Photo by Chris Barbalis on Unsplash
Photo by Chris Barbalis on Unsplash
Commonwealth Bank has announced its new Green Mortgage Initiative for the bank's most energy efficient mortgage customers.
CBA Chief Executive Officer Matt Comyn announced the scheme at the Trans-Tasman Business Circle lunch.
Mr Comyn said the bank is seeing strong investor demand for green bonds and plans to pass on the benefits of this to customers in the future through a variety of initiatives, including cashback offers to CommBank mortgage holders with solar panels installed.
Commonwealth Bank’s Executive General Manager of Home Buying, Daniel Huggins said the bank is committed to developing more innovative solutions to help customers who are looking for green, energy efficient opportunities.
“We are always looking for innovative ways to support our customers, which is why we are launching this new initiative. The Green Mortgage initiative will provide a $500 cashback to customers who have certified solar panels installed,” Mr Huggins said.
“We understand many of our home loan customers could reduce their energy volume and usage, and pay less or become net positive for energy by investing in energy efficient devices.”
Mr Huggins said it’s just one of many actions the bank is taking to encourage home owners to make more eco-friendly choices.
“We want to support more of our customers who wish to install small scale renewables by reducing their installation costs and payback periods.”
The Green Mortgage initiative is set to be launched within the coming weeks.
It comes amid the bank’s announcement to dramatically overhaul the CommBank app, launching a suite of digital banking services to help customers make better financial decisions.
Mr Comyn said the revamped app will be highly personalised to each customer’s banking needs.
“That could be how your spending compares with last month. It might be reminding you about when your credit card payment is coming up. It could be telling you to take action because you have overdrawn your account. It could be helping you pick up where you left off in a loan application.
“One of the other features we have added is trying to help customers identify and receive benefits they’re entitled to. This can be as simple as a pensioner who does not know they are entitled to a benefit,” he said.
CommBank reports spike in mortgage applications following the election
Mr Comyn also said the bank has seen a spike in applications for home loans following the Coalition’s shock election victory.
“We did have the strongest week in applications that we have seen in more than six months. It did feel – certainly from a demand perspective – that there is quite a shift in sentiment,” he said.
Expectations of a rate cut from the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) have increased following the election result. Mr Comyn said the bank expects an imminent rate cut, but said he doesn’t think it will necessarily contribute towards market sentiment lifting.
“Fiscal stimulus, cuts to taxes, and increases in sentiment tend to have a much bigger transmission effect to the broader economy.”
The entire market was not considered in selecting the above products. Rather, a cut-down portion of the market has been considered which includes retail products from at least the big four banks, the top 10 customer-owned institutions and Australia’s larger non-banks:
- The big four banks are: ANZ, CBA, NAB and Westpac
- The top 10 customer-owned Institutions are the ten largest mutual banks, credit unions and building societies in Australia, ranked by assets under management in November 2020. They are (in descending order): Great Southern Bank, Newcastle Permanent, Heritage Bank, Peoples’ Choice Credit Union, Teachers Mutual Bank, Greater Bank, IMB Bank, Beyond Bank, Bank Australia and P&N Bank.
- The larger non-bank lenders are those who (in 2020) has more than $9 billion in Australian funded loans and advances. These groups are: Resimac, Pepper, Liberty and Firstmac.
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*Comparison rate is based on a loan of $150,000 over a term of 25 years. Please note the comparison rate only applies to the examples given. Different loan amounts and terms will result in different comparison rates. Costs such as redraw fees and costs savings, such as fee waivers, are not included in the comparison rate but may inﬂuence the cost of the loan.
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