14 more lenders drop home loan rates

14 more lenders drop home loan rates

HSBC, Bankwest, AMP and Bendigo Bank are among 14 lenders to cut home loan interest rates since the last RateCity.com.au update yesterday.

HSBC is not passing on the full 0.25 per cent RBA cut, instead opting to drop their variable home loan rates by 0.22 per cent. That takes HSBC’s lowest owner-occupier interest rate to 3.47 per cent, effective from Monday 17 June.

BankWest has passed on Tuesday’s RBA rate cut in full, and the lowest owner-occupier rate it offers is now 3.89 per cent, which will be available from June 25.

Keep across the changes with RateCity’s live list of who is cutting, by how much and when: https://www.ratecity.com.au/rba-cash-rate.

Here’s the list of lenders who have cut since our last update:

  • Adelaide Bank (-0.20%)
  • AMP (-0.25%)
  • Aussie (-0.25%)
  • Bank Australia (-0.25%)
  • BankWest (-0.25%)
  • Bendigo Bank (-0.20%)
  • Citi (-0.25%)
  • CUA (up to -0.25%)
  • Heritage Bank (-0.20%)
  • HSBC (-0.22%)
  • IMB (-0.25%)
  • ME Bank (-0.25%)
  • Pepper Money (-0.25%)
  • UBank (-0.25%)

The full list of lenders who have cut are:

Lender Rate change Date effective

Lowest ongoing variable rate

Comments
CBA -0.25% 25/06/2019 3.54%
Westpac -0.20% 18/06/2019 3.78% Investors on IO get -0.35%
NAB -0.25% 14/06/2019 3.54%
ANZ -0.18% 14/06/2019 3.63%
Adelaide Bank -0.20% 28/06/2019 3.67% IO customers -0.15% cut
AMP Bank -0.25% 21/06/2019 3.49% 24 June for existing customers
Athena Home Loans -0.25% 04/06/2019 3.34%
Aussie -0.25% 21/06/2019 3.69% Some changes 27 June
Auswide Bank -0.25% (up to) 06/06/2019 3.69% Only cut on one product
Bank Australia -0.25% 24/06/2019 3.44%
Bank of Melbourne -0.20% 18/06/2019 3.54%
BankSA -0.20% 18/06/2019 3.59%
BankWest -0.25% 25/06/2019 3.89%
BCU -0.25% 01/07/2019 3.54%
Bendigo Bank -0.20% 28/06/2019 3.59% IO customers -0.15% cut
BOQ -0.25% (up to) 25/06/2019 3.74% Clear Wealth customers -0.15%
Citi -0.25% 25/06/2019 4.27%
CUA -0.25% (up to) 18/06/2019 3.50% Some customers as little as 0.10%
Greater Bank -0.25% 11/06/2019 3.57%
Heritage Bank -0.20% 21/06/2019 3.57%
Homestar Finance -0.25% 04/06/2019 3.24%
HSBC -0.22% 17/06/2019 3.47%
IMB -0.25% 21/06/2019 3.54%
ING -0.25% 25/06/2019 3.34%
Macquarie Bank -0.25% 21/06/2019 3.44%
ME Bank -0.25% 27/06/2019 3.54%
Newcastle Permanent -0.25% 17/06/2019 3.47%
Pepper -0.25% 24/06/2019 3.91%
Qudos Bank -0.25% (up to) 25/06/2019 N/A
RACQ Bank -0.25% 12/06/2019 3.44%
RAMS -0.20% 18/06/2019 3.79%
Reduce Home Loans -0.25% 04/06/2019 3.19% current customers up to -0.25%
St.George Bank -0.20% 18/06/2019 3.58%
Suncorp Bank -0.20% 21/06/2019 3.49%
UBank -0.25% 28/06/2019 3.34%
Virgin Money -0.22% 25/06/2019 3.56%

Credit cards

RateCity.com.au is not expecting many credit card rates to come down as a result of Tuesday’s cut to the cash rate, although low rate credit card provider, Auswide, did cut its credit card rate to 9.20 per cent following the RBA’s cash rate decision.

