Homeowners stay put as renovation activity heats up

Tom Watson

07 Sep 2017

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The number of Australians making renovations to their homes during the June quarter grew by 2.2 per cent according to the Housing Industry Association, while new dwelling construction declined.  

Mozo’s home loan and property expert Steve Jovcevski said that the increase in renovation activity is a sign than many homeowners are turned off by high housing prices and stamp duty costs.

“It doesn’t surprise me that homeowners are opting to renovate rather than sell up,” he said.   “When you consider that on a $750,000 home in NSW you could pay around $29,000 in stamp duty, it’s no wonder people prefer to funnel that money into renovations on their current home instead of the government’s coffers.”

And the good news for renovators is that home lenders this spring are keen to attract mortgage holders wanting to tap into the increased equity in their home to fund renovations.   

Since June 1, 29 lenders have made cuts to both fixed and variable home loan rates for owner occupiers, with rates as low as 3.54% for refinancers with an LVR of 80%. Check out a range of top refinance home loans currently on the market below, or for ideas on renovation trends head over to our renovation guides hub.

Top 5 Refinance Home Loans - rates updated daily

  • UBank

    3.59% p.a.

    3.59% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    UHomeLoan - Discount Offer

    A low rate Home Loan with no bank fees on variable rate loans. Easy & fast to apply. Choose between flexible repayments and make extra repayments for free on a variable rate home loan.

    • $0.00

    • $0.00

    • yes - free

    • yes

    • no

    • 3.59% p.a.

    • 3.59% p.a.

    • $0

    • 80.00%

    • $200,000

    • $699,999

    • Variable

    • Principal & Interest

    • Owner Occupier

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

    Read our Mozo Review to learn more about the UHomeLoan - Discount Offer

  • HSBC

    3.59% p.a.

    3.61% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    Discounted Home Value Loan

    Discounted rate for the life of the loan. A relationship manager to help you through the application process.

    • $0.00

    • $300.00

    • yes - free

    • yes - free online

    • no

    • 3.59% p.a.

    • 3.61% p.a.

    • $150

    • 90.00%

    • $50,000

    • $7,500,000

    • Variable

    • Principal & Interest

    • Owner Occupier

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

    Read our Mozo Review to learn more about the Discounted Home Value Loan

  • loans.com.au

    4.29% p.a.

    4.31% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    Essentials Variable 80

    No monthly or ongoing fees. Unlimited additional repayments.

    • $0.00

    • $0.00

    • yes - free

    • yes - free

    • no

    • 4.29% p.a.

    • 4.31% p.a.

    • $520

    • 80.00%

    • $50,000

    • $2,000,000

    • Variable

    • Principal & Interest

    • Investor

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

    Read our Mozo Review to learn more about the Essentials Variable 80

  • ME

    3.97% p.a.

    3.99% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    Basic Home Loan

    No fees to redraw & low variable rate. Meet a mobile banker at a time or place that suits you.

    • $0.00

    • $350.00

    • yes - free

    • yes - free

    • no

    • 3.97% p.a.

    • 3.99% p.a.

    • $400

    • 80.00%

    • $40,000

    • -

    • Variable

    • Principal & Interest

    • Owner Occupier

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

    Read our Mozo Review to learn more about the Basic Home Loan

  • Gateway Bank

    3.64% p.a.

    3.66% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    Low Rate Essentials Home Loan

    A great low variable rate with no annual fees & make extra repayments without any penalties.

    • $0.00

    • $300.00

    • yes - free

    • yes - free

    • no

    • 3.64% p.a.

    • 3.66% p.a.

    • $275

    • 80.00%

    • $50,000

    • $2,000,000

    • Variable

    • Principal & Interest

    • Owner Occupier

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

    Read our Mozo Review to learn more about the Low Rate Essentials Home Loan

*WARNING: This comparison rate applies only to the example or examples given. Different amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees or early repayment fees, and cost savings such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan. The comparison rate displayed is for a secured loan with monthly principal and interest repayments for $150,000 over 25 years.

Steps to refinance to fund a renovation

Step 1. Work out a renovation budget. Whether you get professional help from an architect, landscaper or builder to work out how much you’ll need to do the changes to your home that you want, or you just work backwards from a lump sum amount you think you can afford, having a budget in mind before you speak with your lender or do any of the work is super important.

Step 2. Compare home loan deals.  Before you just get in contact with your existing home lender to discuss your renovation budget, it’s a good idea to compare rates from other lenders in the market. Not only will this help you when negotiating with your existing lender if you decided to refinance with them, it will also help you get up to speed on new features or options that may not have been available when you first took out your home loan. Mozo’s Switch & Save Calculator is a good place to start - it compares over 100 home loans in our database that are available now.

Step 3. Refinance. Once you’ve found a home loan that ticks the boxes for you, you can kick off your refinancing application. Be sure that you’ve also done your homework around any mortgage discharge costs or upfront costs that you might need to pay when switching home loans.

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