Since the federal government’s decision in late November to extend its HomeBuilder scheme, a growing number of Australians have been pouring some serious money into home renovation projects like garden landscaping and room remodelling.HomeBuilder, which began in June last year, involved handing out $25,000 cash grants (now reduced down to $15,000) to eligible households to cover the cost of home building or renovations. This scheme was introduced to help boost activity in the housing construction industry, and has so far seen a huge takeup in interest. According to Treasury figures, 75,143 households applied as of 31 December, which is almost double of what was initially predicted.
If there’s one thing 2020 gave the average Aussie, it’s a change in perspective when it comes to money. Not only did we take saving more seriously, but one in four Aussies vowed to rid themselves of debt. “Historically, Australians haven’t been afraid of debt, particularly through our love of credit cards. We’ve racked up debt with the assumption that job security and a steady paycheck is a relatively safe bet, but a global pandemic has tipped that notion on its head as unemployment soars,” said Mozo Director, Kirsty Lamont. “For many people, Covid-19 has been a wake up call to get their finances in order, and eliminating debt is a key part of that.” If you’ve never had to take a serious look at your debt before, it can seem a little daunting. So to equip you with skills you need to make your debt disappear, we’ve listed our top four tips below.
Whether you’re planning on renovating your home, going on holiday or consolidating debt, there’s no shortage of personal loans to help you get things off to the right start. And with so many digital lenders out there, much of the lengthy wait times and paperwork that were once par for the course when borrowing have been cut in half.
Chances are we’ve all picked up a new hobby during the pandemic, whether it’s sewing or baking. For a big portion of Australians though, their newest obsession is with home improvement projects. New research from retailer Amart Furniture found over a third of Aussies used the extra time spent indoors to update and restyle their homes. But rather than knocking down parts of the living room or bedroom for large-scale renovations, 58% of respondents said they opted to buy new furniture instead. In fact, furniture sales have been steadily increasing since the start of COVID-19. Couches (30%), chairs (28%), coffee tables (28%), desks (27%), and mattresses (24%) top the list as the five most popular items Australians purchased over this period, according to Amart Furniture. “So many of us can relate to making changes to the way we live in our homes at the moment, whether that’s creating a new office space from scratch or turning our living rooms into makeshift restaurants, cinemas and gyms,” Amart Furniture’s general manager of buying, Steve Norman said.
While it's true that the Trans-Tasman travel bubble has just opened up, many Aussies are still planning to holiday in their own backyard rather than jetsetting overseas. And while some may have the savings to back up an Australian trip, for others covering the cost of may seem like a little more of a stretch. That’s where a personal loan might help you, as an alternative to something like a credit card. So why not just use a credit card? Well, currently on the Mozo database, the average secured personal loan rate sits at 7.96% and the average unsecured personal loan rate is 10.26%. Alternatively, the average credit card rate is 17.43%. While a credit card may give you the flexibility when it comes to the potential cost of a trip, a personal loan may end up saving you in the amount you pay in interest.
Whether you’ve had your sights set on a new set of wheels, renovating your home, taking that road trip around the country or perhaps consolidating your debt into a low rate repayment, now might be the time to consider getting yourself a personal or car loan to reach those financial goals.But where do you begin? With so many options out there, shopping around can be daunting, but comparing loans is a must! So a great place to begin your search are with the winners of the Mozo Experts Choice Awards for personal and car loans.“We compared a massive 334 personal lending products on offer from 88 Australian financial institutions and found a vast difference in interest rates from provider to provider,” said Peter Marshall, Mozo Experts Choice Awards judge. “Our in depth analysis highlighted why it is so important to shop around, and with a myriad of smaller online lenders out there competing for your business, you could be paying more than you need to by not comparing your options beforehand.”Personal Loan Provider of the Year
The idea of borrowing money on credit has been around since the earliest marketplaces. Indeed, money lending can be traced back as far as the Roman Empire and ancient Greece. What has changed over time is how loans work. Modern day lenders are subject to many more regulations, and loans can be firmly categorised as either secured or unsecured. Plus with the introduction of Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR) and the phasing in of Open Banking in recent years, your personal story is crucial to your personal loan. In other words, the amount you need to borrow, together with your credit history, will help determine what loan you choose. In the following report, we’ve broken down the current marketplace, looking at the best personal loans in 2020 compared to a year ago. We also share tips on improving your credit score and how to save money on your loan overall.
Personal loans are likely to become increasingly popular in coming months as Australians look to consolidate debt, finance long-planned home projects or simply avail themselves of some extra cash in these economically tough times.