Ratehacker: The Best Rates for Home and Renovation Loans in December

Ratehacker: The Best Rates for Home and Renovation Loans in December
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Welcome to the final Ratehacker for 2021!

If you’ve made it this far without refinancing your mortgage, cutting up your credit card or looking for ways to finance your home renovation dreams, don’t fret. We’ve got you covered with some of the most competitive financial products to help you tick your goals for the new year.

Finding fixed rates below 2%

In the final Reserve Bank of Australia meeting on monetary policy, the cash rate was left on hold again at its record low of 0.10%. However, this has not stopped home loan lenders hiking their fixed rates en masse as the threat of potential rate rises loom.

According to the RateCity database it’ the big four banks have been lifting their fixed rates multiple times a month. At the time of writing:

For homeowners and would-be borrowers looking to lock in a rock-bottom home loan rate, there are still 68 lenders offering interest rates below 2%.

Fixed rate home loan Rate Comparison Rate
Greater Bank – 1 year fixed

1.59%

2.15%

RACQ Bank – 1 year fix

1.79%

2.58%

Qudos Bank – 1 year fixed

1.79%

2.43%

UBank – 1 year fixed

1.79%

2.18%

Beyond Bank – 2 years fixed

1.79%

2.58%

Source: RateCity.com.au. Note: Rates for owner-occupiers paying principal and interest. Data accurate as of 20/12/21.

New year, new home loan rate

It’s been a rollercoaster year for home loans, with banks slashing variable rates while hiking fixed rate loans across the board. In fact, at the time of writing, 107 lenders have cut at least one variable home loan rate (86% of the RateCity database) in 2021.

However, most lenders have cut basic variable rates for new customers only. Meaning, it may be easier to gain a rock-bottom home loan rate by becoming a new customer and refinancing.

If you’re considering refinancing your mortgage in 2022, here are some of the current lowest variable owner-occupier home loan rates (paying principal and interest) on offer for refinancers.

Lowest variable home loans Rate Comparison rate
Reduce Home Loans

1.77%

1.86%

Homestar Finance

1.79%

1.84%

Pacific Mortgage Group

1.79%

1.79%

Well Home Loans

1.82%

1.85%

Freedom Lend

1.84%

1.86%

Source: RateCity.com.au. Note: Rates for owner-occupier refinancers paying principal and interest. Data accurate as of 20/12/21.

Funding your 2022 renovation goals

With more and more Aussies spending time at home due to flexible working arrangements and pandemic-related restrictions, homeowners have had a lot of time to fixate on their properties. And with this time comes a growing list of new renovation goals to kick for 2022, such as updating the home office or adding an extension.

Due to the current increase in new builds and renovations, as well as global supply chain disruptions and material shortages, the cost of residential construction has increased by 3.8% in the three months to September 2021, according to the latest CoreLogic Cordell Construction Cost Index.

If your renovation plans are being hindered by a lack of funds, it may be worth considering a renovation personal loan. There are a range of secured renovation loans available with interest rates below 10%:

Secured personal loan lender Rate from Comparison rate
Summerland Credit Union

4.04%

4.65%

Australian Mutual Bank

4.45%

4.59%

Pepper Money

4.95%

4.95%

St.George Bank/Bank of Melbourne/BankSA

4.99%

6.13%

Coastline Credit Union

5.11%

5.39%

Source: RateCity.com.au. Note: Data accurate as of 20/12/21.

Balance transfer cards for your holiday debt

Christmas isn’t even here yet but plenty of Australians may already be feeling the pinch, as our spending ramps up in time for the holidays. However, come January you may find that your holiday spending has left you with a bit of a financial hangover.

If 2022 surprises you with a hefty credit card bill, it may be worth considering a balance transfer credit card. This card type may allow you to transfer the balance of your current card to a new one, typically with a large interest-free window. This may offer some much-needed breathing room for your card repayments.

Here are some of the lengthiest credit card balance transfer periods available:

Credit card Balance transfer offer
HSBC Platinum Credit Card 36 months
Bankwest Zero Platinum Mastercard 34 months
Great Southern Bank Low Rate Credit Card 33 months
St.George Bank Vertigo Visa 32 months
NAB Low Rate Card 32 months

Source: RateCity.com.au. Note: Data accurate as of 20/12/21.

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