Variable Rate Home Loans Comparison

Rates and Fees verified correct on July 29th, 2016

Take advantage of a home loan with a flexible interest rate

A variable rate home loan is one of the most common types of home loans in Australia, and is also one of the most competitive products for lenders.

A variable rate home loan is a home loan product which has an interest rate which fluctuates up or down over time as your lender sees fit. Unlike a fixed rate home loan where the rate is locked in for a fixed term, the interest rate of a variable rate mortgage moves up and down in accordance with market changes.

UBank UHomeLoan Variable Rate - Standard Variable Rate Value Offer (Owner Occupier P&I)

UBank UHomeLoan Variable Rate - Standard Variable Rate Value Offer (Owner Occupier P&I)

3 .74 % p.a.

variable rate

3 .74 % p.a.

comparison rate

Variable Rate Home Loan Offer

Apply for the UBank UHomeLoan Variable Rate and get a low rate plus no upfront or ongoing fees as well as unlimited redraws.

  • Interest Rate of 3.74% p.a.
  • Comparison Rate of 3.74% p.a.
  • Application Fee of $0
  • Maximum LVR: 80%
  • Minimum Borrowing: $100,000
  • Maximum Borrowing: $2,000,000

Compare variable home loans

Rates last updated July 29th, 2016.

IMB Budget Home Loan - LVR <80% (Owner Occupier)

Advertised rate decreased to 3.99%

April 6th, 2016

Bank of Queensland Clear Path Variable Rate Home Loan - Discount rate ($150k to less than $500k Owner Occupier)

Interest rate increased by 4.19%

April 15th, 2016

loans.com.au Essentials - Variable (Owner Occupier)

Interest rate decreased by 0.25%

May 5th, 2016

View latest updates

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Product nameInterest Rate (p.a.) Comp Rate^ (p.a.) Application Fee Ongoing Fees Max LVR Monthly Payment
3.74% 3.74% $0 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
loans.com.au Fast Forward Special - Owner Occupier Only
Enjoy a low interest rate, no application fee and fee-free redraws for loans between $50,000 and $500,000.
3.63% 4.03% $0 $375 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
Greater Bank Great Rate Home Loan - Discounted Variable ($150K+ Owner Occupier)
A competitive rate, partial offset account and redraw facility. NSW, QLD and ACT residents only.
3.99% 3.99% $0 $0 p.a. 85% Go to site More info
loans.com.au Essentials - Variable (Owner Occupier)
A low interest rate loan suited for new purchases or refinancing.
3.84% 3.86% $0 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
NAB Base Variable Rate Home Loan - Owner Occupier (P&I)
A competitive no frills home loan with no application fees for a limited time. 250,000 Velocity Frequent Flyer point offer, conditions apply.
4.20% 4.20% $0 $0 p.a. 95% Go to site More info
Australian Unity Kick Starter Home Loan
$0 ongoing service fees, maximum 80% LVR and a linked transaction account.
3.85% 3.88% $600 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
State Custodians Standard Variable Offset Loan - LVR 80% (Owner Occupier)
Special Owner Occupier Rate. Free Offset Account.
3.74% 4.07% $0 $299 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
Newcastle Permanent Building Society Premium Plus Package Home Loan - New Customer Offer ($150,000+ Owner Occupier)
Apply for a new owner occupier loan or refinance from another lender and receive this discounted rate.
3.84% 4.20% $0 $375 p.a. 95% Go to site More info
AMP Essential Home Loan  -  Owner Occupier
Take advantage of a redraw facility, competitive variable rate and no application or settlement fees for a limited time.
4.08% 4.10% $350 $0 p.a. 90% Go to site More info
Beyond Bank Total Home Loan Package - Special Low Rate Variable
A special low variable rate for Owner Occupier with 100% offset account and no application or ongoing fees.
3.98% 3.98% $0 $0 p.a. 95% Go to site More info
Switzer Home Loan
No upfront or ongoing fees and a competitive variable rate for owner occupiers.
3.89% 3.89% $0 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
Heritage Bank Advantage Package - Standard Variable $700,000 + (Owner Occupier)
A package loan with a competitive interest rate and 100% offset account.
3.89% 4.26% $0 $350 p.a. 95% Go to site More info
IMB Budget Home Loan - LVR <80% (Owner Occupier)
A competitive budget rate without any unwanted bells and whistles.
3.94% 3.99% $445 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
CUA Fresh Start Basic Variable Home Loan - Owner Occupier
A basic mortgage available only to customers who switch their everyday banking to CUA.
3.99% 4.04% $600 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
ClickLoans The Online Home Loan -  Owner Occupier ≤ 80% LVR
Take advantage of a 100% offset account with no monthly or annual fees.
3.84% 3.84% $0 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
ME Bank Flexible Home Loan With Member Package - LVR <=80% $400k up to $699,999 (Owner Occupier)
Enjoy a discount of a competitive interest rate and 100% offset account.
3.89% 4.30% $0 $395 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
loans.com.au Offset Variable - Up to 80% LVR (Owner Occupier)
No application or annual fees, and access to a 100% offset account.
3.89% 3.91% $0 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
UBank UHomeLoan Variable Rate - Real Reward Offer (Owner Occupier Interest Only)
A competitive discounted variable rate home loan. 0.33%p.a. Discount Offer for new Owner Occupier Loans.
4.13% 4.13% $0 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
3.99% 4.12% $0 $10 monthly ($120 p.a.) 95% Go to site More info
IMB Essential Home Loan - LVR < 80% (Owner Occupier)
Get a discount on your rate and flexible repayment options with this loan.
4.24% 4.24% $0 $0 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
4.57% 4.92% $0 $375 p.a. 80% Go to site More info
Westpac Flexi First Option Home Loan - 2 Year Introductory Special Offer (Owner Occupier)
A limited time deal for new owner occupiers. Advertised rate includes 1.03%p.a. discount for the first two years.
3.75% 4.16% $0 $0 p.a. 95% More info
St.George Basic Home Loan - Promotional Rate (Owner Occupier >$150k)
A no frills loan with a competitive rate and a maximum LVR of 95%.
4.04% 4.05% $0 $0 p.a. 95% More info