RateCity.com.au research director Sally Tindall said, “most credit card customers are going to be disappointed if they expect their provider to drop its credit card rate on the back of Tuesday’s RBA cut.”

“The best way you can get a credit card rate cut, is to shop around and find one yourself.”

“If you move from the average credit card rate of around 17 per cent, to the lowest rate on the market, you could knock almost 10 percentage points off your credit card interest rate,” she said.

The average credit card rate on RateCity.com.au: 17.2%

Low rate credit cards

Lender Name Rate
G&C Mutual Bank Low Rate Visa Card 7.49%
American Express Low Rate Card 8.99%
Community First CU Low Rate card 8.99%
Easy Street Easy Low Rate 8.99%
Northern Inland CU Low Rate Visa 8.99%

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Learn more about home loans

What happens to my home loan when interest rates rise?

If you are on a variable rate home loan, every so often your rate will be subject to increases and decreases. Rate changes are determined by your lender, not the Reserve Bank of Australia, however often when the RBA changes the cash rate, a number of banks will follow suit, at least to some extent. You can use RateCity cash rate to check how the latest interest rate change affected your mortgage interest rate.

When your rate rises, you will be required to pay your bank more each month in mortgage repayments. Similarly, if your interest rate is cut, then your monthly repayments will decrease. Your lender will notify you of what your new repayments will be, although you can do the calculations yourself, and compare other home loan rates using our mortgage calculator.

There is no way of conclusively predicting when interest rates will go up or down on home loans so if you prefer a more stable approach consider opting for a fixed rate loan.

What is the difference between a fixed rate and variable rate?

A variable rate can fluctuate over the life of a loan as determined by your lender. While the rate is broadly reflective of market conditions, including the Reserve Bank’s cash rate, it is by no means the sole determining factor in your bank’s decision-making process.

A fixed rate is one which is set for a period of time, regardless of market fluctuations. Fixed rates can be as short as one year or as long as 15 years however after this time it will revert to a variable rate, unless you negotiate with your bank to enter into another fixed term agreement

Variable rates is that they are typically more flexible than their fixed rate counterparts which means that a lot of these products will let you make extra repayments and offer features such as offset accounts however fixed rates do offer customers a level of security by knowing exactly how much they need to set aside each month.

What is a variable home loan?

A variable rate home loan is one where the interest rate can and will change over the course of your loan. The rate is determined by your lender, not the Reserve Bank of Australia, so while the cash rate might go down, your bank may decide not to follow suit, although they do broadly follow market conditions. One of the upsides of variable rates is that they are typically more flexible than their fixed rate counterparts which means that a lot of these products will let you make extra repayments and offer features such as offset accounts.

How much of the RBA rate cut do lenders pass on to borrowers?

When the Reserve Bank of Australia cuts its official cash rate, there is no guarantee lenders will then pass that cut on to lenders by way of lower interest rates. 

Sometimes lenders pass on the cut in full, sometimes they partially pass on the cut, sometimes they don’t at all. When they don’t, they often defend the decision by saying they need to balance the needs of their shareholders with the needs of their borrowers. 

As the attached graph shows, more recent cuts have seen less lenders passing on the full RBA interest rate cut; the average lender was more likely to pass on about two-thirds of the 25 basis points cut to its borrowers.  image002

What is a comparison rate?

The comparison rate is a more inclusive way of comparing home loans that factors in not only on the interest rate but also the majority of upfront and ongoing charges that add to the total cost of a home loan.

The rate is calculated using an industry-wide formula based on a $150,000 loan over a 25-year period and includes things like revert rates after an introductory or fixed rate period, application fees and monthly account keeping fees.

In Australia, all lenders are required by law to publish the comparison rate alongside their advertised rate so people can compare products easily.

What is a honeymoon rate and honeymoon period?

