Discover huge savings - up to $39,000
When you switch your big bank home loan
Switch & Save Sale
Australia's Biggest Home Loan Sale
Switch & Save help desk
What is the Switch & Save Sale?
The Switch & Save Sale is Australia’s first industry home loan sale.
For 40 hours only, Australian mortgage holders will have exclusive access to discounted rates, waived fees and cashback offers if they switch their loan to a different lender.
If you have a mortgage with one of the big banks, you could save up to $39,000* by switching lenders.
The sale runs from 6am Monday 8 May to 10pm Tuesday 9 May (AEST), with pre-registrations opening on 30 April 2017.
If you’ve ever thought about refinancing your home loan but put it in the ‘too hard basket’, then now could be the ideal time to reconsider, especially with interest rates now on the rise and the cost of housing continuing to squeeze budgets.
It takes less than 60 seconds to be on your way to potentially unlock up to $39,000* in savings.
Why do I need to enter my contact details?
We will need to pass your details on to the lender so they can contact you about submitting your application. We may also use your information to keep you up to date on future RateCity initiatives and news, if you select this option. You can opt out at any time.
Are you offering any fixed rates?
Most of the products in the sale are variable rate products however there are a small number of fixed rate products in the sale.
Can I go back to view loans from a different device (e.g. my phone) or at another time without having to enter details in again?
You must go through the registration wizard again if you want to view another time or on another device. This should take less than a minute.
Am I guaranteed to be approved for all the loans I’m shown?
No. While we will do our best to show a list of loans for you, it is up to the lender to approve or disapprove your loan based on your individual circumstances, after you have submitted all your paperwork. This can sometimes take up to 30 days or more, so it is important to find out exactly what the criteria is for the loan, and what you need in terms of paperwork. Don’t forget to submit it within 30 days to be eligible for the sale offer attached to that loan.
Should I pick the loan that has the lowest rate?
We are unable to give advice or make any recommendations on what product to pick.
While the interest rate is important when selecting an affordable loan and keeping your mortgage costs to a minimum, there are other factors you may consider before refinancing your loan, such as:
- whether you need an offset account
- fixed vs variable rate
- level of customer service from the lender
- what all the fees are
A good way to assess this is to write down all the features you want in a home loan in order of priority. That way you have a checklist to go through when assessing each loan. Seek advice if you are unsure.
I am looking to buy my first home – can I access the sale?
Is the sale just for home loans? What about personal/car loans and credit cards?
How does it work?
For 40 hours – from 6am, 8 May to 10pm, 9 May (AEST) – a selection of home loan products from eight participating lenders will be available, with competitive low rates in addition to rate reductions, fee waivers and cashback offers.
Answer a few quick questions, such as your current interest rate and the size of your monthly repayments, and in under 60 seconds you’ll have access to some great home loan offers.
Once you’ve selected an offer that interests you, you can contact the lender with just a click. The lender soon be in touch to guide you through the refinancing process.
At this point, there’s still no obligation to switch – you’ve got 30 days to think it over and submit your application to the lender.
Who are the lenders?
All the lenders participating in the Switch & Save Sale are regulated by either the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) or the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).
Community First is a credit union that was established in 1959. It offers home loans, car loans, personal loans, term deposits, savings accounts, insurance and credit cards. Over the years, it has featured in Money magazine’s Best of the Best awards and the Australian Financial Review’s Smart Investor Blue Ribbon Awards.
HSBC has had banking operations in Australia since 1986. It offers home loans, personal loans, savings accounts, credit cards, insurance and financial planning. HSBC is one of the world’s biggest banking groups, with more than 37 million customers in 70 countries.
IMB Bank was founded in 1880. It offers a full range of banking solutions including home and personal lending, savings and transaction accounts, term deposits, business banking and financial planning, and can organise a range of insurance and travel products. IMB has branches in Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra and regional NSW.
ING Direct is the Australian arm of European banking giant ING Group and has operated in Australia since 1999. Its products include home loans, commercial loans, savings accounts, superannuation and insurance. ING Direct was named Australian Financial Institution of the Year – Non Big 4 at the 2016 RFi Australian Retail Banking Awards.
Loans.com.au is an online-only non-bank lender that was founded in 2011. It regularly offers some of Australia’s cheapest mortgage rates. Loans.com.au took out the Best Property Investment Loan category in 2015 at the Australian Financial Review’s Smart Investor Blue Ribbon Awards.