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Aussie is a trade mark of AHL Investments Pty Ltd. Aussie is a partly owned subsidiary of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124 AFSL and Australian Credit Licence 234945. © 2016 AHL Investments Pty Ltd ABN 27 105 265 861 Australian Credit Licence 246786. Credit services for Aussie Select and Aussie Optimizer products are provided by AHL Investments Pty Ltd ACN 105 265 861 ("Aussie") and its appointed credit representatives, Australian Credit Licence 246786. Credit for Aussie Select products is provided by Residential Mortgage Group Pty Ltd ACN 152 378 133, Australian Credit Licence 414133. Credit for Aussie Optimizer products is provided by Perpetual Ltd ACN 000 431 827.

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Aussie’s Mortgage Brokers can save you time and effort by helping you research, organise and apply for your home loan, at no cost to you. They compare hundreds of home loans to help find the right deal for you. Fill out the form on the left and an Aussie Mortgage Broker will meet you at a time of your choosing to discuss your needs and help you find the right loan.

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What is a variable rate home loan?

variable rate home loanA variable rate home loan has an interest rate which can fluctuate as your lender responds to economic factors such as the cost of funding, the Reserve Bank of Australia's official cash rate decisions each month and more.

This means over the course of a year, your home loan rate (and your periodic repayments) might increase or decrease. In Australian history, variable interest rates have seen highs of around 17%, and lows around 3%.

Learn why interest rates change.

Variable rate home loans contrast with fixed rate home loans, where you enter into an agreement with your lender for a predetermined period of time, usually between one to five years, during which your interest rate won't change.

There are also mixtures of variable rate and fixed rate home loans known as split rate loans, and these allow you to split your home loan into two or more portions and allocate variable or fixed rates to each portion.


Pros and cons of a variable rate home loan

In general, variable rate home loans have advantages and disadvantages you should be aware of.

Pros

  • Features. Many variable rate home loans come with useful features, such as the ability to make additional repayments, offset accounts and redraw facilities. These features are not offered in abundance with fixed-rate loans.
  • Easy to refinance. When you opt for a variable rate loan, you have the flexibility to refinance with another lender in order to secure a more competitive deal. With a fixed rate product, however, you would need to pay high discharge fees to exit the loan early.
  • Falling interest rates. A variable rate home loan provides you with the ability to benefit from falling interest rates, which are typically passed on to variable rate customers. Even a 0.25% rate reduction could make a big difference to your periodic repayments.