Also known as the ‘introductory rate’ or ‘bait rate’, a honeymoon rate is a special low interest rate applied to loans for an initial period to attract more borrowers. The honeymoon period when this lower rate applies usually varies from six months to one year. The rate can be fixed, capped or variable for the first 12 months of the loan. At the end of the term, the loan reverts to the standard variable rate.

What is the difference between fixed, variable and split rates?

Fixed rate

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.

Variable rate

A variable rate home loan is one where the interest rate can and will change over the course of your loan. The rate is determined by your lender, not the Reserve Bank of Australia, so while the cash rate might go down, your bank may decide not to follow suit, although they do broadly follow market conditions. One of the upsides of variable rates is that they are typically more flexible than their fixed rate counterparts which means that a lot of these products will let you make extra repayments and offer features such as offset accounts.

Split rates home loans

A split loan lets you fix a portion of your loan, and leave the remainder on a variable rate so you get a bet each way on fixed and variable rates. A split loan is a good option for someone who wants the peace of mind that regular repayments can provide but still wants to retain some of the additional features variable loans typically provide such as an offset account. Of course, with most things in life, split loans are still a trade-off. If the variable rate goes down, for example, the lower interest rates will only apply to the section that you didn’t fix.

What is a standard variable rate (SVR)?

The standard variable rate (SVR) is the interest rate a lender applies to their standard home loan. It is a variable interest rate which is normally used as a benchmark from which they price their other variable rate home loan products.

A standard variable rate home loan typically includes most, if not all the features the lender has on offer, such as an offset account, but it often comes with a higher interest rate attached than their most ‘basic’ product on offer (usually referred to as their basic variable rate mortgage).

Does Australia have no cost refinancing?

No Cost Refinancing is an option available in the US where the lender or broker covers your switching costs, such as appraisal fees and settlement costs. Unfortunately, no cost refinancing isn’t available in Australia.

Can I change jobs while I am applying for a home loan?

Whether you’re a new borrower or you’re refinancing your home loan, many lenders require you to be in a permanent job with the same employer for at least 6 months before applying for a home loan. Different lenders have different requirements. 

If your work situation changes for any reason while you’re applying for a mortgage, this could reduce your chances of successfully completing the process. Contacting the lender as soon as you know your employment situation is changing may allow you to work something out. 

Can I get a home loan if I am on an employment contract?

Some lenders will allow you to apply for a mortgage if you are a contractor or freelancer. However, many lenders prefer you to be in a permanent, ongoing role, because a more stable income means you’re more likely to keep up with your repayments.

If you’re a contractor, freelancer, or are otherwise self-employed, it may still be possible to apply for a low-doc home loan, as these mortgages require less specific proof of income.

Will I have to pay lenders' mortgage insurance twice if I refinance?

If your deposit was less than 20 per cent of your property’s value when you took out your original loan, you may have paid lenders’ mortgage insurance (LMI) to cover the lender against the risk that you may default on your repayments. 

If you refinance to a new home loan, but still don’t have enough deposit and/or equity to provide 20 per cent security, you’ll need to pay for the lender’s LMI a second time. This could potentially add thousands or tens of thousands of dollars in upfront costs to your mortgage, so it’s important to consider whether the financial benefits of refinancing may be worth these costs.

Is there a limit to how many times I can refinance?

There is no set limit to how many times you are allowed to refinance. Some surveyed RateCity users have refinanced up to three times.

However, if you refinance several times in short succession, it could affect your credit score. Lenders assess your credit score when you apply for new loans, so if you end up with bad credit, you may not be able to refinance if and when you really need to.

Before refinancing multiple times, consider getting a copy of your credit report and ensure your credit history is in good shape for future refinances.

I have a poor credit rating. Am I still able to get a mortgage?

Some lenders still allow you to apply for a home loan if you have impaired credit. However, you may pay a slightly higher interest rate and/or higher fees. This is to help offset the higher risk that you may default on your repayments.