usual documentation.

Low-doc home loans are generally designed for self-employed borrowers who have the deposit and income to be able to pay off a mortgage but may not have all the standard documentation to prove it.

Back in the 1990s, mortgage brokers recognised that not all lenders fit into one category. Discovering a valuable niche in self-employed lending, they tapped into this group of viable borrowers and created a new category of home loans called low-doc home loans.

Until low-doc home loans came along, getting access to a mortgage was difficult for non-traditional borrowers. What low-doc loans do is provide self-employed, freelancers and small business owners with the ability to provide different kinds of proof of income documentation when applying for a home loan.

With the number of self-employed borrowers on the rise, the increasing demand for low-doc home loans means there are a lot more options available for non-traditional borrowers. With low-doc home loans now available from all sorts of lenders, it’s important to compare your options and find the best low-doc home loan for you.

As self-employed borrowers generally don’t look as solid on paper as more traditional employees with pay slips, banks and lenders offering low-doc home loans will often insist borrowers pay a larger deposit, and some low-doc home loans may have higher interest rates than traditional loans. Having an excellent credit history can help to maximise your available options.

While each low-doc home loan lender will have their own rules and conditions, self-employed borrowers will generally have to provide at least two years of personal tax returns, business activity statements (BAS), profit and loss statements, other relevant financial statements and in some cases an accountant’s letter verifying their financial position.

How to compare low-doc home loans

Low-doc home loans have come a long way in recent years. With many options on the market, there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all low-doc home loan. Some lenders may offer specific low-doc home loans, while others may offer a low-doc version of a regular home loan. With so many options on the market, it can be hard to know how to compare low-doc home loans. Here’s what to look out for when comparing low-doc home loans.

Interest rate

Start by looking at the interest rate. Depending on the low-doc home loan, you may have the option of choosing either fixed or variable interest rates. A fixed-rate option will allow you to set the interest rate for a period. While the fixed interest rate is usually higher than a variable rate, it will give you the certainty of making set repayments for a fixed period. Your other option is to pick the variable rate and wear the risk that rates may rise, which will make your repayments more expensive. Some low-doc home loans offer a split rate option which lets you split part of your loan between both a fixed and a variable interest rate.

Loan type

When you apply for a home loan, you’ll need to pay back both the principal amount you borrow and the interest. Some low-doc loans may offer an interest-only option, which lets you pay back the minimum amount of interest and not the principle for a fixed period.

Loan features

When comparing low-doc home loans, it’s important to look beyond the interest rate. The interest rate is an important factor to consider and compare, but there are many other aspects to weigh up.

Extra repayments

You might want a loan that allows you to make extra repayments. If you’re self-employed or freelancing, there may be periods of time when you’re earning more. In those periods, you may want to use the extra cash to pay down your home loan. A loan that allows you to make additional repayments will let you pay extra into your home loan which will ultimately reduce the amount of interest you pay over the life of the loan. Bear in mind that some loans that offer this feature may charge a small fee for it.

Redraw facility

If your cash flow is unstable or varies throughout the year, a loan which offers a redraw feature may help buffer any ebbs and flows. A redraw facility allows you to withdraw any additional repayments you’ve made into your home loan. While the money is there to be redrawn, remember that you’ll still have to pay it back and it may push your repayment amounts up. As low-doc home loans generally tend to have lower interest rates than credit cards and personal loans, it can make more financial sense to use the redraw facility than applying for a personal loan.

Offset account

If you’ve got savings or any extra cash sitting in a savings account, you might want a low-doc home loan with an offset account. An offset account that’s attached to your home loan may help save you interest and potentially shave years off your loan. For example, if you’ve got a $500,000 home loan and a balance of $40,000 in an offset account, you’ll only be charged interest on the balance of $460,000. The amount in your offset account is offset against the loan balance, potentially saving you interest and money over the life of the loan.

Generally speaking, offset accounts are usually only available with variable interest rate low-doc home loans, so before you apply, do your research to find a loan that suits your needs.

Other features to consider

Given that low-doc home loans are generally riskier from a lender’s perspective, the bank may require a bigger deposit than a full-doc home loan. When you’re comparing low-doc home loans, look out for the loan-to-value ratio (LVR) percentages. As a general rule, loans that have a LVR of over 80 per cent are required to pay lender’s mortgage insurance (LMI). To avoid any extra charges, take note of the LVR and deposit requirements.

Other low-doc home loan features to look out for include loan portability which lets you take your low-doc home loan with you when you move, instead of refinancing

Depending on your cash flow, you may be able to find a loan that lets you change your repayments from monthly to weekly or fortnightly.

How do I apply for a low-doc home loan in Australia?

Once you’ve compared your low-doc home loan options, found a loan that suits you, and checked that you meet the eligibility requirements, you will need to gather your documentation before you apply. While each lender has their own home loan application process, they may generally require some or all of the following documentation:

  • Proof of identification
  • Proof you’ve been working in the same industry for at least 12 months
  • A registered business name and an ABN
  • At least 12 months of lodged business activity statements (BAS statements)
  • Proof of registration of GST
  • Personal and business bank statementsAn income declaration from your accountant

Frequently asked questions

Who has the best home loan?

Determining who has the ‘best’ home loan really does depend on your own personal circumstances and requirements. It may be tempting to judge a loan merely on the interest rate but there can be added value in the extras on offer, such as offset and redraw facilities, that aren’t available with all low rate loans.

To determine which loan is the best for you, think about whether you would prefer the consistency of a fixed loan or the flexibility and potential benefits of a variable loan. Then determine which features will be necessary throughout the life of your loan. Thirdly, consider how much you are willing to pay in fees for the loan you want. Once you find the perfect combination of these three elements you are on your way to determining the best loan for you. 