Cons

  • Interest rate rise. An interest rate rise on a variable rate home loan would make your repayments more expensive, and could make it more difficult to service your loan.
  • Difficult to budget. If your rate is fluctuating regularly, it can be difficult to plan an accurate budget. You might have less money to allocate to other expenses if your home loan repayment rises.

How do you compare variable rate loans?

variable home loanComparing a variable rate home loan should take into account a range of factors, including:

  • Interest rate. Interest rates will impact your repayments, so ensure you choose an interest rate which will result in a repayment you can manage. It's also a good idea to use a repayment calculator to find out what your repayments will look like with the given interest rate, and also add an extra 1% on top of this to see what your repayments would be should interest rates rise. This will help you prepare and manage your interest rate risk.
  • Fees. A variable rate home loan can come with a range of fees, including upfront application fees or ongoing fees, as well as fees to use features including offset accounts or redraw facilities. Ensure that the fees justify the interest rate and features you'll receive with the loan. This is why you should always pay attention to a loan's comparison rate, which takes into account its interest rate and fees and expresses them as a percentage.
  • Features. What features you choose to add to your comparison will depend on how you want to use your home loan. If you prefer to have your salary paid into your home loan to minimise your interest charged, you might want to look for an offset account. If you want a home loan that allows you to make unlimited additional repayments, you might want to look for home loans with a free redraw facility.
  • Eligibility. Different lenders will put limitations on what types of properties they will finance and the types of borrowers they will accept. Ensure the loans you're comparing are available for your situation, including the type and size of the property, your income source and your loan purpose.

Types of variable rate home loans

There are a number of variable rate home loans on offer. These include:

  • Variable rate full featured home loans. Full feature home loans offer a range of extras and useful features, including 100% offset accounts, redraw facilities and more.
  • Variable rate package home loans. Package home loans offer discounted interest rate and fees in return for bundling your credit card, savings accounts and other financial products with your home loan lender. They generally also charge an annual fee, unlike other variable rate home loans.
  • Low doc variable rate home loans. Low doc variable rate home loans suit those who are self-employed or otherwise aren't able to satisfy the usual income evidence requirements lenders set. Low doc home loans can come with a range of features like regular variable rate home loans.
  • Variable rate bad credit home loans. Lenders that offer bad credit home loans have more flexible credit history requirements, and can be applied for by discharged bankrupts or those with paid and unpaid defaults. These will usually have higher fees and rates depending on the severity of your credit score.
  • Introductory rate home loans. Introductory rate home loans are variable rate home loans with a special discounted rate which usually applies for the first year, after which a regular variable rate applies. These can be suited to first home buyers or others trying to minimise interest costs in the first year. An introductory loan can offer a discount off the standard variable interest rate for an introductory period. For example, if your lender's standard variable rate is 5% and your introductory discount is 0.5% then you will save 0.5% for the entire introductory period, so if your lender raises their rates to 5.25% you will pay 4.75% and if their rates go down to 4.50% you will pay just 4% interest.
  • Basic variable rate home loans. A basic variable rate home loan does away with some features offered on the home loans above, such as 100% offset accounts, but in return offers lower interest rates and fees. You can read more about them below.

Things to consider when comparing a variable rate home loan

Keep in mind that while a variable rate home loan can come with a large range of features and is readily available at a wide variety of lenders, there's a chance your rate could decrease or increase over the course of your loan term.

As a result, a variable rate home loan comes with a degree of risk so it's important to review your risk tolerance and your lifestyle needs.

For instance, if you're a young family or you're nearing retirement age, you may want the peace of mind and security offered by a fixed rate home loan.


Frequently asked questions about variable rate home loans

What's the difference between making principal and interest repayments and interest-only repayments?

Your principal is the loan amount you borrow. This is the amount on which your bank will charge you interest. Principal and interest repayments are regular repayments in which some of your repayment goes towards your principal, and some goes towards the interest due for that month. Interest-only repayments are simply repayments where only the interest portion is paid off, meaning they are usually smaller than principal and interest repayments, but also will not see your loan paid off.

What's a 100% offset account?

An offset account is a transaction account which is attached to your home loan. Any funds in the account are used to offset the interest you're charged. For example, if you place $10,000 in your offset account, and you have a loan amount of $150,000, your interest will be calculated on a loan amount of $140,000 rather than $150,000. Offset accounts usually give you complete access to your funds like any other transaction account.

What is a redraw facility?

