Refinance Home Loans: Best Rates & Expert Guide

  • Compare refinance home loan rates from 5.48% p.a. (comparison rate^ 6.24% p.a.)
  • Get exclusive tips on refinancing from our home loans expert
Refinancing your home loan
Refinancing your home loan
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Best refinance home loan rates Australia (lowest variable rates)

Compare variable rate owner-occupier refinance home loans (principal & interest). Table is sorted by the lowest interest rate, then the lowest comparison rate.

Regional Australia Bank - Introductory Basic Home Loan Variable

Variable interest rate

5.74% p.a. variable (3-year intro rate)

Comparison rate^

6.23% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

Arab Bank Australia - The Basics Home Loan Variable

Variable interest rate

5.75% p.a. variable (special offer)

Comparison rate^

5.88% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

60%

G&C Mutual Bank - Essential Worker Owner Occupied

Variable interest rate

5.80% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

5.83% p.a.

Features
  • Designed for frontline & essential workers (e.g. healthcare, law enforcement, education)
  • 100% offset account
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

95%

Summerland Bank - Eco Home Loan Variable

Variable interest rate

5.84% p.a. variable (special offer)

Comparison rate^

5.89% p.a.

Features
  • Additional repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

60%

Reduce Home Loans - Eco Home Loan Owner Occupied

Variable interest rate

5.84% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

5.89% p.a.

Features
  • Additional repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

60-80%

Bank Australia - Clean Energy Eco Plus Home Loan

Variable interest rate

5.88% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

6.38% p.a.

Features
  • 100% offset
  • Redraw
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

90%

Pacific Mortgage Group - Owner Occupied Variable

Variable interest rate

5.89% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

5.89% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

The Mutual Bank - Budget Owner Occupied Variable Home Loan

Variable interest rate

5.89% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

5.89% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

Australian Mutual Bank - Gumleaf Basic Variable

Variable interest rate

5.89% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

5.96% p.a.

Features
  • Additional repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

60%

G&C Mutual Bank - Momentum Home Loan Special

Variable interest rate

5.90% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

5.93% p.a.

Features
  • 100% offset
  • Redraw
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

60%

The Mac Credit Union - Intro Basic Owner Occupied Variable

Variable interest rate

5.92% p.a. variable (2-year intro rate)

Comparison rate^

7.57% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

95%

Greater Bank - Great Rate Home Loan Variable

Variable interest rate

5.94% p.a. variable (special offer)

Comparison rate^

5.95% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

Tiimely Home - Livein Owner Occupied

Variable interest rate

5.94% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

5.95% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

90%

Hume Bank - liteBlue Owner Occupied Variable

Variable interest rate

5.94% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

5.95% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

60%

Community First Bank - Basic Home Loan Variable

Variable interest rate

5.94% p.a. variable

Comparison rate^

5.99% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

95%

Variable interest rate Comparison rate^FeaturesMaximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

Regional Australia Bank - Introductory Basic Home Loan Variable

5.74% p.a. variable (3-year intro rate)

6.23% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

80%

Arab Bank Australia - The Basics Home Loan Variable

5.75% p.a. variable (special offer)

5.88% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

60%

G&C Mutual Bank - Essential Worker Owner Occupied

5.80% p.a. variable

5.83% p.a.

  • Designed for frontline & essential workers (e.g. healthcare, law enforcement, education)
  • 100% offset account

95%

Summerland Bank - Eco Home Loan Variable

5.84% p.a. variable (special offer)

5.89% p.a.

  • Additional repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

60%

Reduce Home Loans - Eco Home Loan Owner Occupied

5.84% p.a. variable

5.89% p.a.

  • Additional repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

60-80%

Bank Australia - Clean Energy Eco Plus Home Loan

5.88% p.a. variable

6.38% p.a.

  • 100% offset
  • Redraw

90%

Pacific Mortgage Group - Owner Occupied Variable

5.89% p.a. variable

5.89% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

80%

The Mutual Bank - Budget Owner Occupied Variable Home Loan

5.89% p.a. variable

5.89% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

80%

Australian Mutual Bank - Gumleaf Basic Variable

5.89% p.a. variable

5.96% p.a.

