A smart home loan that still lets you have a life

Interest rates have never been so low – but higher house prices and the growing cost of necessities can put family budgets under pressure.

Here are six ways to help you spend less time worrying about your budget – and have more time for your family. And with Macquarie Bank’s new home loan package, which is packed with useful digital tools, you can have confidence in how you manage your money.

1. Get smart with offset structures

According to the Reserve Bank, around 17% of our home loan balances are currently held in an offset or redraw account – indicating many homeowners are taking the opportunity to reduce the overall interest on their home loan.

So if you’re using a home loan offset account already, that’s great. You’re reducing your interest payments because they’re calculated against the difference between your outstanding loan balance and the balance in your offset account.

But if you’ve ever been tempted to use money in that offset to pay for a holiday, unexpected tax bill or home repairs, you’re probably not using it to its full budgeting power.

It may be a good idea to have at least two offset accounts, both working hard to reduce your interest payments and the life of your loan. One is for short-term savings – a rainy day fund, fun fund or Christmas fund. The other is for the much longer-term. Squirrel it away and don’t be tempted to use it, so it can do the hard work of reducing interest payments and paying off your loan sooner.

2. Digital budgeting

Sticking to a budget can be boring. But Macquarie’s banking app does all the hard work for you.

It automatically categorises your debit card spend so you can see at a glance how much went on groceries compared with eating out.

It also sends you an alert each time you make a transaction – this helpfully warns you of potential misuse, and you can turn off your card straight away from your app if you suspect fraud.

But the app also subtly reminds you that you’re spending money, which means you might think twice next time you consider making an unnecessary purchase. Think of it as a personal trainer helping you remember your diet plan.

3. $0 ATM fees and no international purchase fees

This is a no brainer, because every dollar helps. When you use your debit card, you get free access to any rediATM and enjoy a refund on fees incurred at all other ATMs in Australia. You can also wave goodbye to international purchase fees – making this card a great travel companion.

4. Be interest-free smarter

You can also apply for a Macquarie Bank Black or Platinum credit card as part of your offset package – with no annual credit card fees for the life of your loan.

Use this credit card to make everyday payments during the month, and you’ll keep your offset account topped up for longer (shaving extra dollars off your loan). You’ll also earn Macquarie Awards or Qantas Points, potentially turning those transactions into gift cards or holidays. Just make sure you pay it off within the interest-free period each month.

5. Never look for a receipt again

Do you dread tax time, warranty claims or product returns? Stop spending time hunting through your wallet, drawer or shoebox when you need that one receipt – because you can scan and store them in your banking app, and even code them for tax deductions if they’re business or work expenses.

6. Make your loan investment-savvy

Once you feel in control of your day to day budget and your home loan offsets, you may start thinking about an investment property or other investments.

That’s where Macquarie’s unlimited loan account splits can help: it makes accounting a bit simpler and also helps you track any associated costs with your investments.

Once you put all these tools to work, you can relax and have more time for the things you love. And hopefully, you’ll also feel a little less pressured by the financial demands of family life as you build a more secure future.

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Additional information

† Rate applies for new owner occupied loans when you borrow up to 70% of the property value with a principal and interest repayment variable rate basic home loan. Subject to change without notice.

* The comparison rates are based on a loan for $150,000 and a term of 25 years. WARNING: This comparison rate applies only to the example or examples given. Different amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees or early repayment fees, and cost savings such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may influence the cost of the loan.

Information and interest rates are current as at 8 October 2019 and are subject to change.

Fees & Charges

  • At the end of the fixed rate period, the interest rate will revert to the current standard discounted rates. Our Standard Variable rate and Standard Interest Only Variable rate are currently 4.82% pa and 5.31% pa respectively (variable and comparison*) for Basic owner occupied home loans. Our Investment Variable rate and Investment Interest Only Variable rate are 5.53% pa and 5.88% pa respectively (variable and comparison* for Basic investment home loans. You will be notified of the discount that applies to your rate prior to the end of your fixed rate period.
  • Fixed rate loans may be subject to significant break costs. Please refer to your loan contract and terms for details of break costs applicable
  • Fees and charges apply.

Unless stated otherwise, this information has been prepared by Macquarie Bank Limited ABN 46 008 583 542 AFSL & Australian Credit Licence 237502 and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before making any financial investment decision or a decision about whether to acquire a credit or lending product, a person should obtain and review the terms and conditions relating to that product and also seek independent financial, legal and taxation advice. All applications are subject to Macquarie’s standard credit approval criteria.