How Much Deposit Do You Need To Buy A House In Australia?

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People want to know how much deposit you need to buy a house or home in Australia.


Whether you plan to buy a residential or investment property, the first step to applying for a loan is knowing how much deposit you need.


The deposit is the money you contribute towards the buying price of the property. Usually, the home loan deposit ranges between 5% and 20% of your prospective property's worth.


If you are a first-time home buyer, this blog will help you calculate the deposit you must pay upfront, including ways to save for a deposit to buy your dream home sooner.



1. What Is A Home Loan Deposit?


A deposit is an initial sum you pay to the loan provider to secure a home loan. The size of your deposit is crucial in determining what loan you qualify for and the type of property you can afford.


  • With a larger deposit, you borrow less and pay less interest over the loan term, which, in turn, helps you close your loan faster. Furthermore, it dramatically reduces the Loan-To-Value ratio of your loan and makes you eligible for competitive deals.


  • If you have a smaller deposit, you may get a loan with a higher interest rate, which leads to higher repayments and a longer loan term. 



2. Why Do I Need A Deposit?


Mortgage lenders need to evaluate your ability to repay the debt with interest. Paying a deposit implies that you bear some risk, which ultimately puts the lender at a lesser risk in lending you a loan.


Most lenders require genuine savings as the deposit. In other words, the deposit is collected through regular contributions to a savings account over a couple of months.


Paying a deposit proves your discipline in saving money and assures them you will make regular repayments if your home loan is approved.



3. What Is The Minimum Deposit To Buy A House In Australia?


You need a deposit to get a home loan. It covers a percentage of the property price you wish to buy, while the loan covers the remaining property price.


Most home loan lenders lend up to 80% of the house price, and you will have to make an upfront deposit of only 20% of the property price.


Some lenders even lend up to 95% of the property value, allowing you to get a loan with just a 5% upfront deposit. However, in this case, you will need to pay for a Lenders Mortgage Insurance.


Property Price 5% Deposit 10% Deposit 20% Deposit















$1 million




Loan Percentage




LMI needed?






4. Deposit Sizes Based On The Capital City


Here is how much you need to save per capital city based on your deposit size.


Capital City Average Price 5% Deposit (95% loan) 10% Deposit (90% loan) 15% Deposit (85% loan) 20% Deposit (80% loan)




LMI Required?







You can use the home purchasing costs calculator to get a fair estimate of the costs of purchasing a property in your state.



5. Do You Need 10% Or 20% For House Deposit?


Several lenders with a comprehensive range of home loan packages offer loans at a 20% or above deposit as it lowers their risk.


However, you can find a limited number of lenders flexible on the deposit amount. They may accept deposits ranging from 5% to 20% or more of a property's value.


So, it is better to have at least a 20% deposit, but you can also get a home loan with as little as an upfront 5% deposit.


Is it worth pursuing a loan with a smaller deposit? A smaller deposit lets you enter the market sooner, but it makes your loan expensive due to a higher interest rate.


For deposits below 20%, you will have to pay for LMI premiums, which, in turn, makes the loan more expensive.



6. How Do I Determine How Much I Need To Save For A Deposit?


The golden rule is that the debt you owe should be at most six times your gross annual income.


For instance, a person earning a gross annual income of $65,000 should consider only those properties around $390,000.


Considering your income and expenses, you can use a borrowing power calculator to determine how much you can afford to borrow.



7. How Do I Determine How Much I Can Borrow?


Consider the following factors to determine how much you can borrow for a mortgage:


  1. The type of properties you look at

  2. Income, financial commitments, and living expenses

  3. Deposit savings

  4. Upfront costs:


  • Legal fees

  • Stamp duty

  • Moving costs 

  • LMI insurance (if needed) 


  1. Credit rating

  2. Support for first-home buyers like The First Home Owner Grant 

  3. Type, interest rate, and length of home loan

  4. The property price 



8. Tips To Buy A Home In Australia



Know The Price Range


It is the first step to buying a home. Use the repayment calculator to calculate your price range. It helps you shortlist potential properties that are within your budget.