  • Additional repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

60%

G&C Mutual Bank - Momentum Home Loan Special

5.90% p.a. variable

5.93% p.a.

  • 100% offset
  • Redraw

60%

The Mac Credit Union - Intro Basic Owner Occupied Variable

5.92% p.a. variable (2-year intro rate)

7.57% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

95%

Greater Bank - Great Rate Home Loan Variable

5.94% p.a. variable (special offer)

5.95% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

80%

Tiimely Home - Livein Owner Occupied

5.94% p.a. variable

5.95% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

90%

Hume Bank - liteBlue Owner Occupied Variable

5.94% p.a. variable

5.95% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

60%

Community First Bank - Basic Home Loan Variable

5.94% p.a. variable

5.99% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed
  • Redraw facility

95%

Rates are current as of 01 May 2024. ^Warning: Comparison rates are calculated based on a loan amount of $150,000 repaid over a 25-year term with monthly repayments. Different loan amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Check with the provider for full loan details, including rates, fees, eligibility and terms and conditions to make sure the product is right for you. While this is an extensive list of the lowest-rate refinance home loans in Australia, we can't guarantee that all loans available in the market are shown.

Best refinance home loan rates Australia (lowest fixed rates)

Compare fixed rate owner-occupier refinance home loans (principal & interest) sorted by the lowest interest rate, then the lowest comparison rate.

Australian Mutual Bank - Owner Occupied Fixed

Interest rate

5.48% p.a., fixed for 3 years

5.63% p.a., fixed for 2 years

5.63% p.a., fixed for 5 years

Comparison rate^

6.24% p.a. (3-year fixed)

6.35% p.a. (2-year fixed)

6.16% p.a. (5-year fixed)

Features
  • No monthly or annual fees
  • Additional repayments allowed
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

95%

Regional Australia Bank - Fixed Home Loan

Interest rate

5.66% p.a., fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

5.91% p.a.

Features
  • No monthly service fees
  • Interest-only repayment option
  • Discounted rate on Your Choice Visa credit card
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

60%

HSBC - Home Loan Package Fixed

Interest rate

5.69% p.a., fixed for 4 years

Comparison rate^

6.37% p.a.

Features
  • Additional repayments allowed up to $10,000
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

Bank Australia - Clean Energy Eco Plus Home Loan Owner Occupied

Interest rate

5.69% p.a., fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

6.37% p.a.

Features
  • Offset

  • Construction loans available

Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

90%

Horizon Bank - Rate Home Loan Owner Occupied

Interest rate

5.69% p.a., fixed for 5 years

5.69% p.a., fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

6.36% p.a. (5-year fixed)

6.48% p.a. (3-year fixed)

Features
  • 100% offset

  • Redraw

Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

70%

Police Credit Union - Owner Occupied Fixed

Interest rate

5.69% p.a., fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

7.02% p.a.

Features
  • No annual or monthly fees

  • Additional repayments up to $20,000 allowed

Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

MOVE Bank - Everyday Home Loan Fixed

Interest rate

5.79% p.a, fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

5.98% p.a.

Features
  • Additional repayments allowed
  • Redraw
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

95%

People's Choice - Home Loan Package Owner Occupier

Interest rate

5.79% p.a, fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

6.38% p.a.

Features
  • Additional repayments allowed up to $10,000

  • Split loan option

Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

ME Bank - Member Package Flexible Owner Occupied

Interest rate

5.79% p.a, fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

6.56% p.a.

Features
  • Offset
  • No valuation fee
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

Illawarra Credit Union - The Works Package Home Loan Fixed

Interest rate

5.79% p.a., fixed for 3 years

5.79% p.a., fixed for 2 years

Comparison rate^

6.62% p.a. (3-year fixed)

6.67% p.a. (2-year fixed)

Features
  • No annual credit card fee
  • Split loan option
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

95%

Police Credit Union - Owner Occupied Fixed

Interest rate

5.69% p.a., fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

7.02% p.a.

