Being a smaller bank Suncorp have quite good home loan specials and interest rates compared to the bigger lenders…But they can sometimes ask for more information and documentation than the other banks!
The reality is Suncorp will suit different people depending on what specials are available, and your individual situation.
They often have sharp deals for first home buyers, and sometimes even have special rebates if you are looking to refinance your home loan.
So are they right for you? 🤔
Today I review Suncorp’s Home Loans and put them through their paces.
Note this review, interest rates and product information are correct as at 14th January 2019 and all of this information is subject to change without any further notification. Any applications for credit are subject to meeting the specific bank’s criteria and the decision is at their final discretion.
- What are Suncorp’s Home Loans like?
- What are the different home loan products they offer?
- What are Suncorp Banks Interest Rates?
- What documents does Suncorp need for a home loan?
- How much can I borrow from Suncorp?
- How much does LMI cost compared to other banks
- What else does Suncorp Offer?
- What are some Suncorp Bank Customer Reviews?
- How does Suncorp compare to other banks?
What are Suncorp’s Home Loans like?
The top 5 things Suncorp are good at:
- ✅ 110% LVR no deposit First Home Buyer Loans: For first home buyers, Suncorp has a loan package called the Deposit KickStart Home Loan, which allows you to get the real estate market faster without needing a deposit (using the help of a guarantor). This is also known as a Guarantor Home Loan.
- ✅ Less Genuine Savings Required: Suncorp normally requires borrowers to save up at least 5 per cent of the purchase price. So when you apply with Suncorp you do not need to have genuine savings (i.e. funds you have held in your account for over 3 months). This means your deposit could be gifted, from a tax refund or from non-genuine savings.
- ✅ Multiple Offset Accounts: Suncorp allows you to have multiple offset accounts with your home loan. This is not the case with every lender, for example, the BOQ Privileges Package Home Loan which only allows 1 offset account.
- ✅ Lender’s Mortgage Insurance (LMI): the bank offers one of the cheapest LMI on the market, which can allow borrowers you save heaps of money (we’ll show some examples below). Suncorp also has a delegated underwriting authority with QBE Mortgage Insurance, which can provide faster approvals and more flexible credit policies.
- ✅ Good deals for Business Owners and Self Employed people: Suncorp has a range of small business products to help business owners and self-employed people with lending and transaction accounts. In particular, their Business Essentials products have very low fees and good lending options up to $1,000,000.
The top 5 things Suncorp aren’t so good at:
- ⛔️ Stricter Document Requirements: As we will cover below, Suncorp requires extra documentation compared to some other banks including 3 months statements for all loans, credit cards, store cards and personal transaction accounts regardless if the loan or credit cards are being paid out (compared to other banks who do not ask for this information).
- ⛔️ Hard to Find Package for Unique Situation: Although Suncorp offers a number of benefits to borrowers including sharp rates, and good fees, people with unique income situations like irregular bonuses or overtime might find it difficult to get their loan approved.
- ⛔️ Lower borrowing capacity: Suncorp has slightly tougher lending requirements, and as we will cover below the amount they will lend you is often lower than some of the other lenders. If you are wanting to stretch your borrowing capacity Suncorp might not be the lender for you.
- ⛔️ Slow Assessment Process (if you go directly to the bank): Compared to other lenders, the assessment process of Suncorp is slow if you go directly to the bank, depending on how busy they are. Hunter Galloway has Priority Status with Suncorp, talk to our team if you need fast approval.
- ⛔️ Not the highest customer satisfaction (compared to other small banks): Suncorp customers gave the bank a relatively low net promoter score compared to BOQ and Gateway Credit Union. According to Suncorp’s Annual Report, their net promoter score was 73% compared to BOQ who scored 87.2% and Gateway Credit Union who scored 87%.
What are the different home loan products they offer?
Suncorp Bank has a wide range of home loan products and the 5 most popular include:
1. Home Package Plus
The Suncorp Home Package Plus is similar to most other banks professional package loans, where you receive a discounted interest rate and other backing products like offset accounts and credit cards under one annual fee.
The variable home loan rate under Suncorp’s package is called the Standard Variable Home Loan, you can download their brochure here.
The annual package fee of $385 is slightly cheaper than other larger banks (who generally charge between $395 to $399) and includes benefits like:
- ✅ Sometimes has specials for first home buyers and new customers.
- ✅ Discounts of up to 20% off home, landlord and contents insurance.