Work Out What Deposit You Need


Having found a house that fits your budget, it is time to determine how much down payment you can make. A larger deposit translates to lesser borrowing, a low-interest rate, and potentially lower monthly repayments.


Additionally, with a smaller deposit, you may require taking out a Lenders Mortgage Insurance, which is an added cost to your loan. In all, it takes longer to pay off the loan.



Know The Upfront Costs


Look at the possible costs you may incur when buying a home. It includes:


  • Stamp duty

  • Home insurance

  • Pest and building inspections

  • Mortgage establishment and registration fee

  • Moving costs

  • Council rates 

  • Strata fees

  • Conveyancing and legal fees

  • Loan application fee

  • Valuation fees

  • LMI (where applicable)



Understand Factors That Can Impact Your Loan and Interest Rate


Consider factors affecting the loan amount a lender can lend you and the interest rate they might charge.




Know Your Maximum Borrowing Power


Consider your situation, income, expenses, lifestyle, credit score, and other factors to estimate your borrowing power. A borrowing power calculator can help you do it quickly and easily using.



9. Is It Worth Paying Lenders Mortgage Insurance To Buy A Loan?


The amount of LMI the lender charges you vary based on the:


  • How much do you borrow

  • The property value

  • Loan Percentage 


It implies:


  • An LMI is higher when you borrow 90% of the property's worth than 85%.


  • An LMI of 85% on a $900,000 worth property is more than an LMI of 85% on a property of $750,000.


Some people are fine paying the LMI as it enables them to get into the property market sooner. Saving the minimum 20% deposit may take longer.


While others feel LMI only protects the lenders and does not benefit borrowers, so they avoid paying LMI when buying or expanding their property portfolio.


Getting a cash gift to keep the loan amount below 80% or a guarantor who can use their home as equity can help you cut down the extra expense of LMI.



10. Is It Worth Getting A Loan With A Smaller House Deposit?


There are downsides to paying a smaller house deposit to secure a loan, such as high-interest rates and monthly repayments.


Ultimately, how much you can afford to save for a deposit depends on your financial and personal circumstances. Weighing the pros and cons of choosing a smaller deposit can help you decide what is right.



11. Can I Get A Loan With A Smaller Deposit And No LMI?


Yes. A few government incentives and first-home buyer initiatives enable first-home buyers to buy a property with a smaller deposit.


  • The First Home Loan Deposit Scheme – This federal government initiative allows buyers to buy a new or existing home with a deposit as low as 5%, and the government guarantees the rest amount up to 15%. Property price caps are applicable.


  • Guarantor Home Loans


You can apply for a guarantor home loan with a small deposit, provided that your parents guarantee the remaining loan amount by keeping the assets or equity they own in the property as a security against the loan.


Besides, the guarantor must have a stable income and good credit history to prove that they can repay the loan if needed.


  • The New Home Guarantee (NHG) – The scheme allows eligible first-home buyers to buy a new home with a 5% deposit. The government guarantees the remaining 15% amount.


  • The Family Home Guarantee (single-parent house deposit) – The scheme permits eligible single parents to buy a home with a 2% deposit and avoid LMI. The federal government guarantees 18 per cent of a deposit. Note that a maximum yearly income cap of $125,000 is applicable.


  • Regional Home Guarantee – As an extension of the First Home Guarantee, the scheme permits eligible buyers to buy a newly-built home outside metro regions with a smaller deposit of as little as 5%. It saves the borrowers from paying lenders' mortgage insurance as the government acts as a guarantor on the part of the loan.


  • Rent-to-Buy or Rent-To-Own schemes allow you to purchase a property within three to five years without paying a deposit. After this period, you pay to rent and 'option-to-buy' fees and apply for a loan when the rental period ends.



11. How Can I Use My Equity As a Deposit To Buy A Loan?


If you already own a property and wish to buy a second one, you can use the equity on the property you own to fund an upfront deposit instead of using your savings. A property valuation can help you determine how much equity you own in your home.


