In our monthly Ratehacker round-up, Jeremy Cabral from comparison site finder.com.au highlights the latest credit card deals, plus the best savings accounts and home loans. What are your best options following this week's rate cut?
Money picture from Shutterstock
This week's Federal Budget doesn't make much difference to anyone's day-to-day finances, but the decision by the Reserve Bank to lower the official cash rate after a year of stability has had a big impact. Most banks have announced plans to cut interest on variable rate home loans (though they'll make a small fortune by holding off for a couple of weeks)
We've also seen cuts to business loan rates, while savings accounts are also lowering rates. Even with the official rate change, there's still a lot of variation in what's on offer, so it definitely pays to shop around.
Feature: 0 percent balance transfer
American Express Essential: 0% p.a. for 12 months and $50 credit To earn the $50 credit, you need to spend $500 on the card in the first two months. While balance transfers are at 0% interest for 12 months, the purchase rate for any new buys is 14.99%. There's no annual fee and the card also includes complimentary smartphone insurance.
Feature: No fees on international transactions
Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard: No foreign transaction fees and complimentary travel insurance For frequent travellers, the combination of no transaction fees and complimentary travel insurance is appealing, and online shopping addicts could also potentially save with this card. Happily, there's no annual fee either.
Feature: No-fee platinum card
HSBC Platinum Credit Card: Waiver of $149 annual fee If you spend more than $6,000 a year on this card, you won't have to pay the annual fee. There's also a 0% balance transfer offer for 15 months. The purchase rate is a relatively high 19.99%, so try and take advantage of the interest-free days (up to 55 of them) to pay out any expenditure each month.
Feature: Variable rate home loan
UBank UHomeLoan Standard Variable Rate Value Offer: 3.99% p.a. with no application or ongoing fees either Even with rate cuts across the board, this offer remains competitive, especially because of the lack of fees. You'll need a 20% deposit to qualify, and it's only available to owner-occupiers. The Australian Unity Kick Starter Home Loan has a similar comparison rate (3.99%) if you're looking for alternatives.
Feature: Low doc home loan
ClickLoans Online Home Loan (Low Doc): 4.99% variable rate If you don't qualify for a regular loan because of employment history or other issues, this is a relatively decent rate. You will need a 25% deposit to qualify for this rate.
Feature: Bonus saver interest rate
ME Online Savings Account: 3.60% bonus for tap and go users As noted, the cut in rates has hit savings accounts, but this is still a competitive offer. The base rate is 1.80%, but you can double that if you link the account to an ME Bank transaction account and make a weekly tap and go purchase with your debit MasterCard.
Feature: Everyday transaction account
NAB Classic Banking: No account fees and NAB Pay Unusually for a Big Four bank, this account doesn't have any minimum deposit requirements to avoid account fees. You can use the full NAB and RediATM network, and NAB Pay allows contactless payments from Android phones.
Feature: Fixed rate new car loan
Beyond Bank Low Rate Car Loan: 6.74% per annum rate The minimum loan amount for this loan is $25,000, so it's better-suited to new car purchases. You can make extra repayments withoiut penalty. The application fee is $150.
Feature: Policy discount
Go Insurance Travel Insurance: 10% off policies Score a discount on your travel insurance with this finder.com.au exclusive coupon.
Jeremy Cabral is the Publisher at finder.com.au and finder.com which includes tools to compare credit cards, find savings accounts and pick the best mobile phone plans, and a constantly updated database of discounts and coupon codes. Connect with Jeremy on Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+.