Secured loans vs unsecured

Secured vs unsecured personal loans

Not sure whether a secured or unsecured personal loan is right for you? We show you the differences to help you make the right choice.

A personal loan can help you take your next step if you don’t have ready finance. Whether you want to buy a car or undertake home renovations, you’re likely to find a number of different lenders and loans to choose from.

If you’re looking to purchase an asset, or you already have one, you may be considering whether a secured or unsecured personal loan is a better option for you. We break down the differences in the guide below.

What is the difference between secured and unsecured personal loans?

The main difference between these two loans is that with a secured personal loan you have to provide an asset as a guarantee, while you don’t with an unsecured personal loan. If you default on a secured personal loan, the lender can repossess the asset and sell it to recoup its losses. The asset is usually one you are purchasing with the funds you are borrowing from the lender, but it can also be an asset you already own.

Secured and unsecured personal loans you can apply for

Find both secured and unsecured loan options by clicking through each of the tabs and compare what's available.

IMB Secured Personal Loan

IMB Secured Personal Loan

6.89 % p.a.

fixed rate

7.24 % p.a.

comparison rate

  • No monthly account fees
  • Extra repayments OK
  • Borrow up to $60,000
Security Logo

100% confidential application

IMB Secured Personal Loan

A competitive fixed rate loan available from $2,000 that you can use for any worthwile purpose. Security required.

  • Interest rate: 6.89% p.a.
  • Comparison rate: 7.24% p.a.
  • Interest rate type: Fixed
  • Application fee: $250
  • Minimum loan amount: $2,000
  • Maximum loan amount: $60,000
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Promoted
Rates last updated September 19th, 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
IMB Secured Personal Loan
6.89% (fixed)
7.24%
$2,000
1 to 5 years
$0
$250
You'll receive a fixed rate of 6.89% p.a.
Benefit from this competitive rate by securing the loan with a vehicle up to 6 years old. Use this flexible loan for any purpose.
Latitude Personal Loan (Secured)
From 12.99% (fixed)
14.2%
$3,000
2 to 7 years
$13
$250 (Loans under $4000 - $140)
You'll receive a fixed rate between 12.99% p.a. and 28.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
Lock in a competitive variable rate when you offer security. Loan can be used for any purpose and repayments are flexible.
Loans.com.au - New Car Loan
5.44% (fixed)
5.99%
$5,000
3 to 5 years
$0
$400
You'll receive a fixed rate of 5.44% p.a.
Finance a new car and benefit from features such as fast approval, no ongoing fees and an optional balloon payment.
Stratton Finance New Car Loan
From 5.29% (fixed)
6.56%
$18,000
1 to 7 years
$8.90
$459.20
You'll receive a fixed or variable rate depending on the lender you are approved with
Apply for up to $100,000 and use cash or trade in a vehicle to use as a deposit. Optional balloon payment available.
IMB New Car Loan
5.89% (fixed)
6.24%
$2,000
1 to 7 years
$0
$250
You'll receive a fixed rate of 5.89% p.a.
A low minimum borrowing amount of $2,000 that you can use to purchase a new car or one up to two years old.
People's Choice CU Discounted Personal Loan
From 7.99% (fixed)
8.35%
$10,000
1 to 10 years
$0
$250
You'll receive a fixed rate of 7.99% p.a.
Secure this loan with a vehicle up to 7 years old and benefit from long loan terms up to 10 years and pre-approval.
Latitude Car Loan
From 6.99% (fixed)
8.1%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$10
$295
You'll receive a fixed rate between 6.99% p.a. and 14.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
Finance a new or used car up with loans from $5,000 and benefit from flexible repayments.
St.George Secured Personal Loan - Fixed Rate
From 8.49% (fixed)
9.6%
$3,000
1 to 5 years
$12
$195
You'll receive a fixed rate from 8.49% p.a. based on the value of your car
Get a competitive rate and apply for a larger loan up to $80,000 when you attach a new or used car as security to the loan.
Beyond Bank Low Rate Car Loan
From 5.69% (fixed)
5.97%
$25,000
1 to 7 years
$0
$175
You'll recive a fixed rate of 5.69% p.a.
Take advantage of a competitive rate, pre-approval and no early repayment fees when you finance a car under two years old.
RACV Personal Loan
From 6.99% (fixed)
7.55%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$0
$399
You'll receive a fixed rate of 6.99% p.a.
A secured personal loan with a competitive rate to help you fund a range of purposes. Benefit from no ongoing fees.
RACV New Car Loans
From 5.99% (fixed)
6.55%
$15,000
1 to 7 years
$0
$399
You'll receive a fixed rate of 5.99% p.a.
A larger loan of $15,000 or more to help you buy a new or used car. 5-hour pre approval available and no ongoing fees.
MyState Secured Personal Loan
From 7.99% (variable)
8.96%
$10,000
1 to 10 years
$10
$200
You'll receive a variable rate of 7.99% p.a.
A secured loan up to $75,000 that you can have up to years to repay. Early repayments and redraw facility available.
People's Choice CU Car Loan
From 5.64% (fixed)
5.99%
$20,000
1 to 10 years
$0
$250
You'll receive a fixed rate of 5.64% p.a.
A lower interest rate when you're borrowing over $20,000. Benefit from pre-approval and no monthly fees.

