How You Can Use a Debit Card to Access Your Offset Account

Offset accounts can potentially save you thousands in interest over the life of your loan, and can be accessed with a debit card

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If your loan has an offset account attached to it, it may be worth asking your banking institution if there is a debit card you can link to it. People with offset accounts linked to their savings accounts or debit cards could have the ability to withdraw cash.

An offset account consists of any mortgage overpayments, which are in excess of the scheduled repayments and charged interest. If you have an overpayment, it will be transferred to the offset account instead of coming off the mortgage. This will mean that the funds can be withdrawn any time by the borrower. If the borrower does not make a payment in a month, then the funds will be withdrawn from the overpayment account.

Interest is not usually charged on the balance and the mortgage interest will be higher than it is on the savings account. In addition, the interest is also going to be free of any tax obligations because technically the interest on a mortgage has no tax relief.

Overpayment can take place via direct payment into the mortgage account, which can then be withdrawn via redraw privileges. These privileges give the borrower the ability to automatically withdraw overpayments from the mortgage. Unlike the offset account, a borrower who exercises the rights to redraw may incur a fee, which may utterly reduce the advantage of a good interest rate when money is put into the mortgage.

It is worth keeping in mind that some banks and credit unions place a minimum withdrawal amount on an offset account. Make sure to check with your bank first.

About fixed rate home loans with 100% offset accounts

Did you know?

Overpayment is considered a type of savings. However, the funds can be instantly accessed at any time in an offset account.

Transaction account debit card access

One significant and noticeable difference with a transaction account debit card is that it often facilitates overdraft. This means the borrower could take an unapproved overdraft, which accompanies a fee and a high interest rate.

One single transaction on this account may cost the cardholder a high fee and triggered penalties because it will appear as if the user has reached the overdraft limit. Offset account holders don't have to experience this since there are no overdraft facilities. If the cardholder runs out of funds, the debit card transaction is turned down.

Offset accounts can be added to your variable rate mortgage loan. It connects to a normal savings account and utilizes your account balance to offset the balance on your mortgage loan. You will pay less interest on your home mortgage loan when you have more funds in your connected savings account.

How offset accounts perform

When you buy a home, the lender will usually charge interest on the entire loan balance. When you add the offset feature to your home loan, it changes this scenario. Rather than having to pay interest on the entire home loan balance, the lender subtracts the interest on the home loan balance from the funds you have in your connected savings account.

Mortgage offset accounts

Read on to find out how Mary and Steve accessed their overpayments to budget for a baby

Case study

Title

Mary and Steve have a home loan balance of $340,000 and have built up a considerable amount of $7,500 in their connected offset savings account. They have been over paying their loan for a few years now and are expecting their first baby in a few months.

Whilst preparing for the arrival of the newborn by fitting out the spare room, they have had the option of spending on their credit card or using their offset account Visa Debit card. They opt to use the debit card and withdrawn from their offset account.

This way they can reduce the amount of interest paid, i.e. 20.24% p.a. on their credit card as opposed to 5.72% p.a. on their home loan balance. Once the room has been fitted, they have spent $3,500, leaving $4,000 left in the offset account.

This now means they are only paying interest on their new loan amount of $336,000.

