Media Release

News Alert: 15 lenders announce owner-occupied variable home loan rate hikes

  • Bank of Queensland and CUA the latest to announce home loan increases
  • Biggest increase was 0.20% by 4 lenders: Westpac, Macquarie Bank, Citibank and ME Bank
  • Borrowers urged to shop around to receive a Christmas bonus from your lender

November 5, 2015, Sydney – Comments by Bessie Hassan, Consumer Advocate at one of Australia's biggest comparison websites finder.com.au:

"Lenders are continuing to follow the big banks’ lead as more have announced out-of-cycle variable home loan rate hikes. We have seen 15 lenders monitored by finder.com.au that have so far announced variable rate owner-occupier home loan increases of up to 0.20 percentage points, with one lender’s move already reportedly effective (Citibank).

“Bank of Queensland and CUA were the latest lenders to announce variable rate increases to its owner-occupied home loans yesterday (November 4, 2015), with their standard variable home loan rates set to rise by 0.18 and 0.13 percentage points respectively. CUA also announced a 0.14 percentage point drop to one of its home loan products while raising eight others.

“So far, the biggest increase was 0.20 percentage points by four lenders: Westpac, Macquarie Bank, Citibank and ME Bank, while the average rise was 0.17 percentage points. This will add an extra $33 per month to a $300,000 mortgage, as well as putting more pressure on many households who are preparing for the most expensive time of year at Christmas.

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“While borrowers will feel the majority of the pain, some savings accounts have also moved over the past month. Two banks – Bankwest and Citibank – dropped some of their savings account rates by as much as 0.25 percentage points. Meanwhile AMP Bank and Citibank increased some of their rates by as much as 0.45 percentage points, which is great news for these savers.

“It’s clear that the Reserve Bank is having less of an impact on interest rate movements so there’s no point for borrowers to wait for a cash rate cut and expect lenders to follow. However, the silver lining is that there are hundreds of home loans out there and many smaller lenders are offering very competitive deals. For instance, the cheapest variable rate home loan on finder.com.au/home-loans is 3.79 percent by Mortgage House (12-month discounted rate). Now is the time to compare home loans, ask your lender for a discount or switch to a better deal before the rate hikes take effect.”

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Disclaimer

The information in this release is accurate as of the date published, but rates, fees and other product features may have changed. Please see updated product information on finder.com.au's review pages for the current correct values.

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More than 3 million Australians turn to finder.com.au every month to save money, time and make important life choices. We compare virtually everything from credit cards, phone plans, health insurance, travel deals and much more.

Our free service is 100% independently-owned by two Australians: Fred Schebesta and Frank Restuccia. Since launching in 2006, we’ve helped our users make more than 17 million decisions.

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