Features
  • No annual fees
  • Additional repayments allowed up to $20,000 per year
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

G&C Mutual Bank - Owner Occupied Fixed

Interest rate

5.80% p.a., fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

5.86% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments of up to 5% of the loan balance each year
  • Redraw
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

95%

Up Home - Owner Occupied Fixed

Interest rate

5.80% p.a., fixed for 5 years

5.80% p.a., fixed for 4 years

5.80% p.a., fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

5.89% p.a. (5-year fixed)

5.90% p.a. (4-year fixed)

5.91% p.a. (3-year fixed)

Features
  • Low or no fees
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

90%

BOQ - Owner Occupied Fixed Special Offer

Interest rate

5.89% p.a. (discounted 3-year fixed rate)

Comparison rate^

6.37% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments up to $10,000 allowed
  • Eligible refinancers can get up to $2,000 cashback
  • Weekly, fortnightly or monthly repayments
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

90-95%

Queensland Country Bank - Package Home Loan Fixed

Interest rate

5.89% p.a., fixed for 2 years

Comparison rate^

6.48% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

Qudos Bank - Owner Occupied Fixed

Interest rate

5.94% p.a., fixed for 3 years

Comparison rate^

6.23% p.a.

Features
  • Extra repayments allowed up to $10,000 per year
  • Redraw facility
Maximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

80%

Interest rate Comparison rate^FeaturesMaximum loan-to-value ratio (LVR)

Australian Mutual Bank - Owner Occupied Fixed

5.48% p.a., fixed for 3 years

5.63% p.a., fixed for 2 years

5.63% p.a., fixed for 5 years

6.24% p.a. (3-year fixed)

6.35% p.a. (2-year fixed)

6.16% p.a. (5-year fixed)

  • No monthly or annual fees
  • Additional repayments allowed

95%

Regional Australia Bank - Fixed Home Loan

5.66% p.a., fixed for 3 years

5.91% p.a.

  • No monthly service fees
  • Interest-only repayment option
  • Discounted rate on Your Choice Visa credit card

60%

HSBC - Home Loan Package Fixed

5.69% p.a., fixed for 4 years

6.37% p.a.

  • Additional repayments allowed up to $10,000
  • Redraw facility

80%

Bank Australia - Clean Energy Eco Plus Home Loan Owner Occupied

5.69% p.a., fixed for 3 years

6.37% p.a.

  • Offset

  • Construction loans available

90%

Horizon Bank - Rate Home Loan Owner Occupied

5.69% p.a., fixed for 5 years

5.69% p.a., fixed for 3 years

6.36% p.a. (5-year fixed)

6.48% p.a. (3-year fixed)

  • 100% offset

  • Redraw

70%

Police Credit Union - Owner Occupied Fixed

5.69% p.a., fixed for 3 years

7.02% p.a.

  • No annual or monthly fees

  • Additional repayments up to $20,000 allowed

80%

MOVE Bank - Everyday Home Loan Fixed

5.79% p.a, fixed for 3 years

5.98% p.a.

  • Additional repayments allowed
  • Redraw

95%

People's Choice - Home Loan Package Owner Occupier

5.79% p.a, fixed for 3 years

6.38% p.a.

  • Additional repayments allowed up to $10,000

  • Split loan option

80%

ME Bank - Member Package Flexible Owner Occupied

5.79% p.a, fixed for 3 years

6.56% p.a.

  • Offset
  • No valuation fee

80%

Illawarra Credit Union - The Works Package Home Loan Fixed

5.79% p.a., fixed for 3 years

5.79% p.a., fixed for 2 years

6.62% p.a. (3-year fixed)

6.67% p.a. (2-year fixed)

  • No annual credit card fee
  • Split loan option

95%

Police Credit Union - Owner Occupied Fixed

5.69% p.a., fixed for 3 years

7.02% p.a.

  • No annual fees
  • Additional repayments allowed up to $20,000 per year

80%

G&C Mutual Bank - Owner Occupied Fixed

5.80% p.a., fixed for 3 years

5.86% p.a.