Compare up to 4 providers

Harmoney Unsecured Personal Loan

Harmoney Unsecured Personal Loan

From

6.99 % p.a.

fixed rate

From

7.69 % p.a.

comparison rate

  • Borrow up to $70,000
  • 3 and 5 years terms
  • No hidden fees
Security Logo

100% confidential application

Harmoney Unsecured Personal Loan

An unsecured personal loan up to $70,000. You'll received a tailored interest rate between 6.99% p.a. and 28.21% p.a. based on your risk profile.

  • Interest rate from: 6.99% p.a.
  • Comparison rate: 7.69% p.a.
  • Interest rate type: Fixed
  • Application fee: $500 (Upfront fee)
  • Minimum loan amount: $5,000
  • Maximum loan amount: $70,000
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Promoted
Rates last updated September 19th, 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
Harmoney Unsecured Personal Loan
From 6.99% (fixed)
7.69%
$5,000
3 to 5 years
$0
$500 (Upfront fee)
You'll receive a fixed rate between 6.99% p.a. and 28.21% p.a. based on your risk profile.
Apply for a loan up to $70,000 and repay your loan over 3 or 5 year terms.
SocietyOne Unsecured Personal Loan
From 7.5% (fixed)
9.51%
$5,000
2 to 5 years
$0
3% (of loan amount)
You'll receive a fixed rate between 7.5% p.a. and 19.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
A loan from $5,000 to use for a range of purposes. Benefit from no ongoing fees and no early repayment fee.
Westpac Unsecured Personal Loan
12.99% (fixed)
14.14%
$4,000
1 to 7 years
$12
$250
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.
HSBC Personal Loan
From 9.5% (fixed)
10.06%
$5,000
1 to 5 years
$5
$150
You'll receive a fixed rate between 9.5% p.a. and 15.99% 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.
RateSetter 3-Years Personal Loan
From 8.42% (fixed)
10.97%
$2,001
0.5 to 5 years
$0
$220
You'll receive a fixed rate from 8.42% p.a. based on your risk profile
A flexible loan with amounts from $2,001 and terms starting from 6 months. Interest and comparison rates calculated for a loan term of 5 years.
Latitude Personal Loan (Unsecured)
From 13.99% (fixed)
15.19%
$3,000
2 to 7 years
$13
$250 (Loans under $4000 - $140)
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.
Citi Personal Loan Plus
From 8.99% (variable)
9.96%
$5,000
3 to 5 years
$10
$199
You'll receive a variable rate between 8.99% p.a. and 17.99% p.a. 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 Low Rate Personal Loan (Unsecured)
10.99% (fixed)
12.21%
$20,000
2 to 7 years
$13
$250
You'll receive a fixed rate of 10.99% p.a.
A secured or unsecured loan available to homeowners with a large minimum borrowing amount of . Benefit from flexible repayments and fast approval.
Sydney CU Special Offer Unsecured Personal Loan
From 7.99% (variable)
7.99%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$0
$0
You’ll receive an introductory rate of 7.99% p.a.
An unsecured personal loan up to $30,000 and no annual or monthly fees. Introductory rate and waived application fee until 31 October 2018.
CUA Unsecured Fixed Rate Personal Loan
11.99% (fixed)
11.99%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$0
$0
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.
NAB Personal Loan Unsecured Variable Rate
Headline rate 12.69% (variable)
13.56%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$10
$150
You'll receive a variable rate based on your risk profile. The headline rate is 12.69% p.a.
An unsecured loan up to $55,000 you can use for a range of purposes. Benefit from fee-free additional repayments and a redraw facility.
NOW FINANCE Personal Loans
From 8.95% (fixed)
10.56%
$5,000
1.5 to 7 years
$13
$495 (Based on $10,000)
You'll receive a fixed rate between 8.95% p.a. and 16.95% p.a. based on your risk profile
Apply for loans from $5,000 and get a dedicated loan manager. No security required.
Pepper Money Unsecured Fixed Rate Personal Loan
From 9.99% (fixed)
9.99%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$0
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate between 9.99% p.a. and 29.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
A loan from $50,000 to use for a range of purposes. Benefit from no monthly or application fees.
MyState Unsecured Personal Loan
12.99% (variable)
16.42%
$3,000
1 to 7 years
$10
$200
You'll receive a variable rate of 12.99% p.a.
Apply for up to $50,000 and make additional repayments at any time without penalty.
People's Choice CU Discounted Personal Loan
From 7.99% (fixed)
8.35%
$10,000
1 to 10 years
$0
$250
You'll receive a fixed rate of 7.99% p.a.
Secure this loan with a vehicle up to 7 years old and benefit from long loan terms up to 10 years and pre-approval.
St.George Unsecured Personal Loan - Fixed Rate
From 12.99% (fixed)
14.06%
$2,000
1 to 5 years
$12
$195
You'll receive a fixed rate between 12.99% p.a. and 19.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
A low minimum borrowing amount of $2,000 to fund a range of purposes.

