With a fixed-rate loan, you know exactly how much you’ll pay per fortnight or month for the fixed period of the loan (usually one to five years).
Variable rate mortgages
Repayments can change during the life of a variable-rate loan, so you may pay more or less as interest rates rise or fall. If you’re fairly sure that rates are set to fall, this is a good option.
Principal and interest mortgages
In this mortgage, you are paying the amount lent to you plus the interest.
With interest-only, you are paying just the interest on the loan – you are not paying off any of the original principal.
Split home loan (fixed and variable)
You can choose to have part of your loan at a fixed rate and the other part can be at a variable interest rate. If rates do fall, the interest will go down on the variable part of your loan, but you aren’t taking as big a risk should rates rise.
If you have a variable-rate loan and you make extra repayments, then you can withdraw that additional money when you need to (you can’t do this on fixed-rate loans).
A land loan lets you buy a block of land without the pressure to build on it as soon as possible. Land loans are usually variable interest for up to 30 years.
For buying land, building or renovating your home, a 12-month construction loan can be the best way to go. Usually, up to 90 per cent of the property value can be borrowed.
For self-employed people, a home loan can still be arranged using differing supporting documentation that shows your ability to service a loan and might include BAS and bank statements. You self-certify your income, which will need verification. You may be able to borrow up to 80 per cent of the property’s value.
This loan type allows you to convert a portion of your residential property ‘asset’ into cash or an income stream while still allowing you to continue to live in your home.