- ✅ Discounts of 10% on the first year’s motor insurance
- ✅ No annual fees on eligible Suncorp Platinum, Gold or Standard Credit Cards
- ✅ No monthly maintenance fees on associated Suncorp Offset Accounts
- ✅ Access to discounted brokerage fees on share trading
- ⛔️ Interest only options available but are significantly more expensive than P&I repayments.
- ⛔️ Annual package fee is only slightly cheaper than the big 4 banks
2. Multiple Offset Accounts
This is quite unique, most banks will only allow one offset account against one home loan.
What this means is if you have more than one transaction account, you can link them all to your home loan account and save LOTS of interest.
- ✅ Save more in interest costs having multiple offset accounts
- ✅ Use investment accounts, and other accounts to offset your home loan to reduce interest costs
3. Back to Basics Variable
Suncorp’s basic home loan is just that, a product that is cheap and cheerful but has fewer features and fewer fees than the Home Package Plus product.
You can easily save money using a basic home loan product like the Back to Basics Variable if you don’t need any of the other features under the Home Package Plus like an offset account and discounts on credit cards.
- ✅ Available for both personal, investment and construction purposes
- ✅ No monthly, or annual fees and no establishment fee with lending over $150,000.
- ✅ You can make extra repayments without any penalty
- ⛔️ Redraw is available, only one free redraw per month
- ⛔️ Mortgage offset is not available
4. Access Equity Line of Credit
The Suncorp Access Equity Line of Credit works similar to a credit card after the bank has approved the loan you can withdraw the funds from your line of credit (LOC) where needed and pay it back when you want.
Your approval limit is set by the total equity in your property, which is the difference between what your property is worth and the amount of lending you have against it. For example, if your home is worth $500,000 and you have a home loan of $400,000 against it, your home equity is $100,000.
The advantage with a Line of Credit, over a regular Interest Only Home Loan is that LOC’s are called evergreen, and their interest only period finishes at the end of the loan term.
- ✅ Interest only repayments, with interest, only paid on balance of the loan
- ✅ Can be used as a day to day facility, similar to a credit card
- ✅ Access Equity Line of Credit can be covered under Home Package Plus annual fee.
- ✅ Loan term of between 8 to 30 years.
- ⛔️ The interest rate isn’t as cheap as Suncorp’s other products
5. Deposit Kickstart Home Loan
Like lots of other lenders, Suncorp offers a guarantor home loan which they call the Deposit Kickstart. A Guarantor Home Loan allows you to use a parent, or close relatives property to secure the deposit portion of your loan, meaning you don’t pay lenders mortgage insurance.
Where Suncorp’s product is a bit different, is that they will let you borrow up to 110% of your purchase price – compared to the majority of other banks who only allow between 100-105% of the purchase price.
In other words, if you are buying a home worth $500,000 Suncorp Bank will let you borrow up to $550,000 compared to other banks who would only allow a maximum of $500,000 to $525,000.
This is, of course, subject to their credit criteria, and that your guarantor’s property has enough equity in it and is restricted to a maximum of 30% of their total property value.
- ✅ Borrow up to 110% of your purchase price
- ✅ You can include fees, charges and even consolidate debt as a part of your 110% LVR loan amount
- ✅ Discounted interest rates as LVR is below 80% on your home + your guarantors’ homes
- ✅ Guarantors do not need to refinance their home to Suncorp
- ⛔️ Guarantors need to obtain independent legal and financial advice
- ⛔️ Tougher lending criteria compared to some other banks
- ⛔️ Not available when using income from a second job, overseas income or on investment loans.
What are Suncorp Bank’s Interest Rates?
Suncorp’s home loan interest rates are very competitive when compared to the big 4 banks. They can be extremely competitive depending on the time of the year and recently have had some market leading offers available.
From time to time Suncorp offers special interest rates to mortgage brokers, they are based on different criteria including the loan to value ratio and type of property with lower rates if you are buying or refinancing a home that you live in (often referred to as owner-occupied).
Home Package Plus Home Loan
This is Suncorp Banks’ professional package and is only available on new home loans and subject to Suncorp’s credit criteria. Interest rates as at 14th January 2019, based on owner-occupied purposes, principal and interest repayments and subject to change without any further notice.
Interest rates from Suncorp’s website Monday 14 January 2019 and subject to change at any time without any further notification.
What documents does Suncorp need for a home loan?
