Loan Portability – What is home loan portability?

Moving to a new house doesn’t necessarily mean you need a new loan. Consider getting a portable home loan option to help you save on any future upfront costs

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Loan portability is usually standard on all home loans, which means that if you choose to move houses and you like your current home loan, you can take your loan with you. Essentially you can transfer your existing loan to another property without having to go through the process of refinancing, so long as your new property is within the parameters set by your lender.

What is loan portability?

Loan portability is a feature offered on many loans, which allows you to keep your loan when moving to a new property. Rather than refinancing your home loan, you switch the property you're using as security to take the current property off, and add the new property to the loan.

Usually the term of a regular loan is 30 years, so it is very common for people to move houses while they are still paying off a loan. Loan portability saves you the time and cost associated with closing one loan and applying for a new loan, and it allows you to continue with your current loan number, repayment amount and loan term.

How does loan portability work?

When you apply for a home loan you have to pay upfront costs to secure it. These costs can add up and can increase the overall amount you spend on the loan. When you have a portable loan, it allow you to transfer the loan to a new property if you decide to sell one home and buy a new one.

Loan portability can be convenient and can save you money, as it means:

  • You don't have to apply for a new loan, saving you application and establishment fees.
  • You don't have to change your direct debits and loan numbers.
  • Your loan continues on its trajectory - if you are 6 years into a 30-year loan term, so you have 24 years to go, you move your loan with you to the new property, so you continue to have just 24 years left until you own the home outright.

Keep in mind that your current loan might be the cheapest home loan or the most suitable one for you. Needs change over time, so it's important to make sure your loan still offers the best value. For instance, you might have more savings now than you did when you first got the home loan. Those savings could be sitting in an offset account, helping you pay less mortgage interest.

Or, there might be a better value home loan that offers a cheaper interest rate and saves you money. Before you go down the path of loan portability, make sure you compare current home loan offers to make sure you're not paying too much.

The loan portability process - James and his flexible bank

Title

James wants to sell his property before he buys another. His current home loan has a portability feature, saving him the cost and inconvenience of obtaining another loan. He will keep his existing account number and details – and he also has the option of switching his loan from a fixed to a variable or add more funds when he moves into the new property. To port his loan, he can either call his lender, apply online or go into a branch. His lender informs him that there may a number of fees he needs to pay such as:

  • Stamp duty
  • Legal, setup and utility costs
  • Loan portability fees
  • Agent fees

Pros and cons of loan portability

Pros

One of the main benefits of loan portability is that it will help you save money. This section of the article will explain how loan portability can help you save;

  • Establishment fees. When you apply for a loan you will have to pay establishment fees. Depending on the provider, these fees can be over $1000. By transferring your old loan to the new house you will avoid paying these fees.
  • Exit fees. When you leave a loan you will usually have to pay exit fees. The exact amount of these fees will vary depending on the provider, however they can be quite expensive. By transferring your loan to the new house you’ll avoid paying these fees.

Cons

  • Some restrictions. While loan portability is a great way to save time and money it’s important to know whether there are any restrictions when using this feature. Generally, there are no restrictions on the transfer other than the fact you won’t be able to change the loan structure. This will include the number of borrowers and the interest rate. You won’t have to sign a new contact but if you’re borrowing a different amount of money a variation may have to be signed.
  • Loan portability fee. Most providers charge you a fee to transfer a loan - around a couple of hundred dollars. Usually, this amount will not change even if you are transferring over a large amount of money.

Loan portability: Things to avoid

There’s a few rules you need to follow before transferring your loan. It’s best to confirm these before doing so with your lender as these are general guidelines:

  • Settlement on different days. One of the general rules when using loan portability features is that exchange and settlement for both properties need to occur on the same day. However, this stressful rule varies from lender to lender so confirm this first.
  • Changing loan amounts. The loan amounts for the new property cannot change, so if you need extra funds for the new house you will need to make a new home loan application. Some lenders will let you ‘top up’ your loan, so again remember to check with your lender first.
  • Lacking documentation. Remember to provide evidence to show that you’re moving places. Documents to include are the Contract of Sale and the Contract of Purchase. Valuation documents must also be shown as acceptable security and comply within the Loan to Value (LVR) ratio. New mortgage documents will also need to be issued with the details of the new property.

Portable home loans comparison

$
years
Name Product Interest Rate (p.a.) Comp. Rate (p.a.) Fees Monthly Payment

HSBC Home Value Loan P&IHome≥ 30% Deposit

HSBC Home Value Loan
2.19%
2.20%
  • App: $0
  • Ongoing: $0 p.a.
$569.91
$3,288 refinance cashback offer
This competitive variable rate loan is available for borrowers with 30% deposits. Eligible refinancers borrowing $250,000 or more can get a $3,288 cashback. Terms and conditions apply.

UBank UHomeLoan Variable Rate P&IHome≥ 20% Deposit

UBank UHomeLoan Variable Rate
2.34%
2.34%
  • App: $0
  • Ongoing: $0 p.a.
$581.39
Enjoy flexible repayments, a redraw facility and the ability to split your loan. Plus, pay no application or ongoing fees.

