The Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute's (AHURI) 'Renting in the time of COVID-19' research paper also found about one in eight renters had withdrawn their super to 'make ends meet', while a third of renters accessed their savings.

Looking to compare low-rate, variable home loans? Below are a handful of low-rate loans in the market.

Update resultsUpdate
LenderHome LoanInterest Rate Comparison Rate* Monthly Repayment Repayment type Rate Type Offset Redraw Ongoing Fees Upfront Fees LVR Lump Sum Repayment Additional Repayments Split Loan Option TagsFeaturesLinkCompare
6.04% p.a.
6.06% p.a.
$2,408
Principal & Interest
Variable
$0
$530
90%
Featured 4.6 Star Customer Ratings
  • No monthly or ongoing fees
  • Unlimited free redraw
  • No application fee
5.99% p.a.
5.90% p.a.
$2,396
Principal & Interest
Variable
$0
$0
80%
Featured Apply In Minutes
  • No application or ongoing fees. Annual rate discount
  • Unlimited redraws & additional repayments. LVR <80%
  • A low-rate variable home loan from a 100% online lender. Backed by the Commonwealth Bank.
6.14% p.a.
6.16% p.a.
$2,434
Principal & Interest
Variable
$0
$250
60%
Featured Unlimited Redraws
  • No annual fees - None!
  • Get fast pre-approval
  • Unlimited additional repayments free of charge
  • Redraw freely - Access your additional payments when you need them
  • Home loan specialists available today
Important Information and Comparison Rate Warning

Base criteria of: a $400,000 loan amount, variable, fixed, principal and interest (P&I) home loans with an LVR (loan-to-value) ratio of at least 80%. However, the ‘Compare Home Loans’ table allows for calculations to be made on variables as selected and input by the user. Some products will be marked as promoted, featured or sponsored and may appear prominently in the tables regardless of their attributes. All products will list the LVR with the product and rate which are clearly published on the product provider’s website. Monthly repayments, once the base criteria are altered by the user, will be based on the selected products’ advertised rates and determined by the loan amount, repayment type, loan term and LVR as input by the user/you. *The Comparison rate is based on a $150,000 loan over 25 years. Warning: this comparison rate is true only for this example and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate. Rates correct as of . View disclaimer.

Average super withdrawal requests averaged $7,401, according to the latest prudential regulator statistics.

Approximately 25% of tenants were "dependent on a government allowance or pension as their main source of income". 

The state with the highest dependency among tenants was in Tasmania at 39%, followed by South Australia at 36%. 

One in three renters had requested or were planning to ask for a rent reduction or deferral

Among those who had requested a change, 42% were granted a reduction, 17% entered into a rent deferral arrangement, but 30% had their request knocked back, and 6% were still waiting to hear back.

Research lead Professor Emma Baker from the University of Adelaide said the pandemic has changed the way we think about housing and renting.

"The pandemic, and the subsequent economic and social lockdown, has rapidly changed our housing system: the way we use our homes, our ability to afford them, and the role of government safety nets," she said.

"The pandemic has placed many people in the rental market at risk; they face uncertainty, tenure insecurity, financial hardship and significant mental health effects."

About 28% of survey respondents also reported they would need ongoing financial assistance in the next 12 months, however 40% said they would not, while 31% were uncertain.

Professor Baker pointed to a grim picture if there was not a vaccine available soon.

"With the on-going health and economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic still evolving, if these savings and superannuation buffers eventually run out, renters will be entirely dependent on packages of government support," she said.

"In the absence of an effective and accessible vaccine, it is likely that the situation for renters captured in this mid-2020 snapshot will be different—and almost certainly worse—by mid-2021."

If you or anyone you know needs help:

Fewer COVID cases and lockdowns equal better outcomes for renters

The states aren't equal when it comes to the relationship between COVID-19 cases and associated lockdowns, and the uptake of government assistance.

In total, just one in twenty survey respondents had accessed JobKeeper, while 7% accessed JobSeeker, since March 2020.

In Victoria, 6% accessed JobKeeper, while just 1% accessed it in the Northern Territory, a jurisdiction relatively untouched by COVID-19.

Northern Territory renters were also less dependent on government assistance as their main source of income - totalling just 13%, compared to 21% in Victoria, or 30% in Queensland.

Additional demand for broader assistance was also "more pronounced" in southern states, with 18% of ACT households needing some assistance, along with 16% of Victorian households.

Just over one in six respondents also reported accessing income support for the first time. 

Need somewhere to store cash and earn interest? The table below features introductory and ongoing savings accounts with some of the highest interest rates on the market.