Compare home loans with offset accounts

Rates last updated January 17th, 2020
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Loan purpose
Offset account
Loan type
Repayment type
Your filter criteria do not match any product
Name Product Interest Rate (p.a.) Comp Rate^ (p.a.) Application Fee Ongoing Fees Max LVR Monthly Payment Short Description
Greater Bank Ultimate Home Loan - Discounted 1 Year Fixed LVR ≤90% ($150K+ Owner Occupier)
2.79%
4.04%
$0
$395 p.a.
90%
Get one of the lowest fixed mortgage rates on the market plus a 100% offset account. Available with just a 10% deposit. Guarantor option available. NSW, QLD and ACT residents only.
Virgin Reward Me Variable Home Loan - LVR <= 80% ($500k to $750k Owner Occupier, P&I)
3.18%
3.32%
$0
$10 monthly ($120 p.a.)
80%
This flexible, competitive variable rate mortgage comes with a 100% offset account and redraw facility.
Community First Accelerator Home Loan Package - $250k and over 2 Year Discounted Variable (Owner Occupier, P&I)
3.24%
4.14%
$600
$395 p.a.
95%
A package loan that offers discounts and a 100% offset account.
AMP Professional Package Variable Rate Home Loan - $500,000 to $749,999 (Owner Occupier, P&I)
3.09%
3.49%
$0
$349 p.a.
90%
Get a sharp rate plus package discounts and a 100% offset account.
Easy Street Standard Variable Special Home Loan
2.95%
2.99%
$500
$0 p.a.
95%
This mortgage combines a very sharp interest rate with a 100% offset account and it's available with a 5% deposit.
Community First Accelerator Home Loan Package - $250k and over 2 Year Discounted Variable (Investor, P&I)
3.54%
4.44%
$600
$395 p.a.
95%
A package loan that offers discounts and a 100% offset account.
Virgin Reward Me Variable Home Loan - LVR <= 80% ($750k+ Owner Occupier, P&I)
3.14%
3.28%
$0
$10 monthly ($120 p.a.)
80%
Get this loan with a 20% deposit and access a 100% offset account to save on interest.
Easy Street Fixed Home Loan - 2 Year (Owner Occupier, P&I)
2.99%
3.74%
$500
$0 p.a.
95%
Enjoy 2 year fixed rate with no ongoing fee and a 100% offset account. Available with a 5% deposit.
Pepper Money Essential Prime Alt Doc Home Loan - LVR up to 55%
3.69%
3.88%
$599
$10 monthly ($120 p.a.)
55%
A competitive rate home loan with an offset facility for self-employed borrowers.
Adelaide Bank SmartFix Home Loan - 2 Year Fixed Rate (Owner Occupier, P&I)
2.89%
3.26%
$375
$15 monthly ($180 p.a.)
95%
Take advantage of a locked rate for two years and a full offset account.
Newcastle Permanent Building Society Premium Plus Package Home Loan - New Customer Offer Discount 1 ($150k+ Owner Occupier, P&I)
3.19%
3.59%
$0
$395 p.a.
90%
New borrowers or refinancers can get a discounted rate with this package loan. $2,500 cashback for first home buyers (owner occupier loans with P&I repayments, borrowing $250K or more).
Greater Bank Ultimate Home Loan - Construction Loan (Owner Occupier, P&I)
3.71%
4.12%
$0
$395 p.a.
95%
Build your new home with a variable interest rate and enjoy a 100% offset account. 5% deposit option available.
Newcastle Permanent Building Society Premium Plus Package Home Loan - Tier 1: below $500k (Owner Occupier, P&I)
4.02%
4.40%
$0
$395 p.a.
95%
No application fee and 100% offset account. $2,500 cashback for first home buyers (owner occupier loans with P&I repayments, borrowing $250K or more).
ANZ Breakfree Package Home Loan - 2 Year Fixed (Owner Occupier, P&I)
2.98%
4.45%
$0
$395 p.a.
90%
This 2 year fixed ANZ Breakfree Package rate comes with package discount and product bundle. Refinancers switching to this loan could get a cashback from $1,200 up to $3,500 depending on their loan amount (terms and conditions apply).
Virgin Reward Me Variable Home Loan - LVR <=80% ($500k to $750k Owner Occupier, IO)
3.74%
3.76%
$0
$10 monthly ($120 p.a.)
80%
A variable rate home loan with no application fees.
Easy Street Fixed Home Loan - 3 Year (Owner Occupier, P&I)
3.09%
3.69%
$500
$0 p.a.
95%
Enjoy 3 year fixed rate with no ongoing fee.

Compare up to 4 providers

By utilising a debit card transaction account in conjunction with your offset account, you can get access to your funds when you need them. Basically you are paying interest on the total outstanding minus the amount you have in savings. The incentive is to save more.

Home Loan Offers

Important Information*
Logo for St.George Basic Home Loan - LVR 60% to 80% (Owner Occupier, P&I)
St.George Basic Home Loan - LVR 60% to 80% (Owner Occupier, P&I)

Online only cashback offer: Refinancers borrowing $250,000 or more can get a $4,000 cashback for their first application (Other terms, conditions and exclusions apply). Buyers and refinancers can get this competitive variable interest rate. Application fee waived for loans above $150,000.

Logo for UBank UHomeLoan Variable Rate - Discount offer for Owner Occupiers, P&I Borrowing over $200,000
UBank UHomeLoan Variable Rate - Discount offer for Owner Occupiers, P&I Borrowing over $200,000

Take advantage of a low-fee mortgage with a special interest rate of just 2.84% p.a. and a 2.84% p.a. comparison rate.

Logo for loans.com.au Smart Home Loan - (Owner Occupier, P&I)
loans.com.au Smart Home Loan - (Owner Occupier, P&I)

Get one of the lowest variable interest rates on the market and pay 0 application or ongoing fees.

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