Mortgage House is a non-bank lender that was founded in 1986. It offers home loans, personal loans and business loans. Mortgage House won Your Mortgage magazine’s award for Best Introductory Loan Non-bank in 2011 and the Australian Mortgage Awards’ award for Best Low-doc Loan Non-bank in 2010.
Reduce Home Loans is a non-bank lender that was founded in 2010. It operates mainly online and regularly offers some of Australia’s cheapest mortgage rates. Reduce Home Loans was awarded Best of the Best Cheapest Home Loan in 2016 and 2017 by Money magazine.
State Custodians is a non-bank lender that was founded in 2007. Money magazine named State Custodians its Non-bank Lender of the Year from 2011 to 2015. State Custodians also won the award for Cheapest Line of Credit Loan Non-bank in 2016, as well as Best Line of Credit Loan Non-bank from 2013 to 2015.
You’ve estimated the average person can save up to $39K*, how have you calculated this?
If you have a loan with one of the Big 4 Banks (CBA, Westpac, ANZ and NAB) then you could save up to $39,000* over 15 years by switching. In fact, this is a conservative calculation.
What we’ve done is work out how much you could save if you switched an average-sized mortgage from the average discounted variable rate offered by one of the Big 4 Banks to the lowest variable rate in our sale. We’ve then factored in the discharge fees, application fees and ongoing fees to work out the savings over a 15-year loan term. For more information, see our Assumptions.
Remember that this is a model calculation only and not a prediction. The results are only estimates, whereas the actual amounts may be higher or lower. We cannot predict factors that will affect these results, such as changes in interest rates.
Is switching simple? Why should I refinance?
Refinancing is when you change your home loan from one loan to another – provided either by the same lender or by switching to a different lender. When you refinance, you are technically paying out your old home loan early and starting up a new one.
Switching lenders is often much simpler than many Australians believe, and can make a significant difference to the finances and lifestyles of many home owners.
To help make comparing different home loan offers simpler, RateCity will compare your financial profile to the offers in the Switch & Save Sale, and filter out the loans that aren’t suitable for you, e.g. investor loans if you’re an owner-occupier. We’ll also calculate the potential savings of each loan compared to your current mortgage, and summarise the benefits offered by each lender so you can make a more informed decision.
Here’s how the refinancing process works at the Switch & Save Sale:
- Proceed through the Switch & Save Sale wizard, and enter your home loan details and contact details
- Select a loan out of the ones on sale
- The lender will contact you to help you to answer any questions and help with the application process
- Complete your application within 30 days of the event finishing if you decide to proceed
- Have your property valued by the lender
- Await approval
Depending on your lender, this process could take as little as 3 days or as long as 30 days.
If you choose to proceed with an application to refinance, this usually requires some paperwork, such as confirmation of your identity, your income, your residence and any other debts. Once you’ve selected one or more home loan offers from the options at the Switch & Save Sale, the lender(s) will soon be in touch to guide you through their application process and provide assistance if required.
There are several potential benefits to refinancing your home loan, which won’t always apply to every borrower. These benefits include:
- Saving money by moving to a lower interest rate – Moving to a lower interest rate can potentially save you thousands. Of course, you need to make sure your new loan has all the functions you need, and that you are happy with the service your new lender provides.
- Paying off your home loan faster – If you refinance onto a lower interest rate but keep making the same monthly repayments, you can pay off your loan faster, and save additional money by doing so. The longer it takes you to pay off your loan, the more you will pay your lender in interest.
- Find a home loan that suits your changing needs – A typical home loan lasts for 30 years, and a lot can happen over that time. When you switch to a new lender, it’s worth considering whether these features are important to you:
- Extra repayments
- Redraw facility
- Offset Account
- Interest only payments
- Call centre/branch support
Do I have to make a decision in 40 hours?
No. Refinancing your home loan is likely to save you a lot of money, but it is a big financial decision. You just need to select the product(s) you are interested in during the 40-hour sale. After this time, you’ll have 30 days to decide and submit your application.
The offers each lender has put on the table are genuine – they can only afford to keep them live for a limited period of time.
Is there a limit to how many people can refinance in the sale?
Some loan products are limited, so it’s best to select your preferred choices at the start of the sale.
Are these deals exclusive to the RateCity Switch & Save Sale?
Yes. These deals have been created by the lenders specifically for the RateCity sale, and are not available elsewhere. That said, lenders sometimes run special offers at other times which might be similar.
How do you determine which products I am shown?