Compare up to 4 providers

What kind of assets can be used as security?

Lenders are willing to use all kind of assets that hold value as guarantees for loans. Whether you are looking to purchase one of the following items or already own one, you might be able to use it as security for a loan:

  • Vehicles. This includes new and used cars, motorbikes, boats, caravans and even jet skis.
  • Property. If you own a property outright or hold equity in a mortgaged property, you can use it as security for a loan.
  • Term deposits. If you hold a term deposit account with a lender, they may be willing to use the amount as a guarantee for a loan.
  • High-cost assets. Some lenders will accept high-cost jewellery, fine art and other items as security for loans.

What type of loan is better for you?

If you’re unsure what type of personal loan you should be applying for, here are some considerations to keep in mind:

  • If you’re buying a vehicle. The age, cost and type of vehicle will have a bearing on whether you can or should get a secured personal loan or whether an unsecured loan will be a better option for you. Some lenders will only accept new vehicles (generally less than two years old) as a guarantee. If you want an older car, it may need to pass a vehicle inspection check and still need to be under a certain age, usually seven years.
  • If you want to use the loan amount for various purposes. Lenders offering secured loans tend to place restrictions on the use of the loan amount. For instance, if you are taking out a secured car loan but also want to buy some furniture, the lender may not let you borrow more than the cost of the car.
  • If you aren’t looking to purchase an asset. You will need to already own the asset you want to use as security. While this is a less common form of secured personal loan, it is an option offered by some lenders.

How you can compare secured and unsecured personal loans

While both types of loans are a viable way for you to finance a new purchase, you can find the option that better suits your needs by comparing them to one another. Here are some main points of comparison:

  • Interest rates. As secured personal loans are less risky for lenders, they tend to come with lower interest rates. You can find fixed and variable rates for both secured and unsecured loans.
  • Fees. You won’t find a great difference in fees between the two loan types. Expect establishment fees for both types of loans, although you can find lenders that don’t charge any fees to set up the loan. Some loans come with monthly fees, but these are not standard, so make sure to compare so you know your loan is competitive.
  • Flexibility of repayments. The difference lies in whether the loan is fixed or variable. If you apply for a fixed rate loan, you are more likely to find penalties for extra repayments and repaying your loan early. Variable rate loans are less likely to have these penalties. Compare lenders to find the most competitive option.
  • Loan terms. For both secured and unsecured loans, you will generally find terms of between one and five years for fixed rate loans and one and seven years for variable rate loans.
  • How you can use the funds. If you apply for an unsecured loan, you can generally use the funds for whatever purpose you want. Secured loans tend to come with more restrictions. For instance, if you’re taking out the loan to pay for a car, the lender may require you to use the entire loan amount to pay for the cost of the vehicle.

What to consider before you apply

  • Will you be able to afford the repayments? If you’re opting for a secured personal loan, the lender will be able to repossess your asset if you can’t afford the repayments. If you are considering an unsecured personal loan, keep in mind the interest rate is likely to be higher and so your ongoing repayments will be more costly.
  • How much flexibility do you want with your loan amount? If you want to use your loan to make a large purchase as well as a number of other items, check whether this is allowed by your secured loan lender. If you can’t find a secured loan that allows for this, you may need to apply for an unsecured personal loan.
  • Do you want a fixed or variable rate loan? Depending on the type of loan you want to take out, you may find more fixed or more variable rate loan options. For instance, if you’re considering a secured car loan, you may find more fixed rate loans than variable rate loans. It’s important to compare all available options before you apply.

The points will also come back to comparison – which option is best for you? The only way to work it out is to consider your situation, your needs and the loan type that is going to work for what you want.

Frequently asked questions

What’s the difference between a secured car loan and an unsecured car loan?

A secured car loan will use the car you purchase as security for the loan in case you default. With an unsecured car loan, you still use the funds you borrow to purchase the car, but the vehicle isn’t attached to the loan as security.

Is VET-FEE HELP loan secured or unsecured?

Your student loan, obtained through the VET-FEE HELP loan program, is unsecured.

Is there a difference between a secured loan and a secured car loan?

Yes. A car loan is a type of secured loan specifically used to purchase a vehicle. A secured loan is a general type of loan where a number of different assets, including vehicles, can be used as security for the loan.

What’s the difference between a secured home equity loan and a mortgage?

A home equity loan uses the equity you hold in your property as security and usually comes in the form of a revolving line of credit. People often use home equity loans for home renovations. On the other hand, a mortgage is taken out for the purpose of buying property, with the entire property being used as security for the loan.

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Personal Loan Offers

Important Information*
HSBC Personal Loan

You'll receive a fixed rate between 9.5% p.a. and 15.99% 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.

SocietyOne Unsecured Personal Loan

You'll receive a fixed rate between 7.5% p.a. and 19.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
A loan from $5,000 to use for a range of purposes. Benefit from no ongoing fees and no early repayment fee.

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.

Citi Personal Loan Plus

You'll receive a variable rate between 8.99% p.a. and 17.99% p.a. 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.

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