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Is now a good time to lock in a fixed rate?

With interest rates at record low levels, today we’ll look at a question that many are asking: should I lock in a fixed rate home loan?

You may have recently received a call directly from your bank, or seen more ads than usual across the internet spruiking super low fixed-rate mortgages.

Here’s why: lenders are scrambling over one another to lock-in customers right now.

And their weapon of choice? Fixed-rate home loans.

With so many families doing it tough right now, locking in a low fixed interest rate can be an appealing option to reduce your monthly repayments and obtain peace of mind.

And while it may very well be a good route for your family, like most things in life, it’s important to weigh up the pros and cons before you leap.

Consideration 1: The bank is not offering it out of the goodness of their heart

Let’s get the obvious one out of the way: banks are not promoting fixed-rate home loans right now as an act of goodwill.

They’re there to sell a product. And they often use this product in particular when they’re trying to stop clients from walking away. Not only are you locking in a rate, but the lender is locking you in, too.

Consideration 2: Loss of flexibility

We all know the big benefit of locking in a fixed rate: you get a guaranteed low rate for however many years you lock it in for.

But it also comes with a downside, which is: if things improve and you want to pay your loan off quicker, switch products, or switch lenders, you don’t have the flexibility to do so.

Indeed, breaking a fixed home loan can be expensive, often costing anywhere between thousands and tens of thousands of dollars.

Consideration 3: How low can they go?

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) cut the cash rate to a record low of 0.25% in March – the second rate cut that month.

Now, most experts believe this is as low as the RBA will go – and even RBA governor Philip Lowe has made it clear that he regards 0.25%, rather than zero, as the “effective lower bound” for official interest rates.

But that doesn’t mean the banks can’t drop their interest rates lower independent of official RBA rate cuts.

As mentioned above, competition in this space has been heating up recently and lenders are all eager for a bigger slice of the pie.

When you might want to lock the rate in

All that said, there are times when locking in an interest rate may be the best option for you and your family.

The big one is if your circumstances have recently changed and you’re seeking some stability.

This includes if you’re starting a family and you’re going from two incomes to one. Or if you or your partner’s income has been affected by COVID-19 and you’re wanting to lower your monthly repayments instead of seeking hardship options.

Another key factor is if you can’t sleep at night because you’re worrying that rates will go up. That said, it’s worth noting that the RBA recently stated: “the cash rate would remain at a very low level for an extended period”.

Still on the fence? Give us a call

Like many things in life, when it comes to home loans, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution.

While locking in a fixed rate home loan may help you secure a lower interest rate during this time of instability, it also comes with a few drawbacks.

So if you’d like to find out if locking in a fixed rate is a good fit for you, give us a call at MAKE Finance 02 6021 6600. We’re happy to run through all your options with you – not just the one product!

Disclaimer: The content of this article is general in nature and is presented for informative purposes. It is not intended to constitute financial advice, whether general or personal nor is it intended to imply any recommendation or opinion about a financial product. It does not take into consideration your personal situation and may not be relevant to circumstances. Before taking any action, consider your own particular circumstances and seek professional advice. This content is protected by copyright laws and various other intellectual property laws. It is not to be modified, reproduced or republished without prior written consent.

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The staff at MAKE Finance Group are experienced and dedicated to providing our clients with exceptional levels of advice and service.

As a full service finance broker, we can save you time and stress as we negotiate with Banks and Financiers on your behalf. Whether it is asset or equipment finance, business finance and advice or even a home loan, we will go to the market on your behalf and find the best possible deal available.

Let us worry about the financials, as we make it happen for you.

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The staff at MAKE Finance Group are experienced and dedicated to providing our clients with exceptional levels of advice and service.

MAKE Finance Group holds sought after commercial lending accreditations and access to a substantial panel of lenders for both Equipment and Business Finance.

As a finance broker MAKE Finance Group saves you time and stress as we negotiate with Banks and Financiers on your behalf. This allows you to keep focused on your business while we do the finance work.

This ensures you receive the best offers with the objective of saving money and increasing profitability.

Testimonials

Here is what a couple of our clients have said about MAKE Finance Group.
  • Geoff at MAKE Finance Group made the process of purchasing an investment property a seamless process. Thanks for your patience Geoff. I would highly recommend Geoff and his team at MAKE for all your finance needs. Cathy, Warrnambool

  • Geoff and Christine helped me from the ground up with acquiring my first home loan, they helped me from the application process all through to small advice on how to take on the new world I've been introduced to. I am honestly glad to have been referred to MAKE Finance Group, I couldn't have found someone as thorough, professional and friendly to have helped me along the way. Paul, Albury  

  • Geoff and the team at MAKE Finance were unbelievably helpful when we needed to refinance our business loan. After a stressful and confusing ordeal with our existing lender, Geoff made re-financing so easy, and it tool very little work from our end to sort everything out. We are so happy with everything sorted and not having to worry about our finance arrangements. We would encourage anyone with any financing needs to go and see Geoff and the team at MAKE Finance, thanks Geoff! Philip and Jenni, Holbrook

  • Thank you to the team at MAKE Finance Group, for helping me purchase my first truck. I cannot thank them enough as they went above and beyond all my expectations and made the whole process easy and stress free, I would highly recommend them to anyone. Rob, Canberra

  • Applying for a business loan (direct through a Bank) was becoming a stressful and difficult task for us as everything had to be discussed over the phone followed by numerous paperwork. Geoff at MAKE Finance Group was our savior. Your personalised service made the application for our business loan & business vehicle loan so easy. We now operate a very successful business & we could not have done this without you. We love your work! Lloyd & Kristy Franchisee of Jim’s Mowing Wodonga East

  • “MAKE Finance Group were an absolute pleasure to deal with. Right from the very beginning, even when we were just asking questions as to how home loans work and how much we could afford, they made the process incredibly easy and put everything into terms that we could understand. There’s a lot involved with buying your first home, but it felt effortless with the superb help from both Jess & Geoff. MAKE Finance Group definitely come highly recommend from us – thanks guys!” Sophie & Zach, Albury

  • “Buying a new car was a big deal for me as I had a very strong love for my only car of 10 years.  I approached MAKE Finance Group to help me source a loan for my new car, and they made me feel 100% positive about making the change, as the process that they followed to obtain the loan was flawless. They came to me which I hugely appreciated, everything was in order and all follow ups and questions were answered without hesitation. I cannot recommend them enough for their professional and friendly service.” Stephanie, Albury

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