How do I take out a low-deposit home loan?

If you want to take out a low-deposit home loan, it might be a good idea to consult a mortgage broker who can give you professional financial advice and organise the mortgage for you.

Another way to take out a low-deposit home loan is to do your own research with a comparison website like RateCity. Once you’ve identified your preferred mortgage, you can apply through RateCity or go direct to the lender.

Mortgage Calculator, Interest Rate

The percentage of the loan amount you will be charged by your lender to borrow. 

Does Real Time Ratings' work for people who already have a home loan?

Yes. If you already have a mortgage you can use Real Time RatingsTM to compare your loan against the rest of the market. And if your rate changes, you can come back and check whether your loan is still competitive. If it isn’t, you’ll get the ammunition you need to negotiate a rate cut with your lender, or the resources to help you switch to a better lender.

What is a specialist lender?

Specialist lenders, also known as non-conforming lenders, are lenders that offer mortgages to ‘non-vanilla’ borrowers who struggle to get finance at mainstream banks.

That includes people with bad credit, as well as borrowers who are self-employed, in casual employment or are new to Australia.

Specialist lenders take a much more flexible approach to assessing mortgage applications than mainstream banks.

Mortgage Calculator, Repayments

The money you pay back to your lender at regular intervals. 

How will Real Time Ratings help me find a new home loan?

The home loan market is complex. With almost 4,000 different loans on offer, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to work out which loans work for you.

That’s where Real Time RatingsTM can help. Our system automatically filters out loans that don’t fit your requirements and ranks the remaining loans based on your individual loan requirements and preferences.

Best of all, the ratings are calculated in real time so you know you’re getting the most current information.

What do mortgage brokers do?

Mortgage brokers are finance professionals who help borrowers organise home loans with lenders. As such, they act as middlemen between borrowers and lenders.

While bank staff recommend home loan products only from their own employer, brokers are independent, so they can recommend products from a range of institutions.

Brokers need to be accredited with a particular lender to be able to work with that lender. A typical broker will be accredited with anywhere from 10 to 30 lenders – the big four banks, as well as a range of smaller banks, credit unions and non-bank lenders.

As a general rule, brokers don’t charge consumers for their services; instead, they receive commissions from lenders whenever they place a borrower with that institution.

How does a redraw facility work?

A redraw facility attached to your loan allows you to borrow back any additional repayments that you have already paid on your loan. This can be a beneficial feature because, by paying down the principal with additional repayments, you will be charged less interest. However you will still be able to access the extra money when needed.

What is the flexibility score?

Today’s home loans often try to lure borrowers with a range of flexible features, including offset accounts, redraw facilities, repayment frequency options, repayment holidays, split loan options and portability. Real Time Ratings™ weights each of these features based on popularity and gives loans a ‘flexibility score’ based on how much they cater to borrowers’ needs over time. The aim is to give a higher score to loans which give borrowers more features and options.

How common are low-deposit home loans?

Low-deposit home loans aren’t as common as they once were, because they’re regarded as relatively risky and the banking regulator (APRA) is trying to reduce risk from the mortgage market.

However, if you do your research, you’ll find there is still a fairly wide selection of banks, credit unions and non-bank lenders that offers low-deposit home loans.

Mortgage Calculator, Deposit

The proportion you have already saved to go towards your home. 

What is a fixed home loan?

A fixed rate home loan is a loan where the interest rate is set for a certain amount of time, usually between one and 15 years. The advantage of a fixed rate is that you know exactly how much your repayments will be for the duration of the fixed term. There are some disadvantages to fixing that you need to be aware of. Some products won’t let you make extra repayments, or offer tools such as an offset account to help you reduce your interest, while others will charge a significant break fee if you decide to terminate the loan before the fixed period finishes.

Mortgage Calculator, Loan Term

How long you wish to take to pay off your loan. 

What is a redraw fee?

Redraw fees are charged by your lender when you want to take money you have already paid into your mortgage back out. Typically, banks will only allow you to take money out of your loan if you have a redraw facility attached to your loan, and the money you are taking out is part of any additional repayments you’ve made. The average redraw fee is around $19 however there are plenty of lenders who include a number of fee-free redraws a year. Tip: Negative-gearers beware – any money redrawn is often treated as new borrowing for tax purposes, so there may be limits on how you can use it if you want to maximise your tax deduction.

Mortgage Calculator, Property Value

An estimate of how much your desired property is worth. 

Who offers 40 year mortgages?

Home loans spanning 40 years are offered by select lenders, though the loan period is much longer than a standard 30-year home loan. You're more likely to find a maximum of 35 years, such as is the case with Teacher’s Mutual Bank

Currently, 40 year home loan lenders in Australia include AlphaBeta Money, BCU, G&C Mutual Bank, Pepper, and Sydney Mutual Bank.

Even though these lengthier loans 35 to 40 year loans do exist on the market, they are not overwhelmingly popular, as the extra interest you pay compared to a 30-year loan can be over $100,000 or more.

What is the ratings scale?

The ratings are between 0 and 5, shown to one decimal point, with 5.0 as the best. The ratings should be used as an easy guide rather than the only thing you consider. For example, a product with a rating of 4.7 may or may not be better suited to your needs than one with a rating of 4.5, but both are probably much better than one with a rating of 1.2.

Mortgage Calculator, Repayment Type

Will you pay off the amount you borrowed + interest or just the interest for a period?

Do other comparison sites offer the same service?

Real Time RatingsTM is the only online system that ranks the home loan market based on your personal borrowing preferences. Until now, home loans have been rated based on outdated data. Our system is unique because it reacts to changes as soon as we update our database.