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Find and compare personal loans in Australia

Loan amount

$

Loan term

Credit score

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Product

Unsecured Personal Loan

Real Time Rating™

4.11

/ 5
Interest Rate

6.99

% p.a

Variable up to 18.99%

Comparison Rate*

7.91

% p.a

Variable up to 19.83%

Company
Monthly repayment

$926

36 months

Loan term

1 year to 7 years

Total repayments
Real Time Rating™

4.11

/ 5
Go to site
Total Repayments icon

Total repayments for a 3-year, $30,000 loan at 7.91% would be $33,342*. Terms from 1-7 years

special

Borrow from $5,000 to $55,000 with a 1 - 7 year flexible loan term with NAB. Plus enjoy no fees for extra repayments and no early exit fees.
Product

Unsecured Personal Loan Fixed

Real Time Rating™

4.02

/ 5
Interest Rate

6.99

% p.a

Fixed up to 18.99%

Comparison Rate*

7.91

% p.a

Fixed up to 19.83%

Company
Monthly repayment

$926

36 months

Loan term

1 year to 7 years

Total repayments
Real Time Rating™

4.02

/ 5
Go to site
Total Repayments icon

Total repayments for a 3-year, $30,000 loan at 7.91% would be $33,342*. Terms from 1-7 years

special

Borrow from $5,000 to $55,000 with a 1 - 7 year flexible loan term with NAB. Plus enjoy no fees for extra repayments and no early exit fees.

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What is a personal loan comparison?

Everyone has unique financial circumstances, credit histories and reasons for borrowing money, which means there is no one-size-fits-all personal loan that will work for everyone. 

So, if you’re on the hunt for a personal loan, it’s important to compare a range of loans and their features offered by Australian lenders, including banks and credit unions, to find the one that suits you best. Personal loan comparison may not only help you secure a loan term that you can comfortably meet, but also to make sure you’re getting the best deal possible and avoiding paying more interest and fees than you have to.

How do you make a personal loan comparison?

Before you start comparing personal loan options, it’s important to understand the different personal loan types available; that way, you can decide which one makes the most sense for your financial situation.

Here are some of the different types of personal loans you can choose from in Australia: 

  • Secured personal loan: this requires putting down an asset as collateral, which can then be repossessed and sold by the lender if you don’t meet your repayments.
  • Unsecured personal loan: opposite to above, this loan type does not require an asset as collateral.
  • Fixed interest rate personal loan: the interest rate applied to your repayments will remain the same throughout the loan term.
  • Variable interest rate personal loan: on the contrary, interest may rise and fall throughout the life of the loan in line with the market.
  • Line of credit: this personal loan functions in a similar way to a credit card. Instead of borrowing money to repay over a set period of time, you will borrow and repay money up to a maximum credit limit (note - you usually only pay interest on the funds you use).
  • Overdraft: attached to your everyday banking account, this is a set amount of money that you can withdraw once your debit funds have been exhausted.

Once you’ve selected the personal loan you want, you can compare your chosen loan option across different lenders to find the best deal. Factors to consider at this stage include interest rate, loan term, fees, features, and comparison rate (which we will detail further below). 

How do you compare personal loan rates?

When conducting a personal loan interest rates comparison, you’ll notice that the rates can vary quite a lot from one another. Factors that influence the advertised rate of interest include the loan provider, as they will charge what they deem appropriate, and the security of your personal loan (i.e. if it is secured or unsecured). Personal circumstances, including credit score and whether you have a loan guarantor, also come into play when you get a quote from a lender.

How do you choose between fixed and variable interest rate personal loans?

A fixed rate personal loan involves a set interest rate that will remain the same throughout the life of your loan. Meanwhile, a variable rate personal loan has an interest rate that may fluctuate with the market.

Whether you pick one or the other depends on if you want the exact same lump sum to come out of your bank each time you make a repayment. If you do, opting for a fixed rate loan could be a viable option. If you don’t mind the amount changing (in the hopes that it falls more often, reducing your overall repayments) then a variable interest rate could work for you; just make sure you have enough room in your budget for potential peaks in interest.

Another thing to consider here is that a variable interest rate usually has no early exit fee, which might be a better option if you are planning to pay the loan back early.

What’s the difference between secured and unsecured personal loans?