  • Extra repayments of up to 5% of the loan balance each year
  • Redraw

95%

Up Home - Owner Occupied Fixed

5.80% p.a., fixed for 5 years

5.80% p.a., fixed for 4 years

5.80% p.a., fixed for 3 years

5.89% p.a. (5-year fixed)

5.90% p.a. (4-year fixed)

5.91% p.a. (3-year fixed)

  • Low or no fees

90%

BOQ - Owner Occupied Fixed Special Offer

5.89% p.a. (discounted 3-year fixed rate)

6.37% p.a.

  • Extra repayments up to $10,000 allowed
  • Eligible refinancers can get up to $2,000 cashback
  • Weekly, fortnightly or monthly repayments

90-95%

Queensland Country Bank - Package Home Loan Fixed

5.89% p.a., fixed for 2 years

6.48% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed

80%

Qudos Bank - Owner Occupied Fixed

5.94% p.a., fixed for 3 years

6.23% p.a.

  • Extra repayments allowed up to $10,000 per year
  • Redraw facility

80%

Rates are current as of 01 May 2024. ^Warning: Comparison rates are calculated based on a loan amount of $150,000 repaid over a 25-year term with monthly repayments. Different loan amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Check with the provider for full loan details, including rates, fees, eligibility and terms and conditions to make sure the product is right for you. While this is an extensive list of the lowest-rate refinance home loans in Australia, we can't guarantee that all loans available in the market are shown.

Expert tip for finding the best refinance home loan

Mansour Soltani

“Don't be afraid of the smaller lenders as they can be the most innovative and competitive. The risk appetite of lenders and their offers change regularly – sometimes monthly – so it’s worth checking the market often to see what’s available. A mortgage broker can check all the lenders on their panel for you at once to see who can offer you the best deal.”

Mansour Soltani, Money.com.au's home loan expert

How does home loan refinancing work?

Refinancing a home loan means switching from your current loan to a new one, either with the same lender or a different provider. When you refinance, your current home loan is closed and the balance is moved across to the new loan for you to continue repaying it.

Ideally you’ll refinance to a home loan offering better terms (interest rate, fees, features), meaning your repayments could be lower with the new loan.

Alternatively, you may also be able refinance to a higher loan amount (if you need to borrow more), or move to a loan with a shorter term to save on interest.

In either of these cases, your repayments will likely be higher after the refinance.

“Borrowers should get into the habit of reviewing their home loan pricing every 12 months and refinancing every couple of years,” our home loans expert and mortgage broker, Mansour Soltani, says.

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According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australians refinance around 60,000 home loans every month. About two-thirds of these are owner-occupier loans and the rest are loans for investment properties.

How much could you save by refinancing your home loan?

Existing home loanRefinance home loan

Remaining home loan balance

$600,000

$600,000

Interest rate

6.5%

5.5%

Minimum fortnightly repayment

$1,869

$1,700

Total interest saving over remaining loan term

n/a

$109,944

This is a simplified hypothetical example only and does not factor in refinancing costs (e.g. application fees) or the impact of features on overall costs.

Potential benefits of home loan refinancing

Interest and fees

Save on interest and fees

Debt consolidation loans

Borrow more if you need it

Lender loan assessment

Access better home loan features

Australian Lenders

Reorganise your finances based on your current needs

Possible downsides of refinancing

Consolidating debt

Break costs (on old loan)

Bank Statement Health

Applications fees (on new loan)

Australian Customer Support

Requires a full new application

Credit Score

Can impact your credit score in short term

Common refinancing misconception

Mansour Soltani

“A lot of people don't realise that refinancing a home loan involves an application, like the one you did when you purchased your home and got the loan originally. It's the same amount of work really. The only thing that's missing is a contract of sale for the property. But the upside of refinancing can massively outweigh the effort.” - Mansour Soltani, home loans expert.

Mansour Soltani, Money.com.au's home loan expert

Most common reasons to refinance a home loan

1

Get a better home loan deal

As an established borrower, lenders are eager for your business and may offer you better deals. This can mean lower interest rates and lower fees, better loan features and more flexibility.

2

Borrow more by releasing equity

If you’ve built up equity in your property, refinancing could allow you to borrow more against that equity for purposes like renovating, buying an investment property or investing in shares.

3

Lock in a shorter loan term

If you can afford higher repayments, refinancing to a shorter loan term will mean big interest savings.

