More banks cut rates – for new customers only

More banks cut rates – for new customers only
More banks cut rates – for new customers only

EXPERT OBSERVER

Despite ACCC chair Rod Sims’ recent criticism of the bank practice of charging higher rates to loyal existing borrowers than they do for new business, lenders are rolling out big fixed rate home loan cuts - that apply to new customers only.

In October, many lenders have reserved their biggest rate cuts for the fixed rate home loan market – where rates only apply to new loans. The 2 and 3-year fixed rate market in particular is active right now with plenty of rate cut announcements. 

All of the big four banks have slashed fixed rates in recent weeks. 

From today, 10th October, Commonwealth Bank’s advertised 2 and 3 year (OO, P&I) fixed rates in the “Wealth Package” have been cut to 2.99 per cent pa (Comparison rates from 4.46 per cent pa). 

Commonwealth Bank have now cut two and three-year fixed rates by 0.80 percentage points since June. The RBA has cut the official rate by 0.75 percentage points. Commonwealth Bank’s variable (OO, P&I) advertised home loan rate has come down by 0.57 percentage points in the same period.

ANZ Bank cut two and three-year fixed rates last week by up to 0.30 percentage points. ANZ Bank now boasts 2 and 3-year fixed rates from 2.98 per cent pa (comparison rates from 4.45 per cent pa) with a package deal discount. ANZ cut variable rates last week by 0.14 percentage points. 

NAB have cut their fixed rates by up to 0.40 percentage points (OO, P&I). NAB’s two-year rate is now 2.98 per cent pa (comparison rate 4.47 per cent pa).

Westpac (and subsidiaries) cut fixed rates by up to 1.3 percentage points in September. Westpac’sone-year Premier Advantage (OO, P&I) rate was cut by 0.80 percentage points to 3.29 per cent pa (comparison rate 4.05 per cent pa)

Other lenders have also announced big rate cuts on fixed home loans with more announcements expected in coming days. 

From yesterday, 9th October, ING cut two and three-year fixed rates (OO, P&I) by up to 0.20 per cent pa. ING now has fixed home loan rates starting at 2.89 per cent pa (comparison rate 4.23 per cent pa) and variable rates starting at 3.14 per cent pa (comparison rate 3.17 per cent pa).

There are now 44 two-year fixed rate home loan products (OO, P&I) with advertised headline rates under 3.0 per cent on the InfoChoice database of 145 institutions.

There are now 48 three-year fixed rate home loan products (OO, P&I) with advertised headline rates under 3.0 per cent on the InfoChoice database of 145 institutions.

There are 11 variable rate home loans (OO, P&I) with advertised rates under 3.0 per cent listed by InfoChoice. 

Borrowers can not expect a great deal simply because they have been loyal to a particular institution for many years. 

When lenders announce rate cuts for fixed rate loans, they only apply to new customers. Existing customers continue to pay the fixed rate that applied at the beginning of the loan.

Banks and other lenders are competing with other and constantly trying to win new business.

Fixed rates are clearly now being set with the future in mind. Banks are apparently expecting the RBA to keep rates low well into 2021 and 2022 and that’s why they are setting 2 and 3-year fixed rates at these very low levels.

Borrowers who don’t like their rate are entitled to ask for a better deal and move to a better offer if they don’t get a good deal.

Borrowers need to factor this into their calculations. If rates change, a fixed rate will stay the same until the end of the term.

Vadim Taube is the CEO of leading Australian financial comparison site InfoChoice.com.au.

 

Tags: 
Interest Rates Big Four

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