How to choose a home loan: A NAB and Citi loan comparison

woman on a couch checking out some home loans

It can be overwhelming looking at home loans. Tools like our home loan calculator or comparison hub can be very good starting points to give you key numbers, though there’s still more you can do. 

The overall repayment costs are important but when deciding between home loans you also need to consider extra features and potential fees. These can tip the scales for you.

As an example, we’ve compared two basic home loans with the same starting interest rate but with slightly different features and fees.

Home loanNAB Base Variable Home Loan Special OfferCiti Basic Variable Home Loan
Interest rateFrom  2.29% (2.33% comparison rate*) for 80% LVRFrom 2.29% (2.34% comparison rate*) for 80% LVR
Maximum loan amountNo maximum$4,000,000
Upfront feesUpfront fee of $0Upfront fee of $649
Extra repaymentsFreeFree
Redraw facilitiesFree with a $500 minimumFree
Repayment frequencyWeekly, fortnightly or monthlyWeekly, fortnightly or monthly
Offset accountNoNo
Maximum LVRUp to 95% LVRUp to 90% LVR
Discharge fees$350$350

Let’s look at a basic example.

Mariano and Dolores are looking to buy a three bedroom home in the suburbs. The house they want is selling for about $1,000,000 and they only have a 10% deposit of $100,000 saved up, which means they have to borrow $900,000.

With the NAB Base Variable Home Loan Special Offer, the couple won't get the 2.29% (2.33% comparison rate*) rate because they don’t have a 20% deposit. Instead, with a 10% deposit their interest rate would be 2.99% p.a (2.99% p.a. comparison rate*).

Here are the estimated numbers for the 90% LVR rate:

  • Monthly repayment: $3,790
  • Total interest payable : $464,250
  • Total paid in 30 years: $1,364,250

Alternatively, with the Citi Basic Variable Home Loan, the interest Mariano and Dolores would get with a 10% deposit starts at 2.54% p.a. (2.59% p.a. comparison rate*) rather than the 2.29% (2.34% comparison rate*) rate.

Here are the estimated numbers for the 90% LVR rate:

  • Monthly repayment: $3,575
  • Total interest payable: $386,940
  • Total upfront fees paid: $694
  • Total paid in 30 years: $1,287,634

Which home loan works better here?

Even with upfront fees the Citi Basic Variable Home Loan is actually $76,616 cheaper! This is assuming Mariano and Dolores receive the lowest possible rate for their 90% LVR for the examples given. We are also not taking into account that variable rates fluctuate during the life of the loan, so take note of that.

If you are interested in comparing more home loans, look at some of the best home loans in Australia. If you’re looking for more low rate variable home loans, check out the chart below.

Home loan comparisons on Mozo

Mozo may receive payment if you click the products below. We don’t compare the entire market, but you can compare more home loans here.
Last updated 21 July 2024 Important disclosures and comparison rate warning*
  • Unloan Variable

    • Owner Occupier
    • LVR <80%
    Interest rate
    5.99 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    5.90 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $2,995
    Go to site

    Built by CommBank, the Unloan is the first home loan with an increasing discount (conditions apply) for borrowers. No application or banking fees. No monthly account keeping or early exit fees. Apply online in minutes.

  • Special Real Deal Home Loan

    • Owner Occupier
    • Principal & Interest
    • LVR <80%
    Interest rate
    6.09 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.13 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,027
    Go to site

    Refinancers or first home buyers pay no monthly or annual fees. Flexibility to choose your repayment schedule (weekly, fortnightly or monthly). Redraw facility available. Split your home loan into multiple loan accounts.

  • Unloan Variable

    • Owner Occupier
    • LVR <80%
    Interest rate
    5.99 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    5.90 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $2,995
    Go to site

    Built by CommBank, the Unloan is the first home loan with an increasing discount (conditions apply) for borrowers. No application or banking fees. No monthly account keeping or early exit fees. Apply online in minutes.

  • Express Home Loan

    • Owner Occupier
    • Principal & Interest
    • LVR <90%
    Interest rate
    6.01 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.14 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,001
    Go to site

    Get online approval from the award-winning Bendigo Bank Express Home Loan. Multiple offset accounts and redraw available. 100% offset on variable rate loans and partial offset on fixed rate. Flexible repayment options. New home loans only.

  • Special Real Deal Home Loan

    • Owner Occupier
    • Principal & Interest
    • LVR <80%
    Interest rate
    6.09 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.13 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,027
    Go to site

    Refinancers or first home buyers pay no monthly or annual fees. Flexibility to choose your repayment schedule (weekly, fortnightly or monthly). Redraw facility available. Split your home loan into multiple loan accounts.

  • Basic Home Loan

    • Owner Occupier
    • LVR<60%
    • Principal & Interest
    Interest rate
    6.14 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.16 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,043
    Go to site

    Enjoy a low rate home loan with $0 application fee and $0 ongoing fees. Flexibility to split your loan and set different repayment types. Fee free redraw from your loan using online banking. Flexible ways to repay. 40% Deposit required.

  • Mortgage Simplifier

    • LVR<80%
    • Owner Occupier
    • Principal & Interest
    Interest rate
    6.14 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.17 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,043

    Get a competitive variable rate with ING’s Mortgage Simplifier. Free extra repayments, no monthly or annual fees. Freedom to make free extra repayments or redraws.

  • Offset Home Loan

    • Owner Occupier
    • LVR<60%
    • Principal & Interest
    Interest rate
    6.14 % p.a.
    Variable
    Comparison rate
    6.39 % p.a.
    Initial monthly repayment
    $3,043
    Go to site

    Ability to open up to 10 offset accounts per loan account. Fast online application. Linked Debit Mastercard® with fee-free access at ATMs across Australia. Package a credit card with your home loan and the annual card fee will be waived (T&Cs apply). 40% deposit required.

image of houses

Need help with refinancing?

You might have questions that need personal answers. We’ve teamed up with the mortgage brokers at Lendi to get you the answers you need, and a home loan deal you deserve.

Learn more

* 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.

** Initial monthly repayment figures are estimates only, based on the advertised rate. You can change the loan amount and term in the input boxes at the top of this table. Rates, fees and charges and therefore the total cost of the loan may vary depending on your loan amount, loan term, and credit history. Actual repayments will depend on your individual circumstances and interest rate changes.

^See information about the Mozo Experts Choice Home Loan Awards

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