4

Switch to a different loan type

You may decide it’s time to move to a fixed rate or from fixed to variable. Or from principal and interest repayments to interest only (or vice versa).

5

Fixed rate term is ending

If your fixed rate is coming to an end and you don’t want to be automatically rolled onto your lender’s standard variable rate, you’ll need to refinance.

6

Restructuring finances following divorce/separation

For example, you may need to refinance if one spouse or partner is buying out the other’s share in a home.

7

Consolidating debt

Refinancing your home loan could enable you to roll other debts into your mortgage (i.e. increase your home loan size). This would mean a potentially lower rate on those debts but likely over a longer loan term.

8

Fed up with your current lender

Some people simply refinance because they have had a poor experience with their current lender and want to vote with their feet.

How to switch home loans

How to get the best deal when refinancing a home loan (step-by-step guide)

The actual process of refinancing is very similar to taking out a first-home buyer home loan to buy a property initially. But here are some specific steps that could help you to get the best deal possible as a refinancer.

1. Ask your current lender for a better deal first

The average mortgage rate in Australia is higher for existing customers than those taking out a new loan, but there's no harm asking our current lender if they can give you a discount.

“Particularly if it's a high loan amount, lenders want to hold that loan on their books, Mansour explains.

"So they'll typically come back with a better rate, and then we have a look at the market to see what’s available compared to that offer.

“The reality is, a lot of the time your current lender won’t match a lower rate from another provider. Because of how banks fund loans, new loans are typically cheaper to fund than existing loans. But what they might do is try to make the difference between their rate and the competitor’s so small that you decide refinancing isn’t worth it.”

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If rate isn’t the deciding factor, it may come down to the loan features your current lender can offer versus what you can get elsewhere.

2. Maximise your property valuation

When you’re buying a property, the mantra is ‘location, location, location’. But when you’re refinancing your home loan, that changes to ‘valuation, valuation, valuation’.

As part of the refinancing process, a lender will have your property valued. Mansour says he compares multiple lenders for his clients based on the valuation they will offer on the property. He calls this ‘shopping the val’.

The aim is getting the highest valuation possible. That can mean you are eligible to refinance at a lower interest rate on account of your lower loan-to-value ratio, or you can borrow more against your equity (a higher property valuation equals higher equity for the owner).

According to Mansour, the lender offering the lowest rates can often be more conservative when valuing properties. Hence the need to shop around.

Tip: Don't read too much into online property valuations - the lender's valuation may be very different

Home loan refinance property valuation

3. Compare rates

Getting a lower interest rate on your home loan by refinancing will save you money. Sometimes a lot of money.

That’s assuming the other major aspects of the loan are the same. For example, if you refinance from a loan with principal and interest repayments to an interest-only loan, the interest rates available may be higher. The same goes if you're refinancing a variable rate home loan to a fixed rate home loan.

Looking at the comparison rate will give you an idea of the overall cost of the loan per year, including interest and fees.

The trade off with some of the lowest rate loans is they tend to be available on more basic home loans that are light on features.

Speaking of which…

4. Get loan features that will make a difference

Refinancing to a loan with better features could also save you a lot of money. For example:

  • Offset account: An offset account is a transaction account where the balance reduces (offsets) the balance of your home loan that interest is charged on.
  • Flexibility to make extra repayments: Some loans limit this, others don’t.
  • Redraw: If you make extra repayments, a redraw facility allows you to withdraw that money again if you need it.
  • Cashback: Some lenders offer refinance cashback as a perk for switching your loan to them.

“I often recommend a redraw to clients for an owner occupier and an offset for an investment property. Redraws are generally free and act in a very similar way to an offset,” according to Mansour.

Read more about the differences between offset and redraw.

5. Negotiate on fees

If there are application fees for refinancing to a new lender, ask if these can be waived. In a lot of cases, they can be if the lender is keen to get the deal across the line or your broker has a strong relationship with the lender.

The home loan fees charged by your existing lender when you leave (discharge fees) are naturally harder to negotiate away.

6. Think about the loan term

Whatever you do, don’t let your loan term be inadvertently extended. Some lenders may default new customers (even those refinancing) onto a 30-year loan term. Ideally you want the same loan term, or even a shorter one if you can afford the higher repayments.