A redraw facility is a way you can withdraw any extra repayments you've made on your home loan. Redraws are generally offered over the phone or online, and can sometimes attract a fee, and minimum redraw amounts.

What's the difference between a bank and credit union?

Banks and credit unions are both financial institutions which offer products such as home loans, personal loans, credit cards and more. The major difference is that a bank is owned by shareholders (for-profit), while a credit union is owned by its members (non-profit).

How much deposit will I need to buy a home?

This will depend on the home loan and other circumstances, but generally, if you want to avoid Lender's Mortgage Insurance (LMI), the minimum deposit you'll need is 20%. Some loans will allow as little as 5%, or even no deposit if you have a family member guaranteeing you home loan.

What happens if I pay my loan off early?

As always, this will depend on your home loan, so if you think you'll be paying it off early you might want to read the terms and conditions before applying. In many cases, variable rate home loans will charge a discharge fee of between $150 - $400 to exit your home loan if you pay it off early.

Start a comparison of variable rate home loans today

This page was last modified on 22 July 2016 at 17:03.

loans.com.au Fast Forward Special - Owner Occupier Only

Enjoy a low interest rate, no application fee and fee-free redraws for loans between $50,000 and $500,000.

NAB Choice Package Home Loan - 3 Year Fixed (Owner Occupier)

Receive discounts on interest rates with the Choice Package. 250,000 Velocity Frequent Flyer point offer, conditions apply.

ClickLoans The Online Home Loan - Owner Occupier ≤ 70% LVR

Enjoy a competitive interest rate when you have a deposit of at least 25%.

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12 Responses to Variable Rate Home Loans Comparison

  1. Default Gravatar
    Carol | June 17, 2016

    Hi If I reach retirement age and still have a home loan of say $100000, what is the longest term you can pay interest only repayments?
    Thanks
    Carol

    • Staff
      Marc | June 20, 2016

      Hi Carol,
      thanks for the question.

      This will depend on the lender, as each will have their own unique lending criteria. It might be a good idea to consult a mortgage broker to find out the longest term available to you for your situation.

      I hope this helps,
      Marc.

  2. Default Gravatar
    Jon | September 30, 2014

    Hi, how do i search for interest only loans?

    • Staff
      Shirley | October 1, 2014

      Hi Jon,

      Thanks for your question.

      Please see this page for a comparison of interest free home loans.

      For future reference, you can use the search tool (with the magnifying glass) on the top right hand corner of this page to search for certain comparisons.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

  3. Default Gravatar
    Jeff | August 19, 2014

    My bank charges 5.98% variable rate , am I in my right to ask for a better rate like other lenders are give. We have a offset account and does that make difference.

    • Staff
      Marc | August 20, 2014

      Hi Jeff,
      thanks for the question.

      You’re completely within your rights to ask for a better rate, and starting a comparison of what else is out there in the market already is a great place to start. If you let your lender know that you’re unhappy with your rate and thinking of refinancing, there’s a range of incentives they can offer for you to stay, including cash and decreased rates. It never hurts to ask.

      I hope this helps,
      Marc.

  4. Default Gravatar
    Megan | July 11, 2014

    If I choose a variable loan am I locked into that loan for a certain amount of time or can I opt out or change my loan whenever I choose???

    • Staff
      Shirley | July 14, 2014

      Hi Megan,

      Thanks for your question.

      It usually depends on the home loan you’ve committed to. Some lenders could charge a break fee if you leave the loan early and some may not charge this fee when you’ve stayed with the loan for a certain period of time.

      You can check these fees by clicking on the ‘fees’ tab on our home loan reviews, and you can check the PDS of the product to see how long you may need to commit to the loan.

      Generally variable rate home loans are more flexible than fixed rate home loans in terms of exiting – best of luck!

      Cheers,
      Shirley

  5. Default Gravatar
    kate | August 6, 2013

    my home has just been valuaterd at 800000
    what is the most i can borrow and best interest rate

  6. Default Gravatar
    jk | June 26, 2013

    i want to take combination of fixed and variable home loan for 30 yrs. loan amount over $350000.

    what is the maximum period for fixed rate i can opt for in this scheme. i want to split amount in 50 – 50 %.

    thanks and regards

    jk

    • Staff
      Shirley | June 26, 2013

      Hi Jk,

      Thanks for your comment.

      After you’ve chosen a loan that you think might be suitable for you, our review will state the maximum period that you can fix or split your interest rate.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

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