Personal Loans for Migrants

There are still personal loan options for you if you’ve just migrated to Australia.

Migrating to Australia, whether permanently or temporarily, can be a daunting experience. You might have to learn a new language and you might be faced with cultural challenges, so the last thing you want is to run out of options when it comes to finance. In Australia, while you might not be able to access all types of finance if you’ve just immigrated, you are still eligible for a range of personal loans.

What are personal loans for migrants?

These are loans that can be accessed by migrants. They are not usually loans that are specifically designed for migrants, but rather are loans that that have flexible eligible criteria that allow migrants to apply.

Personal loans migrants may be able to apply for

There are a number of banks and lenders in Australia who consider applications for personal loans from migrants.

Rates last updated November 15th, 2018
Name Product Interest Rate (p.a.) Comparison Rate (p.a.) Min Loan Amount Loan Term Monthly Service Fee Application Fee Product Description Monthly Repayment
ANZ Fixed Rate Personal Loan
12.45% (fixed)
1 to 7 years
You'll receive a fixed rate of 12.45% p.a.
Apply for up to $50,000 to use for a variety of purposes without needing to add security. Available to self-employed applicants.
Westpac Unsecured Personal Loan
12.99% (fixed)
1 to 7 years
You'll receive a fixed rate of 12.99% p.a.
Benefit from the security of a fixed rate with the flexibility of additional repayments. Existing Westpac customers may qualify for discounts. Note: $250 establishment fee waived if you apply before 20 December 2018.

Compare up to 4 providers

Compare personal loans available to migrants

  • Bank of Melbourne: Must be 18 years or older. Minimum of two years left on your visa when you apply.
  • BankSA: Must be 18 years or older. Minimum of two years left on your visa when you apply.
  • Westpac: Must be 18 years or older. Must hold one of the listed visas.
  • Fair Go Finance: Must earn a minimum of $500 per week.

Compare migrants personal loan options

So you can have all the tools at your disposal, these are the eligibility requirements for most Australian brands that offer personal loans to migrants. Keep in mind lenders will still consider applications on a case-by-case basis.

BrandEligibility requirementsLender requirements for Migrant personal loans
  • 18 years old
  • Earn $15,000 p.a.
  • Temporary subclass work visas e.g. skilled and business visas accepted
  • Working holiday visas not accepted
Bank of Melbourne
  • 18 years old
  • Have an Australian residential address
  • Sub Class Visa number 100 103 115 124 132 143 151 155 176 186 187 188 189 190 457 STSOL MLTSSL 487 489 801 835 856 857 858 887 888 890 892 893 are acceptable.
  • Proof of taxable income
  • 18 years old
  • Have an Australian residential address
  • Sub Class Visa number 100 103 115 124 132 143 151 155 176 186 187 188 189 190 457 STSOL MLTSSL 487 489 801 835 856 857 858 887 888 890 892 893 are acceptable.
  • Proof of taxable income
Commonwealth Bank
  • 18 years old
  • Earn $14,000 p.a.
  • Reside in Australia
  • 457 working visas are accepted
  • 18 years old
  • Reside in Australia
  • Accepts working class temporary resident visa's ie. 457
Fair Go Finance
  • Earn $500 per week
  • Can be from a combination of wage/eligible Centrelink payments
  • Be permanent resident or Australian Citizen or 457 VISA.
  • 18 years old
  • Have an Australian residential address
  • Minimum two years left on your visa when you apply
  • Proof of taxable income
  • 18 years old
  • Have an Australian residential address
  • Have confirmed employment
  • Hold one of the following accepted visas

How do personal loans for migrants work?

Personal loans for migrants can be offered by traditional banks and credit unions, and by smaller lenders. As a migrant’s lending risk cannot be determined in the same way as an Australian resident’s, due to the fact that they don’t have a credit file, the lender will use other eligibility criteria.

This may include requiring the migrant to have confirmed employment in Australia, confirmed minimum income, holding an Australian bank account, and holding an Australian visa.

If you are on a temporary visa, the length of the loan will not extend past the length of your visa, For example, if you have a two years left on a 457 Visa, then you will only be able to secure a two year loan.

Banks often have a department dedicated to migrant banking. It may be wise to check this before coming into Australia, so you know which bank to approach when you arrive.

