NAB Defence Force Fixed Rate Home Loan

A Defence Force home loan with a fixed rate and the backing of one of the big four banks

NAB has been providing home loan options to cater to those benefiting from the Defence Home Owner Scheme since 1991, and gives eligible Defence Force members flexible options when participating in the assistance scheme. The NAB Defence Force Fixed Rate Home Loan has low fees and allows for flexible repayments.

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Richard Whitten is a money editor at Finder, and has been covering home loans, property and personal finance for 6+ years. He has written for Yahoo Finance, Money Magazine and Homely; and has appeared on various radio shows nationwide. He holds a Certificate IV in mortgage broking and finance (RG 206) and a Tier 1 Generic Knowledge certification (RG 146).

Expert review

Eligible Defence Force members can receive subsidy payments on their mortgage through the Defence Force Home Ownership Scheme by applying for the home loan with one of the three Defence-nominated providers, NAB being one of them. After you take out a home loan your subsidy will be paid directly into your home loan. The amount you borrow will be dependent on your home loan provider, and does not depend on any conditions within the scheme. The Defence Force will then subsidise a certain amount of the loan based on your eligible subsidy tier.

About this loan

The NAB Defence Force Fixed Rate Home Loan is available to Australian Defence Force members participating in the new Defence Home Ownership Assistance Scheme. The loan is intended to be used for people looking to buy property or refinance an existing mortgage, but cannot be used for investment purposes. Eligible Defence Force members will need to reside in the home for a minimum of 12 months to continue receiving subsidies.

What are the features and benefits of the NAB Defence Force Home Loan?

The loan combines the benefits of saving with the Defence Home Ownership Assistance Scheme with NAB's flexible options. Some of the features of the loan include:

  • Flexible repayments. You can make repayments every week, fortnight or month and can make additional repayments, which are unlimited on variable rate loans and limited to up to $20,000 for fixed rate home loans.
  • Maximum loan-to-value ratio. Borrowers can borrow up to 95% of the property value with this loan. Borrowing more than 80% of the property value will come with lenders mortgage insurance (LMI).
  • Choice Package. You can include your NAB Defence Force Home Loan in a Choice Package, which allows you to combine your NAB home loan, credit card and insurance policies into one package that can save you money.
  • Split options. You can split your loan into fixed and variable portions to help safeguard your finances while taking advantage of low interest rates.

What fees and charges come with this loan?

The fees associated with this loan depend on the loan option you choose, but look below to see the rates that may be applicable.

  • Application fees: $0.
  • Monthly fee. $395 per month.

Eligibility criteria

The NAB Defence Force Home Loan is designed to assist current and former Australian Defence Force members and their families. You need to have served within the previous two years before applying for the Defence Home Ownership Assistance Scheme and you also need to have completed a qualifying period of service and accrued a service credit. To be eligible for this loan you need to be able to meet strict requirements regarding a number of factors which are explained in our guide to the Defence Force Home Loan Scheme.

  • Service credits - You must retain sufficient service credit to support ongoing monthly subsidy payments.
  • Service term - There's a reasonable expectation that you will continue to serve for another 12 months at least.
  • Investment properties - You cannot have bought a home, to live in or as an investment, while serving.
  • Max credits - A maximum of 48 months service credits may be exchanged for a lump sum at the tier 1 level.
  • Eligibility - You are not entitled to a lump sum if you bought a residential property before you were given the Subsidy Certificate that is used as a basis for the lump sum request.

How to apply

To apply for a NAB Defence Force Home Loan, you need to take the following steps:

  • Qualify and accrue service credit
  • Apply for a Subsidy Certificate. This certificate takes about five business days to process.
  • Take your Subsidy Certificate to NAB and decide on a loan option that suits your needs.
  • When you apply with NAB you will need to provide ID, financial information including debts, assets and income, residential status and your Subsidy Certificate.
  • After your home loan is settled and drawn, NAB will advise the Defence Force of the home loan balance and you need to submit a Subsidy Authorisation Request Form.
  • The Defence Force Home Owner Assistance Scheme will then calculate your subsidy and lump sum payments if applicable and you will then receive a letter with the payment details.
  • You will then start receiving the subsidy amount directly into your home loan each month.

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    September 9, 2018

    What’s the minimum deposit required? Can the application be made online?

      September 9, 2018

      Hi Darren,

      Thank you for getting in touch with Finder.

      The minimum deposit is 5% of the property’s purchasing price for principal & interest owner occupied home loans.

      Currently, you may send your enquiry online on NAB’s official page. Once you completely fill up the form on the said enquiry page, they will then get back to you to discuss your query or application. They also recommend that you speak to their lending expert or a mortgage broker regarding your home loan application.

      I hope this helps.

      Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any other enquiries.

      Thank you and have a wonderful day!


    Default Gravatar
    April 29, 2017

    I served 7.5 years, & was eligible when westpac had it but never used it. How will I go now?

      May 1, 2017

      Hi Dean,

      Thanks for your question.

      Kindly note that this home loan is designed to assist current and former Australian Defence Force members and their families. You need to have served within the previous two years before applying for the Defence Home Ownership Assistance Scheme and you also need to have completed a qualifying period of service and accrued a service credit.

      Other eligibility criteria apply. You can check our guide above on how to apply for this loan.

      When you are ready, and after checking the details of this home loan, including its terms and conditions, you can proceed with your application by clicking the ‘go to site’ button above.


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    September 27, 2016

    Hi, I was wondering if the NAB defence loan, when used as a construction loan, allows redraws? I ask this because I would like to apply on my first subsidy cert for the lump sum, redraw the amount into the offset account, so I can have the lump sum working against the interest from day one. This will allow the monthly dhoas amount to be calculated on the largest amount possible once the final subsidy cert is submitted.


      September 29, 2016

      Hi Tom,

      Thank you for contacting Finder. We are a financial comparison website and general information service we are not mortgage experts and don’t offer any of the products or services on our website.

      If you have chosen the “variable rate” for your NAB Defence Force Home Loan, then the redraw facility will be allowed for this loan. You can get access to additional repayments you’ve made on your loan which is a minimum of $2,000. Otherwise, if you have selected the “fixed rate”, then the redraw feature may not be allowed.


    Default Gravatar
    April 15, 2016

    How much is the redraw fee? I couldn’t find it in the NAB website. Thanks.

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      April 18, 2016

      Hi Nav,

      Thanks for getting in touch.

      I can confirm that there is no redraw fee with the NAB Defence Force Home Loan.

      Kind regards,

    Default Gravatar
    October 25, 2015

    Can a family guarantee ( securing the deposit shortfall) be used for a portion of the defence home loan? Thank you

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      October 26, 2015

      Hi Lynne,

      Thanks for your enquiry.

      For the NAB Defence Force Home Loan, I can confirm that you can take out a family guarantee to complete the deposit.

      However, keep in mind that if the family who is willing to act as guarantor for the home loan has a home loan with a different financial institution, they will need to refinance it to NAB. This is because NAB will need to hold the title as security for the loan.


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