Home Loans

Competitive home loan rates for first home buyers, refinance or investment

Compare home loans with Savvy

If you’re looking to find the very best home loan you’ve come to the right place! It doesn’t matter whether you’re looking for your first home, refinancing or looking to invest – Savvy will find you a home loan with the most competitive interest rate which best suits your individual lifestyle needs.

We’ll make it as easy as possible for you to find your perfect home loan by comparing Australian banks and lenders and providing you with all the information you’ll need to make an informed choice. We do the legwork so you don’t have to!

We compare home loan options for you so you can be assured you’re seeing the most competitive interest rates available in Australia.

Figure out how much you want to borrow – choose the features you need – then apply for your loan secure in the knowledge that you’re getting the very best deal possible!

Some of the home loan features and benefits

Low rates

By comparing home loans from multiple lenders, Savvy will help get you the most competitive interest rate available in a loan packed with all the extra features you need.

Flexible loan terms

Whether you need a loan for 10 years or 30, we’ll compare and find you a lender who’s able to offer you the ideal term for your home loan, investment loan or refinance option.

Fixed, variable or combination ‘split’ loans

You have the freedom to choose whether your loan has a fixed interest rate, a variable rate or a combination of the two – it’s entirely your choice!

Flexible repayment options

Match your mortgage repayments to your regular pay cycle, either weekly, fortnightly or monthly, giving you the possibility of paying off your loan sooner. 

Offset accounts available

You can save thousands of dollars in interest payments over the life of your loan by having an offset account linked to your variable home loan account.

Smooth away life’s speed bumps

If you’ve made additional payments into your home loan, a redraw facility will enable you to access these funds if your family circumstances change or life throws a curveball your way.

Early repayment? No problem!

Many of our lenders are now offering lump sum repayment options, so if you suddenly receive a windfall like an inheritance, you could pay off your home loan sooner. 

Help if you’re struggling to save a deposit

If you’re struggling to save a 20% deposit, then lenders mortgage insurance may enable you to get a loan with only 5, 10 or 15% deposit.

Why Savvy is the best choice to help you compare and save

How to apply for your home loan?

Which types of home loan can I choose from?

Variable rate home loan

The most popular and commonly occurring type of home loan in Australia, variable interest rates are determined by market movement, so they may vary between repayments. This means that you’ll be in the best position to take advantage of any drop in interest rates (should they occur) and save yourself a nice chunk of money on your repayments. Variable rate home loans also afford their borrowers an increased level of flexibility when it comes to paying off their home loan, generally allowing extra or early repayments for no added cost and allow them to switch home loans with no exit fee.

The nature of variable loans is such that, because of the potential for your repayments to change on a regular basis, any attempt by you to accurately plan your finances into the future is hindered. You can’t say for certain that you’ll be paying a certain amount of interest across a given period, which can then allow you to spend your money in a particular way down the track. Additionally, although you can capitalise on rate decreases, you’re also susceptible to any rate increases that your lender may enforce. This can cost you a fair amount if you enter the market at the wrong time.

You can see how a variable rate home loan can save you money on your home loan in the table below.

Fixed rate home loan

Unlike variable interest rates, fixed rate home loans stick to the same interest rate for a pre-determined portion of your loan (usually one to five years). The beauty of this is that if you come across a great interest rate that you’d like to stick with for more than a month or two, you can approach a lender to lock it in for an extended period. This certainty surrounding your interest rates also allow for accurate budgeting into the future, giving you a greater idea of where your finances might be sitting at the end of the fixed term.

However, fixed rate home loans generally won’t afford you the same freedom as variable rate home loans regarding extra repayments and early exits. If you want to refinance your home loan during your fixed term, for example, you’re likely to incur a substantial fee for breaking the agreement early. For this reason, you must be extra careful when choosing which home loan to go with. Furthermore, while locking your interest rate in for an extended period of time can protect you from interest rate rises, it can also bar you from accessing better rates that appear during your fixed term.

Split rate home loan

If you can’t make your mind up, you can choose both variable and fixed! Split rate home loans allow you to fix a portion of your home loan whilst keeping the rest variable. What this essentially does is divide your home loan in two so that you can apply two different sets of interest to the respective loan portions. This will ensure that you can maintain a level of certainty around the fixed portion and potentially secure a great rate, whilst also allowing yourself to make additional contributions to the loan whenever you wish. You also generally get a choice of the ratio of fixed to variable on your home loan, so you can tailor it to suit your preferences. You can see how a split rate home loan could save you money in the table below.

It’s important to note, though, that splitting your home loan in two means that you’re not only paying interest on both, but fees as well. It’s best to avoid having to pay extra fees where possible, but they might be tough to dodge with a split rate home loan. There’s also the potential for you to get your split wrong, which can also hurt your back pocket. For example, if your variable rate increases right after you’ve fixed a small portion of your home loan or it decreases after fixing a suboptimal rate, it could sting.

You’re not limited to interest-based options with home loans, though. You might have more specific needs that aren’t directly met by a standard home loan. The above interest rate options generally still apply across the board to these home loan types.