Types of personal loans available for migrants

Migrants are able to access a few different types of personal loans when they move to Australia. Depending on the type of visa you hold, your income and your financial situation, you might be able to apply for the following:

  • Car loan. This is a typical loan for new migrants, as a car is often needed to be purchased soon after moving. Most lenders will approve car loans for migrants who hold a 457 Visa, depending on their individual financial situation.
  • Secured personal loan. You can use other assets, such as jewellery or property, in order to access finance. This is referred to as a secured personal loan, with the difference between this and a car loan being that you are not as restricted in the way you use your loan amount.
  • Unsecured personal loan. An unsecured personal loan does not require you to use an asset as security for the loan, although this means the loan usually comes with higher interest rate and fees. Unsecured personal loans may also have stricter eligibility criteria, although some lenders still may approve these loans to migrants.
  • Payday loan. A payday loan is a small, short term loan, usually between $100 and $2,000, with loan terms of between 16 days and four months. As the loan amounts are small, lenders usually have more flexible lending criteria with these loans, and so you may be able to access these as a migrant.

How to compare personal loans for migrants

  • Loan terms and amount. Lenders will offer varying lengths for loan terms, and also different minimum and maximum loan amounts, so make sure what’s on offer will meet your borrowing needs.
  • Fees. You will be charged various fees for the loan that can add considerable to the overall cost. Some of these fees may be ongoing, such as monthly fees, and some may be one-off, such as loan establishment fees, so calculate how much you are likely to pay and if you can find a loan where you will pay less.
  • Loan purpose. Personal loan products are designed for different purposes, and you’ll need to ensure that the purpose you intend for the loan amount is permissible. For instance, many lenders will not allow you to use any money you borrow for a car loan for any other purpose than to finance a vehicle.
  • Repayment flexibility. Most lenders will let you choose between weekly, fortnightly or monthly repayments to line up with your pay frequency. You might also want to check if your lender will let you make additional repayments without penalty, or make lump sum payments, or even pay back your loan early, as this could save you considerable interest.
  • Additional loan features. Some lenders may also offer you additional features with your loan product, such as discounts on insurance or a redraw facility.
  • The lender. The reputability of the lender should also be a factor in your decision. If anything goes wrong over the course of your loan you’ll want to be sure the lender can be easily contacted, and that they’ll be able to provide you with assistance.

Things to avoid

There are a wide range of lenders, including the major banks, who offer personal loans for migrants. You should avoid ‘dodgy’ lenders who claim that you will not be able to find a loan with other lenders, and then offer you products with higher rates and fees. Avoid applying for any loan products without doing your research and comparing your options first, because you may be unaware of the loan market in Australia and could sign up to a product that isn’t competitive.

Further Reading: Credit cards for temporary residents

Picture: Shutterstock

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Personal Loan Offers

Important Information*
HSBC Personal Loan

You'll receive a fixed rate between 8.5% p.a. and 16.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
An unsecured personal loan with a tailored, fixed rate where you can make additional and early repayments without penalty.

Citi Personal Loan Plus

You'll receive a variable rate between 8.99% p.a. and 17.99% p.a. (9.96% p.a. to 18.91% p.a. comparison rate) based on your risk profile
A credit limit up to $75,000 that you can continue to draw down over terms up to 5 years.

Latitude Personal Loan (Unsecured)

You'll receive a fixed rate between 13.99% p.a. and 29.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
Apply for what you need from $3,000 and use it for a range of purposes. Flexible repayments options.

CUA Unsecured Fixed Rate Personal Loan

You'll receive a fixed rate of 11.99% p.a.
An unsecured loan from $5,000 with no monthly or establishment fees and flexible repayments.

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4 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    AnnNovember 30, 2017

    Hai, im under 457 visa for 4 years as a full time permanent worker and i completed 7 months here . Now my family is in struggling with finance, so whether I will get any loan from here.

    • finder Customer Care
      MayDecember 12, 2017Staff

      Hi Ann,

      Thank you for your inquiry and sorry for the delay. Just to confirm that we’re not able to recommend a specific lender to you as we are comparison website.

      Nonetheless, there are actually loans available to non-residents like you and they are listed on this page. Although I am not sure whether you’ll be approved for a loan or not, it would be best to review the details of the loan product and eligibility criteria, then contact the lender to discuss your chances of approval.

      Hope this helps.


  2. Default Gravatar
    MaajedMay 17, 2017

    I am a new migrant and don’t have a job at the moment in australia. But my financial history is good back home and I am still under the payment of my company in India. Is there a possible way to get a car loan in Australia. I am looking maximum loan amount of 50% of the car value… Please suggest

    • finder Customer Care
      HaroldMay 18, 2017Staff

      Hi Maajed,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      Unfortunately, we cannot recommend what is best for you. Our company finder.com.au is a financial comparison website and general information service designed to help consumers to make a better decision. Please note we do not represent any company we feature on our pages.

      Although car loans are usually restricted to PR and citizens, migrants on a the 457 may have a better chance at being approved for a car loans so long as they meet certain financial conditions. You may want to check the available options here.

      I hope this information has helped.


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