Security is the key difference between secured and unsecured personal loans. 

Secured personal loans require you to provide an asset as collateral, which means if you fail to make your repayments the lender can repossess and sell the asset to recover the loan amount. 

Unsecured personal loans, on the other hand, don’t require any asset as a security measure; because of this lack of financial security, interest is usually higher on unsecured loans. If you fail to meet your repayments under an unsecured loan, the lender may take you to court to recover the amount you borrowed.

Why should you compare personal loan fees?

Comparing fees is an important step in your search for a personal loan because you don’t want to be forking out more than you have to, to secure the same loan amount. 

The fees you incur for your personal loan will differ depending on the lender but commonly include:

  • Upfront costs (e.g. establishment fee or application fee)
  • Ongoing fees (e.g. annual fees and/or monthly fees, including service fees)
  • Late payment fees
  • Extra repayment fees
  • Early repayment fees/exit fees
  • Redraw facility fees

There may also be additional fees listed in the terms and conditions or product disclosure statement, so it's important to read these documents thoroughly to avoid being met with extra costs you weren’t aware of.

What is the comparison rate on a personal loan?

When you compare personal loan rates, a recurring term and figure that you will come across is ‘comparison rate’. This value includes the interest rate and the main fees payable, to give you a better idea of the total cost of the loan per annum. It may, therefore, help you narrow down your personal loan search according to your lending criteria (just make sure you compare the same loan amount and loan term to keep things accurate).

Something to be mindful of when it comes to comparison rates, is that if two personal loan options have the same interest rate but different comparison rates, the loan with the higher comparison rate likely has higher fees.

How do you compare personal loan features?

Each personal loan comes with a different set of features. Some may appeal to you and some may not, which is why it’s worth finding a loan with features that you can personally see yourself benefiting from—especially considering that loans with features typically come with higher rates and/or fees. 

Common personal loan features include:

  • Extra repayments: making additional repayments could help you pay off your personal loan sooner
  • Redraw facility: a redraw facility enables you to withdraw your additional repayments and put them back in your bank account, when you need some extra cash. This feature could be useful if you want to pay less interest but still want access to your money.1

How do you compare different loan terms?

A loan term is the period of time in which you're required to pay back your loan amount (inclusive of interest and fees). Generally speaking, loan terms are between one and seven years.

Your loan term can affect the total amount you end up paying for your loan. Usually, the longer the term the lower the repayments, because you’re paying back what you owe at a slower rate; however, this can often mean higher interest rates. Shorter loan terms, on the other hand, might have higher repayments but you’ll be able to pay off the loan sooner and ultimately spend less on interest.

How do you compare different loan amounts?

The amount you borrow from a lender will depend on what you're using the money for, as well as your personal financial situation. Personal loans can be used for a variety of purposes, including home renovations, funding legal costs or paying for tuition. Often, the more money you borrow, the more costly your fortnightly or monthly repayments, so only taking out how much you need is a wise move that can keep your repayments down.

Want to get an estimate of how much your personal loan repayments may be based on the maximum loan amount you’d like? Use RateCity’s personal loan calculator.

Calculate your potential personal loan repayments

Compare and save using our Personal Loan Calculator

Calculate what your repayments could be on your personal loan.

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How will my credit score affect my personal loan comparison?

Your credit score is a numerical figure that indicates your creditworthiness to lenders and, therefore, can affect the loan rate that you’re offered.

If you have an excellent credit history, lenders are more likely to lend you money. This is because you have evidence of responsible credit behaviour to back you up and are therefore deemed less of a risk to a lender. An excellent credit score could additionally unlock lower interest rates and more flexible terms, because of the reduced risk involved for the lender.

Not sure if you have a credit history? Some lenders may still be able to offer you a personal loan even if you have no credit history at all. Just be sure to do your research to ensure they hold an Australian Credit Licence and that their service and products are reputable.

How to compare personal loans at RateCity

You can compare personal loans online by using RateCity’s comparison table. Simply select your desired loan amount and loan term, and use the filters to find credit products that may be more suited to your needs. Then, narrow down your options and you’ll be on your way to securing the best personal loan for you. (Remember to check your eligibility before starting the application process for any in-store or online application.)

This article was reviewed by Personal Finance Editor Alex Ritchie before it was published as part of RateCity's Fact Check process.

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