Update resultsUpdate
BankSavings AccountBase Interest Rate Max Interest Rate Total Interest Earned Introductory Term Minimum Amount Maximum Amount Minimum Monthly Deposit Minimum Opening Deposit ATM Access Joint Application TagsFeaturesLinkCompare
4.40% p.a.
5.75% p.a.
Intro rate for 4 months
then 4.40% p.a.
$980
4 months
$0
$250,000
$0
$0
Featured
  • Bonus rate for the first 4 months from account opening
  • No account keeping fees
  • No minimum balance
0.55% p.a.
Bonus rate of 4.95%
Conditions apply.
5.50% p.a.
$1,128
$0
$100,000
$1,000
$0
  • Deposit at least $1,000+ each month from an external source
  • Make 5 or more eligible transactions
  • Grow your savings balance each month
1.20% p.a.
Bonus rate of 4.20%
Conditions apply.
5.40% p.a.
$1,107
$0
$250,000
$1,000
$0
  • Earn up to 5.40% pa by depositing $1,000 in the previous month
  • No account fees
  • Easy access to your money
4.75% p.a.
5.35% p.a.
Intro rate for 4 months
then 4.75% p.a.
$1,001
4 months
$0
$249,999
$0
$0
Featured
  • A high-interest online savings account with no monthly fees, easy withdrawals and award-winning digital banking
  • No withdrawal notice periods or interest rate penalties
  • Save up to 10% on eGift cards at over 50 retailers with Macquarie Marketplace
0.50% p.a.
Bonus rate of 4.85%
Conditions apply.
5.35% p.a.
$1,097
$1
$50,000
$500
$1
  • Maximum Age - 24
Bonus rate of 5.50%
Conditions apply.
5.50% p.a.
$1,128
$0
$100,000
$0
$0
Featured *Rate varies on savings amount
  • Deposit $500 per month to get bonus interest
  • No balance growth needed or card transactions necessary.
  • Tiered bonus rates apply. Earn our best rate on your first $100k. (TMDs at ubank.com.au)
  • 5.50% p.a. available on total savings up to $100K.
  • 5.00% p.a. applies to savings between $100K-250K.
0.05% p.a.
Bonus rate of 4.95%
Conditions apply.
5.00% p.a.
$1,023
$1
$250,000
$20
$0
  • No fees or penalties for withdrawing money
  • Savings guaranteed up to $250,000
  • Maximise your savings and reach your goals faster with Auto-Savings
0.05% p.a.
Bonus rate of 5.45%
Conditions apply.
5.50% p.a.
$1,128
$0
$50,000
$1,000
$0
For customers aged 14-35 years
0.05% p.a.
Bonus rate of 5.30%
Conditions apply.
5.35% p.a.
$1,097
$0
$250,000
$1,000
$0
Important Information and Comparison Rate Warning

All products with a link to a product provider’s website have a commercial marketing relationship between us and these providers. These products may appear prominently and first within the search tables regardless of their attributes and may include products marked as promoted, featured or sponsored. The link to a product provider’s website will allow you to get more information or apply for the product. By de-selecting “Show online partners only” additional non-commercialised products may be displayed and re-sorted at the top of the table. For more information on how we’ve selected these “Sponsored”, “Featured” and “Promoted” products, the products we compare, how we make money, and other important information about our service, please click here. Rates correct as of . View disclaimer.

Queensland's potential eviction problem

As it stands, Queensland is the only state to not extend the moratorium on residential tenancy evictions past September.

However, it has extended the moratorium for commercial tenancies.

This has led tenant advocacy organisation Better Renting to call the scenario a "bad-tasting meal".

"If they’re [Queensland Government] not going to cook up something better, the least they could do is make sure that there’s enough to go round," Better Renting director Joel Dignam said.

"The Queensland Government has sent a clear message to people who rent: we’re not here for you.

"The virus didn’t vanish at the end of September, the economic impacts are still with us, yet people who rent are now again at the mercy of their landlord when it comes to evictions."

In September, housing minister Mick de Brenni cited Queensland's "economic strength" as reason for not extending the moratorium.

However, Queensland has the second-highest unemployment rate in the country as of August, the second-highest youth unemployment rate in the country at more than 15%, and nine of the ten leading postcodes for mortgage deferrals in Australia.

Unemployment in the state also went up to 7.7% September, up from 7.4% in August.

However, Queensland's state final demand (SFD) was -5.9% in the June quarter, ahead of Australia's GDP at -7.0%. 

Real Estate Institute of Queensland CEO Antonia Mercorella said in April that landlords were "thrown to the wolves".

Ms Mercorella also cited Queensland's relatively cheap median rental price for a three bedroom home at $360 a week as reason for not extending the moratorium.





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