When you sign up to the Switch & Save Sale, you’ll supply some basic information about your current loan including:
- the amount owing on your mortgage
- the value of your property
- your current interest rate
- your monthly repayments
- name of existing lender
If any loan is unsuitable based on this criteria, we will remove these loans from the list.
How have you calculated the savings?
The calculations are a model only, and not a prediction. The results are only estimates, whereas the actual amounts may be higher or lower. We cannot predict things that will affect these results such as changes in interest rates and their differentials.
We used your data and compared against the loans that we have on sale.
To do your own independent calculations we recommend using the ASIC mortgage switching calculator. This calculator is provided by the Australian Government.
The fine print – what is the eligibility criteria for the sale?
The sale is only available to people wanting to refinance – you must already have a home loan. Additionally, customers cannot take up an offer from their existing lender, i.e. if you are currently with ING, then you can’t refinance to an ING product in the sale.
Each lender will also have its own set of eligibility criteria, so check the terms and conditions carefully. For example, some lenders won’t cater for people who are self-employed, while specific products might require a loan-to-value ratio (LVR) of 80% or less.
It’s important to check all requirements, terms and conditions with the lender.
Why do I need to enter my current mortgage information?
By entering your current mortgage details, we can calculate potential savings for you if you were to change lenders, and also help filter the loans for you.
For example – if you live in the house you own, we’ll make sure we show you the owner-occupier rates, which are typically cheaper than investor rates. Or if you have less than 20% equity in your property, then we won’t show you the deals that require a greater amount of equity.
What are the costs involved in refinancing?
Switching lenders usually includes some costs, such as a discharge fee from your existing lender and upfront fees from your new lender, including application fees, settlement fees, legal fees and valuation fees.
When assessing a potential loan, it is good to work out your break-even point – i.e. the time it will take to recover the costs of switching.
Your new lender will disclose all fees and costs to switch to them.
I am interested in a loan that isn’t in the sale but is from one of the lenders on sale – can I get the cashback/fee waiver?
No. Unfortunately the sale offers are limited to the products on sale only.
Are there any risks with changing to a smaller lender?
A smaller lender is almost any institution outside of the big four banks (ANZ, CBA, NAB and Westpac). These include credit unions and building societies and ‘non-bank’ lenders. These lenders must follow the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009, which ensures the lender properly assesses whether a potential customer can realistically repay a loan, and that a specific standard if information is made accessible to potential customers.
They are regulated by the same bodies as the big four banks and many of them have been around for a very long time. The National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009, and the regulatory framework under which financial institutions work are all in place to minimise any risk to consumers.
All participating lenders in the Sale have been in business for over 5 years, and actively lending to thousands of Australian home owners.
What happens if I don’t know my monthly repayments?
Your repayments should appear on your bank statements or your internet banking. Some people make weekly or fortnightly repayments so if that’s you, make sure you convert them to monthly calculations.
Do I need to have a good credit score to refinance?
RateCity cannot determine this, as we are not privy to the different credit policies of each lender. Please seek advice or speak to a lender directly.
How do I determine the value of my property?
Here we are asking you to estimate only. It’s often hard to get an accurate estimate of your property value. Some real estate websites such as Domain, Realestate.com.au and Onthehouse will give you an estimate, however be aware that a bank valuer might assume a lower estimate, so it can be a good idea to make your estimate slightly lower.
If you do apply for refinance, the lender might send a valuer out to your home, so it is worth being prudent.
Can I select more than one home loan offer?
Yes. You can select a few different offers and compare. Just remember you have 30 days to get more information, decide on one and submit your application.
I’ve selected a product that is offering a discounted variable rate. What if the lender puts up the rate?
Lenders are likely to put variable rates up and down several times throughout the life of a loan. However, the discount provided as part of the sale should remain for the life of your loan. For example – if you are on a rate of 3.95% which includes a discount of 0.10% and your lender puts up their variable rate to 4.25% then you will be on 4.15%.
Unlike the low introductory “honeymoon rates” used by some lenders to attract new customers, the discounted rates at the Switch & Save Sale should not expire while you continue to hold that loan with them, unless you change products or refinance.
You must check this and confirm with the lender/product you are interested in.
I want to refinance but I’m on a fixed rate. Can I?
People on a fixed rate can apply for a variable rate, however your current lender is likely to charge a hefty break free for terminating your fixed rate early, which might not make it cost-effective for you to switch. It is best to work out what these break fees are first so you know what costs you are in for. Seek advice.