Environmental concerns Australia’s biggest problem, pushing lenders to go green

Environmental concerns Australia’s biggest problem, pushing lenders to go green

In Roy Morgan’s Most Important Issues poll it had been found that Australians are becoming increasingly worried about the state of the environment.

According to this recent research, economic issues are now less worrying to our nation than environmental issues, for the first time since the devastating Queensland floods in February 2011.

Climate change a major factor

In addition to the research, more than 400,000 Australians have signed a petition urging the government to declare a climate emergency, reflecting serious concerns about the impacts of climate change on our “megadiverse” nation.

Source: Roy Morgan Australia

“This is the first time for over eight years Australians have thought so prominently about the environment,” said Roy Morgan CEO, Michele Levine.

“Concerns about Global warming and Climate change are the most prominent issue mentioned but there is also significant concern about the Drought and water conservation and management in the parched Murray-Darling Basin that are widely referred to as the biggest problems facing Australia.”

In the face of such concerns, lenders in the personal finance industry are turning green.

Lenders go green in support of eco-conscious spending

Whilst financial products themselves may not have a large carbon footprint, the capital they lend can end up funding projects that do.

As such, some proactive lenders are now providing green personal loans in an effort to reduce carbon emissions and encourage conscious investment in sustainable technologies.

So, if you’re looking to update your home with solar panels, energy efficient hot water systems or other clean energy products, you may want to take a closer look at the personal loans below.

Lender Product Name Advertised Rate Comparison Rate Minimum Amount Upfront Fee
Police bank Green Loan 6.49% 6.63% $1,000 $98
Community First Credit Union Green Personal Loan 5.99% 6.26% $1,000 $195
Bendigo Bank Secured Green Personal Loan 6.79% 7.21% $2,000 $150
Ratesetter Green Loan 6.81% 8.92% $2,000 from $300
Southern Cross Credit Union Green Personal Loan 7.29% 7.47% $10,000 $125
Bank first Green Personal Loan 9.00% 10.04% $10,000 $150
Bendigo Bank Unsecured Green Personal Loan 11.79% 12.84% $2,000 $150

Data accurate as at 21st November 2019. Be sure to check the PDS and any additional fees and charges with the lender before you sign on the dotted line.

woman holding soil and plant

Lenders refusing to invest in fossil fuels

If you’re not in the market for a personal loan, but you still want to ensure you’re banking sustainably, there are many lenders that refuse to provide finance to the fossil fuel industry.

As a large portion of carbon emissions are as a result of burning fossil fuels, supporting these financial institutions who have never invested in fossil fuel projects, could be a good place to start.

  • Adelaide Bank
  • Australian Defence Credit Union
  • Auswide Bank
  • Bananacoast Community Credit Union
  • Bank Australia
  • Bank First
  • Bank of us (formerly B&E)
  • BankVic
  • BDCU Alliance Bank
  • Bendigo Bank
  • Beyond Bank
  • Cape Credit Union
  • Community First Credit Union
  • Credit Union SA
  • CUA (Credit Union Australia)
  • Defence Bank
  • Delphi Bank
  • ECU
  • Firefighters Mutual Bank (formerly Fire Board (NSW) Employees Credit Union)
  • First Choice Credit Union
  • G&C Mutual Bank
  • Gateway Credit Union
  • Greater Bank
  • Goulburn Murray Credit Union
  • Health Professionals Bank
  • Heritage Bank
  • Horizon Credit Union
  • Hume Bank
  • Hunter United
  • IMB
  • Intech Credit Union
  • Laboratories Credit Union (LCU)
  • Maitland Mutual Building Society
  • Northern Beaches Credit Union
  • Maleny Credit Union (MCU)
  • Maritime, Mining & Power Credit Union
  • ME Bank
  • MyState
  • Newcastle Permanent
  • P&N Bank
  • People's Choice Credit Union
  • Police Bank
  • Police Credit Union
  • Qudos Bank
  • QBANK (Formerly Queensland Police Credit Union)
  • QT Mutual Bank
  • Queenslanders Credit Union
  • Rabobank
  • Regional Australia Bank
  • Rural Bank
  • Select Mutual Banking
  • Southern Cross Credit Union
  • South West Slopes Credit Union
  • Summerland Credit Union
  • Teachers Mutual Bank
  • Transport Mutual Credit Union
  • UniBank (formerly unicredit)

Did you find this helpful? Why not share this news?

