With interest rates on the rise in Australia, many homeowners are likely wondering how they can keep their home loan repayments down.
Some borrowers might be considering fixing their home loan interest rate.
In this article, we discuss what’s happening with mortgage interest rates in Australia and whether you should consider fixing yours before rates move again. We also explain what happens if you want to switch to a variable interest rate before your fixed rate term ends.
Interest rates have begun rising in Australia after 18 months of remaining at record lows. The cash rate increased for the first time in nearly 12 years this May, with more rises expected to come throughout 2022.
This means home loan interest rates are increasing too. Borrowers on variable interest rate home loans will be affected almost as soon as the cash rate increases, provided their lender passes on the rate rise in full.
On the other hand, borrowers with fixed rate home loans won’t feel the effects of a cash rate hike just yet.
So, with more increases to the cash rate on the horizon, is it worth fixing your interest rate now?
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A fixed interest rate is ‘fixed’ to your home loan for a specified period of time. This is called a fixed term, and it typically lasts from 1 to 5 years.
One of the main benefits of a fixed rate is if interest rates rise, your home loan repayments will stay the same until the end of your fixed term.
If you’re a borrower who enjoys the certainty of making the same repayment amount each month and the stability it brings to your household budget, a fixed interest rate could be for you.
However, it’s important to note that fixed rates are rising as well as variable rates. So, there are a few things you might want to weigh up before choosing to fix your rate now, such as:
Ultimately, you’ll need to consider your individual financial situation and needs before deciding to fix your home loan rate.
If you’re having trouble deciding if fixing your rate is right for you, talking to a Home Loan Specialist could help.
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If you choose to fix your interest rate before rates continue rising, there will likely be certain conditions attached to your fixed rate loan.
These include break costs, which your lender may charge when you refinance your loan, pay off your loan early or make extra repayments before your fixed term is up.
So, if you wish to change to a variable rate prior to your fixed term ending, you’ll want to weigh up whether it’s worth paying break fees or waiting until the fixed rate period has ended.
If you are not sure you can commit to the conditions of a fixed rate home loan for a full fixed period, you might want to think about a split rate loan.
A split rate loan allows you to fix a portion of your interest rate and keep the other portion on a variable interest rate. This doesn’t have to be a 50/50 split – you can choose how the loan is broken up between fixed and variable interest rates.
Choosing a split rate loan can allow you the certainty of fixed repayments while also experiencing lower repayments should rates drop, as well as the features that typically only come with variable rate home loans.
If you have questions about fixing your interest rate, Lendi’s Home Loan Specialists can help. Book an appointment at a time that suits you.
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The information in this post is general in nature and should not be considered personal or financial advice. You should always seek professional advice or assistance before making any financial decisions.
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