Bushfire inquiry, mortgage refinancing, renewable energy: This week’s best banking news

young woman in bushfire inquiry
  • NSW bushfire inquiry calls for better risk management to keep insurance premiums down
  • 94% of home loan holders could be losing out by not refinancing 
  • COVID-19 pushes investment in renewable energy 
  • Where car loans sit in August 2020 
  • Short-term personal loans: how one could save you money 
  • Father’s day is around the corner, here are some cheap gift ideas! 

All in this week’s best banking news recap: editor’s pick. 

Bushfire inquiry shows better risk management will keep insurance premiums down 

In a recent inquiry into the NSW bushfires, it was suggested that better risk management will keep home insurance premiums down. 

A massive 2,476 homes in NSW were lost as a result of the bushfires. Improved risk management would mean allowing property and landowners to review conditions, so they could determine the risk of being hit by bushfires each year.

The report recommended that subsidies be introduced to encourage homeowners to assess their area’s bushfire risk. However, it failed to address the need for standardisation in home insurance terms. 

Read full article:
Inquiry into bushfires suggests risk reviews to keep premiums down for more about standardisation in home insurance terms and what it means for consumers. 

Mortgage refinancing: 94% of Aussie home loan customers may miss a better deal by sticking with current loan 

Fresh numbers from the Australian Bureau of Statistics and APRA reveal that 321,364 home loan customers (6%) refinanced their mortgage from June 2019 to June 2020. 

That left a whopping 4.6 million home loans untouched, which could leave many missing out on potential savings by not making the switch. 

But it’s not too late! In fact, Mozo Director Kirsty Lamont says there are plenty of home loan options out there that could save customers money. 

“In the last six months we’ve seen interest rates fall to record lows, so home loans are essentially on sale, which doesn’t happen very often,” she said.

“This year more than ever, households could benefit from having extra cash in the weekly budget, so now is a great time to review your mortgage and make sure you are getting the best deal possible.” 

Read full article:
Home loan refinance: 94% of mortgage holders could be losing out by failing to switch and see how much refinancing could save you. 

Renewable energy on the rise since COVID-19 outbreak

woman in front of solar panels

In a recent report from industry researcher IBISWorld, the success of coal-fired power stations declined, while more is being invested into renewable generators. 

“The closure of businesses across the economy has contributed to a sharp downturn in electricity demand from commercial markets,” said IBISWorld senior industry analyst, James Caldwell. 

“At the same time, growth in the number of Australians working and studying from home has contributed to a strong upswing in electricity demand from residential customers.” 

Caldwell explained that electricity demand is estimated to have dropped by 4% over the 2019/20 financial year. He said that 2% can be attributed to the global pandemic, while the other 2% is a result of a greater uptake in small-scale solar systems. 

Read full article:
How Covid-19 has had a positive impact on renewable energy for more on how renewables are forecasted to overtake fossil fuels.  

Car loan rate snapshot: August 2020

Ditching international flights for Aussie highways? Need a car to get you there? Well, a car loan may be what you need. 

Whether you want brand-spanking new or a bit of pre-loved, according to the Mozo database, both new and used car loan rates are sitting around the same point.

However, there are plenty of providers that offer rates well lower than that - so now may be your time to jump on a great deal. 

Read full article:
How are car loan rates looking right now? to find out which providers are offering killer rates right now. 

Looking for a short-term personal loan? Here’s how it could save you money

man on laptop taking out short term personal loan

When it comes to personal loans, in some instances shorter is better. 

Last week, personal loan lender SocietyOne changed its pricing system on its Unsecured Personal Loan (Fixed). Customers that opt for a 5-year term will receive a 7.99% rate (9.25% comparison rate*), while those that choose a 2 or 3-year term will get 6.99% (9.00% comparison rate*). 

Why is this, you ask? Well, according to Mozo Banking Expert, Peter Marshall it’s a different form of risk-based pricing. 

“In this instance, lenders are looking at customers opting to borrow for longer terms as higher-risk,” he said. 

“This is possibly based on their own experience. These lenders may have found that people with longer loans are more likely to have problems over the life of the loan.”

Teachers Mutual Bank and Queensland Country Bank are the only two other lenders on the Mozo database to have adopted this pricing model. 

Read full article:
How a short-term personal loan could save you money for more from Marshall and to see who these tiered rates benefit. 

How to snag a bargain on your dad’s day gift 

Like many Aussies, you may not have a lot of spare change to spoil your dad this Father’s Day. 

But don’t fret, there are still plenty of ways to keep a smile on your old man’s dial with these affordable gift ideas: 

  • Reusable face mask: prices start around $15 
  • At-home subscriptions: from streaming services to online yoga 
  • Home-delivered beer or wine: swap out a trip to the pub for an at-home beer and yarn 
  • A socially distanced day out: hit the park or go on a bushwalk, some activities cost as little as $0! 

Read full article:  Cheap and cheerful Father's Day gifts for 2020 for a deeper look into gift ideas. 

Want to start saving to spoil dad on Christmas instead? Check out these killer savings account options and watch your stash grow.

Compare Savings Accounts - rates updated daily

Search promoted savings accounts below or do a full Mozo database search. Advertiser disclosure.
  • placeholder
    Boost Saver with Go Account

    Maximum rate
    standard interest rate
    Govt Deposit Guarantee
    1.50% p.a. (for $0 to $250,000)
    0.10% p.a.(for $0 and over)
    Yes up to $250,000

    Intro bonus rate of 1.50% for first 3 months, reverting to 1.20% after. Deposit $2,000 each month and make 5 eligible payments from your Go Account. If you are between 18 and 25 deposit $1,000.

    Go to site
    Details
  • placeholder
    Mozo Experts Choice 2021
    Bonus Saver Account

    Maximum rate
    standard interest rate
    Govt Deposit Guarantee
    1.10% p.a. (for $0 to $250,000)
    0.05% p.a.(for $0 and over)
    Yes up to $250,000

    Bonus rate when at least $20 is deposited each month and five Visa Debit transactions are made each month using linked Everyday or Glide transaction accounts.

    Go to site
    Details
  • placeholder
    Online Saver

    Maximum rate
    standard interest rate
    Govt Deposit Guarantee
    1.10% p.a. (for $0 to $500,000)
    0.35% p.a.(for $0 and over)
    Yes up to $250,000

    Bonus rate for the first 4 months from account opening

    Go to site
    Details
  • placeholder
    Grow Saver

    Maximum rate
    standard interest rate
    Govt Deposit Guarantee
    0.65% p.a. (for $0 and over)
    0.10% p.a.(for $0 and over)
    Yes up to $250,000

    Make at least 1 deposit and no more than 1 withdrawal, including internal transfers or external payments.

    Go to site
    Details
  • placeholder
    Fast Track Saver Account

    Maximum rate
    standard interest rate
    Govt Deposit Guarantee
    1.05% p.a. (for $1 to $250,000)
    0.05% p.a.(for $1 and over)
    Yes up to $250,000

    Ongoing bonus rate applied if in the previous month $1,000 or more is credited to the linked Day2Day Plus account and 5 eligible transactions are made by the linked account.

    Go to site
    Details
  • placeholder
    WebSavings Account

    Maximum rate
    standard interest rate
    Govt Deposit Guarantee
    1.00% p.a. (for $2,000 and over)
    0.05% p.a.(for $2,000 and over)
    Yes up to $250,000

    Bonus rate for the first 4 months from account opening on balances over $2,000 only, available to new customers only.

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