Advertisement

RateCity
ratecity-newsletter

Money Health Newsletter

Subscribe for news, tips and expert opinions to help you make smarter financial decisions

By signing up, you agree to the RateCity Privacy Policy, Terms of Use and Disclaimer.

Advertisement

Learn more about personal loans

Where can I get a personal loan?

The Australian personal loans market contains dozens of lenders offering several hundred different products. Personal loans are available through a range of institutions, including:

There are three main ways to access personal loans. You can go through a comparison website, such as RateCity. You can use a finance broker. Or you can directly contact the lender.

Will comprehensive credit reporting change my credit score?

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.

Is it hard to improve your credit score?

It can be hard to improve your credit score, as it usually requires sacrifice and discipline, but hard doesn’t necessarily mean complicated. Some simple ways you can give your credit score a boost include closing extra credit cards, reducing your credit card limit, pay off any loans and make loan repayments on time.

As a general rule, the lower your credit score, the more remedies you can apply and the greater the scope for improvement.

Should I get a fixed or variable personal loan?

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.

Can I get a bad credit personal loan with a guarantor?

Some lenders will consider personal loan applications from a borrower with bad credit if the borrower has a family member with good credit willing to guarantee the loan (a guarantor).

If the borrower fails to pay back their personal loan, it will be their guarantor’s responsibility to cover the repayments.

What is the average interest rate on personal loans for single parents?

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.

What can I use a bad credit personal loan for?

Generally, bad credit personal loans can be used for the following purposes:

  • Debt consolidation
  • Paying bills
  • Buying vehicles
  • Moving expenses
  • Holidays
  • Weddings
  • Education

Some lenders restrict how their bad credit personal loans can be used as part of their commitment to responsible lending – be sure to check before applying.

What documentation is needed for a self-employed personal loan?

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.

Can I apply for a quick loan online?

While some lenders will require you to provide paperwork in person, many lenders will allow you to make an application for quick personal loan online. You’ll still need to provide information on your identity, income, and loan purpose in most cases.

Can I get a fast loan if I’m unemployed or on Centrelink?

Even if a lender has no credit checks, they will usually still need to confirm you can afford to repay a fast loan on your income before they’ll approve your application.

If 50% or more of your income comes from Centrelink payments, you may find it more difficult to have a fast loan application approved. Consider checking with the lender before applying to confirm if they lend to people on Centrelink.

Can I repay a $3000 personal loan early?

If you receive a financial windfall (e.g. tax refund, inheritance, bonus), using some of this money to make extra repayments onto your personal loan or medium amount loan could help reduce the total interest you’re charged on your loan, or help clear your debt ahead of schedule.

Check your loan’s terms and conditions before paying extra onto your loan, as some lenders charge fees for making extra repayments, or early exit fees for clearing your debt ahead of the agreed term.

Are there $2000 emergency loans?

If you’re having trouble being approved for a loan of less than $2000 and urgently need to purchase household essentials, there may be emergency loan options available to you.

For example, the No Interest Loans Scheme (NILS) allows low-income borrowers to take out interest-free loans of up to $1500 for essential goods and services.

For further assistance, consider contacting a financial counsellor, or calling the National Debt Helpline on 1300 007 007

What do credit scores have to do with personal loan interest rates?

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.

Are there low doc personal loans?

Self-employed borrowers may be eligible for low doc personal loans, which require less documentation in their application process than many other personal loan options.

It’s important to remember that though low doc personal loans may require less paperwork, you may need to provide additional security, or pay a higher interest rate.