ME hikes home loan interest rates: does this mark the end of super low rates?

Kelly Emmerton

19 Apr 2018

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Online lender ME has announced it is increasing home loan interest rates across its variable mortgage range effective today, citing increased funding costs as the reason - and it’s not the first to do so.

ME hiked its standard variable rate for existing owner-occupier principal-and-interest borrowers with an 80% LVR by 6 basis points, bringing it to 5.09% p.a. (5.11% comparison rate).

Existing investor principal-and-interest borrowers were hit with a bigger increase of 11 basis points, while interest-only borrowers saw the biggest increase of 16 basis points.

ME home loan rate changes - April 2018

                            

ME CEO Jamie McPhee said higher funding costs and an increase in regulatory requirements were the main reasons for the rate changes.

“Funding costs have been steadily increasing over the last few months primarily due to rising US interest rates that have flowed through to higher short-term interest rates in Australia,” he said.

“At the same time, industry reforms and increasing regulatory obligations are increasing our compliance costs.”

The move from ME follows a similar change from Suncorp in March, when it raised home loan rates by as much as 12 basis points, also citing funding pressure as the main reason.

“Funding costs have been steadily rising since the end of October. This has been driven by the outlook for US interest rates, as well as domestic factors,” said Suncorp Banking & Wealth CEO David Carter.

Mozo Data Manager Peter Marshall has been expecting funding pressures to result in more rate rises for a while now, and said borrowers can expect even more rate hikes to come.

“With the cost of finding overseas funding on the rise, I think a number of banks are going to start nudging their home loan rates up over the coming months,” he said.

“We’ve been in an incredibly low rate environment for a long time now - there hasn’t been an RBA rate rise since November 2010. But the RBA has flagged its intentions to start raising the cash rate, and the US Fed have already started raising rates, so Australia’s rock bottom borrowing rates can’t last forever.”

So if you’re borrowing or refinancing your existing mortgage, now’s the time to look around for a low rate option and maybe even to lock in a fixed rate. To get you started, check out some hot fixed rate home loan options below.

Hot fixed rate home loans 2018

Rates updated daily. Advertiser disclosure.

  • loans.com.au

    2.29% p.a.
    fixed 2 years

    2.81% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    Special Offer Fixed Rate Home Loan

    This 3 Year Fixed Rate Special Offer for purchase or refinance. Rate lock option available. No monthly or ongoing fees.

    • 2.29% p.a.
      fixed 2 years

    • 2.81% p.a.

    • $520

    • $0.00

    • $0.00

    • yes - free up to $10,000 p.a.

    • no

    • no

    • $520

    • 80.00%

    • $50,000

    • $1,000,000

    • Fixed

    • Principal & Interest

    • Owner Occupier

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

    Read our Mozo Review to learn more about the Special Offer Fixed Rate Home Loan

  • HSBC

    2.09% p.a.
    fixed 2 years

    2.98% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    Fixed Rate Home Loan

    Have the security of a fixed rate for 2 years with the option to split with one of the HSBC variable Home Loans. No ongoing monthly service fees or annual fees. Mozo Experts Choice Fixed Home Loan 2020^

    • 2.09% p.a.
      fixed 2 years

    • 2.98% p.a.

    • $0

    • $0.00

    • $300.00

    • yes - free up to $10,000 p.a.

    • no

    • no

    • $0

    • 80.00%

    • $50,000

    • $7,500,000

    • Fixed

    • Principal & Interest

    • Owner Occupier

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

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

  • Homestar

    1.98% p.a.
    fixed 1 year

    2.41% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    Star Classic Fixed Home Loan

    Enjoy a new and unbelievably low introductory rate home loan for one year. Unlimited free online redraws and additional repayments up to $20K to help you pay off your home sooner. Multiple loan splits possible and flexible replacements. (Rates revert after introductory period ends).

    • 1.98% p.a.
      fixed 1 year

    • 2.41% p.a.

    • $495

    • $0.00

    • $535.00

    • yes - free up to $20,000 p.a.

    • yes - free

    • no

    • $495

    • 80.00%

    • $150,000

    • $850,000

    • Fixed

    • Principal & Interest

    • Owner Occupier

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

    Read our Mozo Review to learn more about the Star Classic Fixed Home Loan

  • UBank

    2.14% p.a.
    fixed 1 year

    2.48% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    UHomeLoan

    Fast, easy apply and no ongoing fees. Choose between weekly, fortnightly or monthly repayments. 1 year fixed rates are for new Owner Occupier Principal & Interest loans. Winner of a Mozo Experts Choice Award 2019 in the Fixed Rate Home Loan category.^

    • 2.14% p.a.
      fixed 1 year

    • 2.48% p.a.

    • $395

    • $0.00

    • $0.00

    • yes - free up to $20,000 p.a.

    • no

    • no

    • $395

    • 80.00%

    • $100,000

    • $2,000,000

    • Fixed

    • Principal & Interest

    • Owner Occupier

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

    • $395 Establishment fee waived for fixed rate loans that settle by 31 March 2020.

    Read our Mozo Review to learn more about the UHomeLoan

  • Hot Deal $2,000 Refinance Cash Bonus (T&Cs apply)

    Suncorp

    2.29% p.a.
    fixed 2 years

    3.28% p.a.

    $1234

    Product details Close details
    Fixed Home Loan Special Offer Home Package Plus

    No monthly account keeping fees & No loan establishment fee. Get a $2,000 cash bonus when you refinance with an eligible Suncorp Bank Home Loan of $250k+. T&Cs & eligibility criteria apply.

    • 2.29% p.a.
      fixed 2 years

    • 3.28% p.a.

    • $0

    • $375.00 yearly

    • $350.00

    • yes - free up to $500 per month

    • no

    • no

    • $0

    • 90.00%

    • $150,000

    • -

    • Fixed

    • Principal & Interest

    • Owner Occupier

    • Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly

    Read our Mozo Review to learn more about the Fixed Home Loan Special Offer

^See information about the Mozo Experts Choice Home loans Awards