BORROWERS have the perfect opportunity to seize great deals in January while many lenders have taken a home loan hiatus.
Staffing levels within financial institutions are significantly lower at the start of year experts say, translating to fewer lenders bothering to make any interest rate movements in the first few weeks of 2017.
Analysis by financial comparison website finder.com.au shows only a handful of lenders have moved any of their rate deals this month — those who have include ANZ, Suncorp, ME and Virgin Money.
On Friday ANZ announced it was hiking fixed-rates deals on owner occupier and investment loans on two, three and four-year terms.
The bank’s largest rate increase was a 0.4 per cent hike to three-year fixed investment loans, rising from 4.14 per cent to 4.54 per cent on Friday.
It’s also expected another one of the big four banks will increase fixed rate interest deals early next week.
Home Loan Experts managing director Otto Dargan said now was the perfect time for borrowers to pounce on good loan deals before potentially future rises in the coming months.
“There’s a few banks that didn’t put up their fixed rates before Christmas break and you have to wonder how long it is going to be before they follow the rest of the market,’’ he said.
“Banks need several departments to sign off a change in pricing so the holiday period may have given people a final chance to switch loans or fix.”
Mr Dargan believes a lot of banks will be increasing their interest-only loan rates this year and urges investors to consider their options before they get stung.
Finder.com.au spokeswoman Bessie Hassan also said borrowers “can expect further out-of-cycle announcements to follow in the months ahead.”
The Reserve Bank of Australia board meets again in February and it’s expected they will keep the cash rate on hold at 1.5 per cent.