If you refinance to a lower rate, but keep your regular repayment at the same level as your old loan, your loan term should be shorter under the new loan.

7. And the long term

While understandably you may be primarily motivated by getting the best deal you can right now, remember you are still signing up for a loan that may take decades to repay.

As well as getting the best refinance deal for now, consider:

  • If you’re refinancing to a fixed rate, how competitive is the revert rate that will apply when the fixed term ends?
  • Is the lender known for being competitive generally? Or does it just happen to have a super cheap loan offer available currently to sign up customers? A mortgage broker can be useful for letting you know which lenders are best at regularly repricing their borrowers’ loans to a better rate over time.
  • Does refinancing your current loan make sense? For example, if you're locked into a fixed-rate loan and face high break costs, you might choose a second mortgage instead

Am I eligible to refinance my home loan?

Just because you were initially eligible for a home loan, it doesn’t mean you will automatically be approved to refinance. A new lender will still assess your home loan application thoroughly.

If your circumstances have changed (your income, other debts, credit score etc.), that will be taken into account. That said, having a record of consistently repaying your previous home loan will likely count in your favour.

For example, some borrowers who originally had to take out a bad credit home loan or a low doc home loan later refinance to a better rate once their credit has improved.

The valuation of your property matters a lot here too. If your property has dropped in value since you took out your loan initially, refinancing may be more difficult unless you have paid off a big chunk of the loan in the meantime.

In other words, your loan-to-value ratio will need to be below 80%, or you may need to pay for lender’s mortgage insurance (even if you also had to pay for it with your previous lender).

“The best thing you can do in the scenario is ask for a pricing review with your current lender, just don’t be surprised if the lender doesn’t ultimately offer you a discount,” Mansour explains.

Australia's Money Matchmaker matching you with your best loans across multiple lenders
If you’re concerned about your eligibility to refinance, using a mortgage broker could be worthwhile as they have specialist knowledge of lenders’ policies and ‘serviceability buffers’ (the difference between your actual minimum repayment and the higher amount the lender will use to assess whether you could still afford the loan if rates increase.).

More home loan refinance FAQs

You can usually apply for a refinance home loan online in a matter of minutes, but realistically it can take several weeks for the entire process from start to finish.

There’s no actual upper limit on how often you can refinance, but there are refinancing costs to consider and generally you’ll need to be on any particular loan for a while in order for the savings to offset the costs.

Remember too that refinancing involves a new application and credit enquiry that goes on your credit report. Refinancing very frequently could become a red flag for future lenders. Plus, what lender is going to want to sign up a borrower who is very unlikely to hang around for long?

If you can get a better or more suitable home loan deal by switching your loan, that is generally a good time to be considering a refinance. But here are some other common refinancing ‘triggers’:

  • You have been consistently paying off your current loan for at least 12-24 months and want to ensure you’re still on the best deal possible.
  • Your home interest rate has recently increased and is no longer competitive relative to other loans available.
  • Your fixed rate term is ending soon and you want to be proactive about what happens next (i.e. not just automatically being moved onto your lender’s standard variable rate which is typically what happens by default).
  • Your home has had an uplift in value, meaning your loan-to-value ratio is lower (in other words, less risky for lenders) and you may be eligible for a better rate as a result.
  • You have built up equity in your home and want to use that to borrow more – for example, to buy an investment property or invest in shares. Consider getting financial advice from a qualified advisor before doing this.
  • Your personal circumstances have changed and your current loan is no longer suitable. Divorce/separation is a common reason.
  • You had bad credit when you took out your initial loan but your situation has improved – you may be eligible to refinance with a wider selection of lenders.

You can generally fix your home loan for a period of one to five years. Compare interest rates on fixed rate home loans:

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What's the next step on your property journey? Our home loan guides will help you navigate the road ahead, whether you're buying, building or looking to save on an existing loan.

Written by

Sean Callery Editor Money.com.au

Editor

Sean Callery

Reviewed by

Mansour Soltani home loan expert

Home Loans Expert

Mansour Soltani

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