Newcastle Permanent Building Society Real Deal Home Loan P&IHome≥ 20% Deposit

Newcastle Permanent Building Society Real Deal Home Loan
2.59%
2.63%
  • App: $595
  • Ongoing: $0 p.a.
$600.83
$2,000 refinance cashback
$2,000 cashback for eligible refinancers borrowing $250,000 or more.

Heritage Bank Fixed Rate Home Loan P&IHome 2Y Fixed≥ 5% Deposit

Heritage Bank Fixed Rate Home Loan
2.19%
4.23%
  • App: $600
  • Ongoing: $8 per month
$569.91
Get a fixed rate for two years and borrow up to 95%.

Well Home Loans Balanced Fixed Home Loan P&IHome 3Y Fixed≥ 10% Deposit

Well Home Loans Balanced Fixed Home Loan
2.14%
2.06%
  • App: $250
  • Ongoing: $0 p.a.
$566.11
A low 3 year fixed rate for home buyers. Add a 100% offset account with a $10 monthly fee. Not available for construction purposes.

Newcastle Permanent Building Society Fixed Rate Home Loan P&IHome 2Y Fixed≥ 5% Deposit

Newcastle Permanent Building Society Fixed Rate Home Loan
2.29%
3.94%
  • App: $0
  • Ongoing: $0 p.a.
$577.55
Enjoy a low interest rate home loan. Borrow up to 80% (with mortgage insurance) of your home loan value.

Newcastle Permanent Building Society Fixed Rate Home Loan P&IHome 3Y Fixed≥ 5% Deposit

Newcastle Permanent Building Society Fixed Rate Home Loan
2.49%
3.83%
  • App: $0
  • Ongoing: $0 p.a.
$593.01
$2,000 refinance cashback
A low 3-year fixed rate with the option to split your loan for free. $2,000 cashback for eligible refinancers borrowing $250,000 or more.
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8 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    shashiJuly 27, 2017

    What are the charges to pay to a bank for home loan portability? What is the procedure of home loan portability?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      RenchJuly 28, 2017Staff

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      Loan portability is a feature offered on many loans which allows you to keep your loan when moving to a new property, saving you the hassle of refinancing.

      Moving is becoming more and more common, loan portability is offered with many loans meaning you can move the loan with you. Loan portability saves you the time and cost associated with closing off one loan and applying for a new loan.

      Loan portability also have fees that you will encounter:

      – Establishment fees
      – Exit fees
      – Loan portability fee

      You can get this info above this page.

      You may contact your current lender requesting to transfer your current home loan to the other bank. They should be able to explain to how the procedure will be.

      Hope this information helped.

      Cheers,
      Rench

    Default Gravatar
    AndreaApril 15, 2015

    We are with the CBA and wanted to port our loan over to a new property after we sell our current one. I was initially told that it was a simple form to fill out but have now been told that I will need to answer income, liability, outgoings etc questions.

    Our income has reduced since we took out our original loan (we are still able to pay significantly more than we need to in repayments) and we have had two children so I’ve been told that we probably cannot port the loan across as we would no longer qualify for the same loan amount.

    As our house goes up for auction on Saturday, we are now faced with losing our home loan and having to rent until our income increases. To say this is disappointing is an understatement.

    Any suggestions? Please don’t say ‘cancel the auction’ as it’s not an option.

    Thanks very much

      Default Gravatar
      JodieApril 28, 2015

      Hi Andrea,

      Thank you for getting in contact.

      You have reached out to finder.com.au, a financial comparison site, we are not able to offer specific personalised advice. Please contact a mortgage broker whom would be able to advise and assist you with your personalised needs.

      Regards
      Jodie

    Default Gravatar
    GabbyDecember 24, 2014

    Hi,

    We have a home loan with a bank which is portable loan amount is $280,000 we have recently had an offer on our property and we have placed an offer on another property which has been accepted we are trying to time it so everything happens on the same day. Our new property we want to purchase is less than our current home so we will have more than a 20% deposit also the new property is rural on 15acres with a brick house. We did double check with our lender before we placed our house on the market and they assured us that it was portable, but we are getting a broker to help arrange things and she keeps telling us we have to close this account and apply for a new loan, we r just a bit worried this will add extra time and cause delays, can you tell me if this seems right.
    Gabby

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyDecember 29, 2014Staff

      Hi Gabby,

      Thanks for your question.

      Generally the portability feature is designed to help you move properties (at the same or lessor value) while keeping the same home loan. It’s advisable for you to question your mortgage broker on his or her rationale behind applying for a new loan, as this will likely take a longer time than using the portability feature. You may also want to get your mortgage broker to speak to your lender to discuss the situation.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

    Default Gravatar
    shajeeJuly 28, 2014

    I wanted to port a loan from Vic to QLD and i want to reduce the loan amount to 321000 to 305000 what is the possibility and is there any other fee involved

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyJuly 29, 2014Staff

      Hi Shajee,

      Thanks for your question.

      Please speak to you lender about porting your loan. This feature is quite common across home loans in Australia.

      In terms of reducing your loan amount, you will also need to bring this up with your lender. Generally there are some fees involved with using the portability feature. (Again, this will depend on your home loan and your lender.)

      Cheers,
      Shirley

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