Last updated on 13 August, 2020
2020 RateCity Personal Loan Gold Awards Winners
Finding Australia's best Personal Loans has just been made easier. Select a category below and discover the loans that have received a coveted RateCity Gold Award.
How RateCity works out the Gold Award
With more than 13 years of experience in financial product comparison, RateCity has been rating products using our world-first Real Time Ratings™ system since 2016.
RateCity’s Real Time Ratings™ is the cornerstone of our awards. The system scores every personal loan in our database out of five, based on factors such as rate, fees, features, and flexibility. Overall, more than 400 products are analysed and compared across different lenders and providers, and only the top 10 per cent are named winners.
While ongoing changes to products are often missed by other ratings and awards systems which may be calculated once or twice a year, RateCity’s Real Time Ratings™ are run every day. It’s all in the name, as the Real Time Ratings™ system has been designed to capture product changes, including rate cuts and specials, in real time. Real Time Ratings™ does not account for customer experience factors, such as loan processing times and customer service, as the data may not always be accessible across lenders.
The RateCity Gold Award winners are determined by averaging the daily Real Time Ratings™ scores over a six-month period to narrow down the most consistent top performers in each category. RateCity’s personal loan awards are issued twice a year, so you can be confident the awards are up-to-date.
We recognise that personal loan borrowers may have different needs, which is why RateCity provides three different award categories: best excellent credit personal loans, best green personal loans and best new personal loan lender.
While there are many quality personal loan products and lenders in the market, we can't give every player a prize. To assist in your decision-making, RateCity's Gold Awards are given to the top 10 per cent of personal loan products. RateCity does not charge lenders to be listed, rated, or to receive an award to ensure integrity in our awards process.
While RateCity's Gold Awards recognise consistent performers, people should look at the most current Real Time Rating™ scores on our website and consider their own personal financial needs before selecting a personal loan product.
How RateCity works out the Gold Award winners
With more than 13 years of experience in financial product comparison, RateCity’s Real Time Ratings™ system has been built on our expertise.
The cornerstone of our awards, RateCity’s Real Time Ratings™ gives every personal loan in our database a score out of five, based on factors such as rate, fees, features, and flexibility. Importantly, these ratings are run every day to capture product changes including rate cuts and specials – factors that are often missed by ratings and awards systems calculated at one or two points in time.
The RateCity Gold Award winners are then determined by averaging the daily Real Time Ratings™ scores over a six-month period to identify the most consistent top performers in each category. We recognise that there is no 'one size fits all’ personal loan, which is why we have formed three different award categories to help consumers with different needs.
There’s no doubt there are some genuinely great products and lenders in the market, but we can't give every player a prize. To help you make your decisions just that much easier, RateCity's Gold Awards highlight the best personal loan products and lenders which are working hard to help customers.
If more than half of your income comes from Centrelink benefits, it may be more difficult to have a $2000 loan application approved. Many lenders will check if you can afford a loan’s repayments on the income from your job before they’ll approve an application, and many won’t count Centrelink payments when assessing your income for this purpose.
Some lenders may offer $2000 loans to borrowers on Centrelink – consider contacting potential lenders to check before applying.
Medium amount loans can be repaid between 16 days and 2 years. Many personal loans have terms between 1 year and 5 years, though some are as short as 6 months while others last for 10 years.
Generally, the shorter a loan’s term, the more expensive your regular repayments may be, but the less total interest you’ll pay. Loans with longer terms mean more affordable repayments, but more interest charges over the full term.
Fixed personal loans keep your interest rate the same for the full loan term, while interest rates on variable personal loans may be raised or lowered during your loan term.
A fixed rate personal loan keeps your repayments consistent, which can help keep your budgeting consistent. You won't have to worry about higher repayments if your rates were to rise. However, on a fixed loan you’ll also potentially miss out on more affordable repayments if variable rates were to fall.
Like other types of personal loans, the average interest rate for personal loans for single parents changes regularly, as lenders add, remove, and vary their loan offers. The interest rate you’ll receive may depend on a range of different factors, including your loan amount, loan term, security, income, and credit score.
Personal loans may require a borrower to provide proof of identity, proof of residence, details of any other outstanding loans (including credit cards), details of assets they own (e.g. savings, car, property), and proof of income.
While borrowers in full-time or part-time employment can often provide payslips and similar documents to prove their income, self-employed borrowers may need to provide other documents, such as bank statements or tax returns, to demonstrate that their income can cover a loan’s repayments.
There is a strong link between credit scores and personal loan interest rates because many lenders use credit scores to help decide what interest rates to offer to potential borrowers.
If you have a higher credit score, lenders will probably classify you as a lower-risk borrower. That means they’ll be keen to win your business, so they may offer you a lower interest rate if you apply for a personal loan.
If you have a lower credit score, lenders will probably classify you as a higher-risk borrower. That means they might be concerned about you defaulting on the loan and costing them money. As a result, they might protect themselves by charging you a higher interest rate.
It can be more difficult for unemployed borrowers to successfully apply for a personal loan. Most lenders require borrowers to have a regular income available to cover the cost of loan repayments.
If you’re self-employed, or if less than half of your income comes from Centrelink, you may not be eligible for some personal loan options. Consider contacting the lender before applying.
Comprehensive credit reporting may change your credit score, either positively or negatively, depending on an individual's situation.
Under comprehensive credit reporting, credit providers will share more information, both positive and negative, about how you and other Australians manage credit products. That means credit reporting bureaus will be able to make a more thorough assessment of everyone’s credit behaviour. That will lead to higher scores for some consumers and lower scores for others.
It is possible for students with no available history of borrowing or managing money to get a personal loan, though it may be more difficult as well as expensive than for borrowers with a good credit history.
Having no credit history means having no credit score. While many lenders may consider having no credit score to be better than having a bad credit score, they may still consider it riskier to lend to an unknown borrower and may charge higher interest rates or fees than to borrowers with good credit scores.
Many lenders will allow you to make extra repayments onto a quick personal loan when you can afford them, or even exit the loan early, which can help reduce the total interest you are charged. Be sure to check your quick loan’s terms and conditions, as some lenders charge early exit fees for paying off a loan ahead of schedule.