Non-conforming home loan

This loan can also help self-employed workers, but it isn’t limited to just them. As the name indicates, this type of home loan is designed to help out those who don’t quite fit in with the usual lender requirements for a suitable borrower. This may be because they don’t earn enough income or have enough in savings to qualify for a home loan, that their financial history is marred with imperfections that rule them out of contention or that they’re a recent migrant to Australia and can’t confirm their credit history. Interest rates, fees and the required minimum deposit are all generally higher in non-conforming home loans than the standard.

Construction home loan

This type of home loan is designed for those who are looking to build a new property or looking to conduct significant renovations. In contrast to more standard home loans, payments are provided in instalments, known as “progress payments”. These are granted once pre-determined financial milestones have been met. You’ll usually only have to pay interest on the amount you’ve withdrawn, so your repayments will gradually increase the more money you spend.

Line of credit home loan

Alternatively, borrowers can draw from their home equity up to a pre-determined limit to access funds from a line of credit home loan. Home equity is calculated by the amount you owe on your home loan subtracted from the overall value of your property, so this option is generally open to you if you’ve owned your house for a while. Lines of credit can be useful if you’re looking to purchase investment property or renovate your current one, but it can carry greater interest rates than other home loans. You can read more about accessing your home equity here.

Bridging loan

If haven’t been able to sell your property before purchasing your next one for whatever reason, you may look to a bridging loan to help fill the gap. This is a short-term fix to cover yourself between buying and selling, so it’ll usually be capped at six months for you to sell your existing property or 12 if your purchase is being built. Bear in mind also that you’ll have to manage your bridging loan repayments on top of your home loan repayments in the time before you buy.

Frequently asked home loan questions

How long is a home loan term?

A home loan term is typically 30 years. Some lenders may offer terms of 25 or 40 years, but you’re most likely to end up with 30.

What does LVR mean?

LVR stands for Loan to Value ratio.  It compares your loan amount to the total value of your home.  If you want to borrow $100,000 (your loan amount) then many traditional lenders require you to have a 20% deposit, in this case $20,000.  This gives you a Loan to Value ratio of 80%, because you are borrowing 80% of the total cost.

Can I borrow 100% of my property’s value?

Yes – but only if you have a guarantor. This is another person, such as a parent or family member, who acts as an added layer of security for your home loan and becomes liable for the debt should you become unable to repay it. Because of this added security, some lenders will grant funds up to or over 100% of the property’s value. This is useful for borrowers who can’t afford a deposit upfront. 

Can I be approved for a home loan if I have bad credit?

Yes – while it may be difficult, there are options open to customers with bad credit to be approved for their home loan. Click here to read more about bad credit home loans.

If I’m receiving Centrelink payments, can I still qualify for a home loan?

Yes – provided that your Centrelink payments are supplementary to your main income and are purchasing with a partner who is earning enough to qualify you for your home loan.

What is stamp duty and how much will I have to pay?

Stamp duty is a state tax that is levied on the sale of property.  The rate of stamp duty that you’ll have to pay varies from state to state, so there’s no hard and fast answer about how much you’ll have to pay. 

Just as the stamp duty rate changes from state to state, so does the timeframe in which you need to pay it.  

What is a First Home Owner Grant (FHOG?)

The FHOG was introduced in Australia in 2000, and offers a one-off lump sum to first home buyers to help them buy their first home.  There are other schemes in addition to the FHOG which vary from state to state, but most of them have the following conditions:

  • You must be over 18 years to apply
  • You must be an Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • You must be buying the home to live in, and move in within 12 months of purchase
  • You must not have previously owned a home in Australia
  • You must live in your new home for at least 12 months
What additional mortgage fees and charges should I know about?

In addition to stamp duty, there will often be fees and charges associated with your new home loan.  These may include application fees and on-going administration fees.  Additional costs for a new loan will generally be around $500-$800.

 

In addition, you should be aware of the following costs when doing your mortgage calculations:

  • Legal and conveyancing fees. Allow up to $2,000 for these.
  • Lenders Mortgage Insurance – which may apply if you don’t have 20% deposit
  • Building inspection report costs – which will depend on the size of your property
  • Pest inspection report costs – usually around $500 for a general pest report
  • Home insurance – which all lenders will require from the moment you sign your sale contact.
Is it best to choose a fixed or variable interest rate for my home loan?

There are pros and cons to both fixed and variable home loan rates. Fixed rate home loans offer security and allow you to budget and plan your finances in advance.  However, they tend to be ‘no frill’ loans that may not allow you to make additional repayments or use an offset account to lower overall costs.

Variable rate home loans will usually be cheaper than fixed rate loans, and can offer you lots of other features such as offset accounts, lump sum repayments and redraw facilities.  However, if interest rates rise you could find yourself under financial pressure as your repayments increase.

What are interest-only home loans?

Interest-only home loans are usually offered for a set term – usually a year or two – and involve only repaying the interest portion of the loan.  This means your principal sum (the amount you originally borrowed) remains the same. Be aware that interest-only loans do tend to be more expensive in the long term and are usually reserved for property investors.