Bank of QLD’s application checklist is fairly standard compared to most banks (with a few small exceptions which I’ve underlined below) and assuming you are a salaried employee and you are purchasing your first home they would ask for:
- ☑️ Signed Application Form, Privacy Act form completed by all borrowers
- ☑️ Identification documents: Current Medicare + Drivers license, or Australian passport
- ☑️ 3 Months Bank statements showing your salary credits with the name of your employer into your personal transaction account
- ☑️ ️3 Months statements showing all continuing liabilities – i.e. any open credit card, personal loan, store card or overdraft statements
- ☑️ 2 Most Recent Computer Generated Payslips
- ☑️ Evidence of your Genuine Savings, being statements to show the funds have been held for more than 3 months
- ☑️ Signed Contract of Sale
Where they are a bit different from some of the bigger lenders are requiring more information if you are in casual employment, contract employment or if you receive bonuses and commission.
Suncorp is a little bit more conservative around secondary income. You can download their application form here.
- ✳ If you are in casual employment, you need to be in the same role for at least 6 months, they will need your 2 most recent payslips AND most recent year’s PAYG Payment Summary (also known as a group certificate).
- ✳ If you are in contract employment, they need your 2 most recent payslips AND a copy of your employment contract with evidence of the remaining contract term.
- ✳ If you receive a bonus, regular commission or over time they will need your 2 most recent payslips AND see evidence of at least 3 months minimum employment with the same employer with the last 2 year’s PAYG Payment Summary (also known as a group certificate) to use this income at 80% of the amount. So if you received $10,000 in bonuses, Suncorp will only use $8,000 towards servicing your loan.
|Secondary income||Include at % of original income amount|
|Overtime and Allowances earned continuously ≥12 months||80%|
|Term Deposit Interest (where held as collateral)||80%|
|Dividends (excluding securities held for margin lending)||80%|
|Income from overseas (listed currencies only)||70%|
|Bonuses earned continuously ≥24 months||80%|
|Commissions earned continuously ≥6 months||80%|
|Seasonal income earned continuously ≥12 months||80%|
|Child maintenance to be received for >5 years||100%|
|Family Tax A & B||100%|
|Rental from family, boarders and rooms in owner-occupied properties||0%|
How much can I borrow from Suncorp?
Suncorp’s credit criteria are subject to change at any time, and all lending is up to credit verification and satisfactory approval but as an indication, we have run the following scenario through their borrowing calculator:
- ✅ A single person living in Brisbane (In the 4000 postcode)
- ✅ Earning $70,000 PAYG salary income
- ✅ Average monthly expenses of $2,000
- ✅ Has a credit card of $5,000 and no other debts
- ✅ Assuming this person has a 20% deposit as genuine savings
- Figures as at 14 January 2019, subject to credit criteria and will change without notification.
We run the figures through our serviceability calculator and got the following results:
The results above show Suncorp is at the lower end of borrowing capacity when compared to the list of other lenders and is around $30,000 lower than the top with a maximum borrowing capacity of up to $318,100.
In other words, if the same person applied with Suncorp versus the lender at the top, the maximum amount Suncorp would lend that person is $318,100 – compared to the bank at the top who would lend up to $348,150.
These figures are indicative and would be subject to meeting credit criteria, valuation and satisfactory verification of all supporting documentation. They are accurate as at 14 January 2019 and subject to change without any further notification.
Would you like to know your borrowing capacity? Chat with our home loan experts to see what you can afford.
How much does LMI cost with Suncorp?
Lenders Mortgage Insurance is much cheaper with Suncorp compared to other lenders in the market.
Read More: Try and calculate your LMI Costs using our LMI Calculator.
What else does Suncorp offer?
One point of difference Suncorp has from other banks like BOQ or Gateway Bank is its network of insurance brands which you might have heard of. They also own AAMI, GIO, Bingle, Terri Scheer and Vero Insurance to name a few.
Suncorp also has a good branch presence in Queensland, but significantly fewer locations interstate.
What are some Suncorp Home Loan Customer Reviews?
As we covered above, Suncorp’s customer satisfaction ratings are ok at 78% compared to some other major banks who rank in the low 70s.
The reviews of Suncorp Bank online can be fairly mixed, this is because the majority are customers who have applied directly with the branch network.
In our experience, Suncorp has been very good to deal with and have helped many of our customers get a great outcome.
How does Suncorp compare to other banks?
Overall each Bank, and Credit Union has its own advantages and disadvantages which will come down to your personal situation.
Ready to take the next step toward buying? We’re happy to help. Schedule a call today with a Home Loan Expert from Hunter Galloway, the home of home buyers.