If not the Big 4, then who?
And with that, people are now asking who else are available. If not the Big 4, then who? The good news folks, is there is heaps of choice - all with really good loans and great rates. We like these guys because they are starting to push the envelope around doing it differently, using technology to deliver better service and with a strong dash of customer-first attitude.
So here’s our Top 10 for you in no particular order:
ING came to Australia in 1999 and they tell us they have grown to become Australia's 5th largest mortgage lender. They pioneered branchless banking in Oz and are famous for their high interest online savings account. They’re a bank who serve customers all across the country and are based in Sydney.
These guys are one of Australia biggest finance companies, specialising in banking & insurance. They offer full banking services with a large branch network. They were pretty excited to win Money magazine’s ‘Bank of the Year 2015’, as it was the first time a non-major bank had won the award. Suncorp was founded in 1902, and is now Australia’s fifth largest bank with a head office in Brisbane.
Macquarie is one of Australia’s leading Investment banks, having been established in Sydney in 1969. Despite offering financial services across 28 countries worldwide, they still offer home loans & normal banking services to everyday Aussies . Whilst they don’t have their own branch network, they have a pretty damn good digital banking platform.
These guys are like banking royalty in WA. Having been around since 1895 they now not only support all of Western Australia from their Perth base, but Australians all across the country. Providing for both homeowners and business owners, their service is like a small bank but with the backing of a big bank, easily making them one of the top banks in Australia.
A collaboration of credit unions in Tasmania & Queensland, who aim to create better services for their members. MyState Bank is another stock-market listed bank, who are starting to disrupt banking across the country with their fresh take on banking from their Hobart base. A full service bank with a growing digital presence, this is a contender that we think you’ll hear more about in the future.
With origins dating back to 1877, Adelaide Bank is part of the stock market-listed Bendigo & Adelaide Bank group who are well practised in providing top notch homelending and banking. Whilst they don’t have their own branch network, they punch well above their weight with great products supported by their digital banking services.
ME is a different type of bank. Owned by 26 Industry Super funds, they are branchless,online-only bank that are award winning. With a head office in Melbourne since they were established in 1999, they cover all bases with home loans, credit cards & deposits. If there was one lender that was a picture of the future, we reckon it’s these guys. Oh, and we love their marketing campaigns too!
When a few community-based regional Queensland building societies get together,you end up with the Bundaberg based Auswide Bank. Another stock market listed bank, they are renowned for their highly rated service - the kind of service you’dexpect but struggle to experience. They have the products with all the trimmings that you need, they just don’t seem to charge for them the way others do. A bank to seriously consider, particularly as they continue to improve their digital banking.
Dare we say it, BOQ is the sleeping giant of Australian banking. With foundations in Brisbane dating back to 1874, they have a national banking network, with branches in every state & territory across the country. A full service personal & business bank, they are another stock market listed lender that doesn’t feel the need to charge the way some of the big guys do and still manages to offer really good service. They are known for their local touch and doing it a bit differently.
AMP are based in Sydney and tell us they are the leading independent wealth management company in Australia and New Zealand. After establishing in 1849 the business understood that because our home is part of all of our personal wealth, it made sense for them to create AMP Bank as the specialist residential banking arm of AMP. With over five million customers we reckon they might know a thing or two about what Australians want in a home loan.
So that’s our top 10 folks. Some pretty cool ones, right? We reckon there might be a few that you didn’t even know did home loans.But we actually had a quite a difficult time in the office, trying to limit it to just these 10; and felt we couldn’t finish there, so here are just a couple more. Let’s call them our "Reserve Bench".
St George Bank
Coming out of the famous St George district in Sydney in 1937, (where Don Bradman played) this is one of Australia’s most highly-regarded banks. Well known for their amazing service, little has changed with their big-bank backing. They often have market-leading loans and can lend where others generally won’t. It’s hard to find someone say a bad word about St George.
Most banks want squeaky clean customers, whereas Pepper understands that life happens and things don’t always go according to plan. Since 2001, from their head office in Sydney, Pepper has become one of Australia’s leading alternative lenders, for people who don’t tick the traditional boxes for a home loan. We normally don’t quote lender’s marketing here but their line of ‘in a world of no, they found a way of saying yes really did resonate with us.
These guys are Australia’s largest customer-owned bank, meaning if you’re a customer then you’re also a part owner! Cool, huh? They have been around since 1875 and are based in Toowoomba, yet have offices all across the country to provide their full banking services. They are renowned for their customer service and are well on their way to fully developing their digital banking services.
Firstmac are a highly-rated Brisbane based non-bank lender, which means their focus is home loans and they are really really good at that. They have been around since 1985 and see themselves as strong competition to the Big 4 lenders. But we think they are more than just another alternative - they have very competitive interest rates and because they don’t have a branch network, they invest in technology and focus on a great online experience and service.
If Macquarie is one of Australia’s leading investment banks, then Citibank is one of the world’s leading. Having set up operations in Sydney in 1985 they were the first foreign bank to be granted a banking licence in Oz. Utilising their international experience infinancial services they specialise in credit cards, mortgages & insurance.
If you want to know who didn’t make our best-of-the-best list, but are still available, have a squiz at our lenders