When paying through equity, the property owner may get approved for a loan of 80% to 90% of the existing property's worth.


If you have a loan against the current property, you can use the money left after paying out the original loan as a deposit for the second property.


For example, if your home is worth $500,000, and you owe $100,000 on the mortgage, you can borrow around 80% of the amount left after paying the mortgage, i.e., 80% of $400,000, which comes to about $320,000.


Though genuine savings is optional if you own a property already, lenders consider any negative gearing you have on the existing property when computing your borrowing power.



12. Simple Ways To Save Up For A House Deposit


If you are in the planning phase of a house purchase, you must come up with ways to save effectively for a deposit.


Here are a few things you can do to build your savings and realize your deposit goal quickly:



Set Your Savings Goal


Achieving a goal becomes easy when you set short and medium-term milestones and work towards achieving them. It is also essential to assess your progress from time to time.



Plan and Set a Timeframe


Think about how much you can realistically save regularly, and based on that, set a time frame to realize your objective.



Settle Your Debts


Pay off your high-interest loan debts like credit cards, or consolidate them into a single debt with a low-interest rate.


It helps reduce your monthly debt payment, ease monthly budgeting expenses, and save for a deposit. Moreover, your chances of approval for a mortgage also improve.



Save More Progressively


Set aside a portion of money from your salary towards your house deposit. Besides your salary, you can also save from other income sources such as commissions, tax refunds, or bonuses.



Reduce Expenses


Find ways to lessen your expenses and save a small amount daily. Use the accumulated savings to fund your house deposit. You don't need to reduce costs drastically; when done consistently, little savings can become a corpus over time.



Do The Math


Before entering into the real estate market and browsing through potential properties, take time to work out:


  • How much deposit can you manage to pay upfront?

  • How much loan can you borrow to pay comfortably over the loan term

  • The upfront and ongoing costs of a home loan

  • Your credit and current financial situation 


It is beneficial to get the professional assistance of a regional mortgage broker to uncomplicate your home-buying journey.



13. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)



Can I Buy A House With A 5% Deposit?


After paying for rent, groceries, and bills, it is not easy to save that much that can help you pay a home deposit.


Lenders understand this; some offer 5% deposit home loans in Australia. Such loans allow applicants to borrow over 80% of the property's value, up to 95% of the property price. So, you only need to pay a 5% deposit and the associated purchase costs. This way, getting a home loan becomes a lot more doable.


Considering the higher risks involved, lenders charge a high-interest rate and require a Lenders Mortgage Insurance to cover the bank if you default on your home loan. You can pay the insurance as a one-time upfront payment or add it to your home loan and spread it over the loan term.



How Much Deposit Do You Need For A $400000 House?


You usually need at least 20% of the overall house price, i.e., $80000 as a deposit. However, some lenders may be willing to lend you for as low as 5% of the house value, i.e., $20000.



How Much Deposit Do You Need For A $300000 House In Australia?


Depending on the lender, you need between 5% to 20% of the house value to pay as a minimum upfront.


Usually, lenders need you to pay at least 20% of the property price, i.e., $60000 as a deposit without LMI. However, you can find lenders who lend you with as low as 5% of the property price, i.e., $15000



Can I Buy A House With a $20000 Deposit?


Yes, considering it a 5% deposit, you can buy a house worth up to $400,000.


Keep in mind that you will need to pay LMI as per the lender's terms and conditions. A loan repayment calculator is a helpful tool to help find out how much you can save with a particular deposit.



Is $25000 Enough For A House Deposit?


Yes. Whether the amount is adequate depends on the type of house you need.


With a 5% deposit of $25000, you can borrow a loan equivalent to 95% of the house value, i.e., $475000. So, by making an upfront payment of $25k, you can buy a property worth $500,000.



Can I Buy A House With a $10000 Deposit?


Yes. You can get a loan to buy a property worth $200,000 by paying a 5% deposit of the property price in advance. Remember that you also need good credit and financial state to get approved for the loan.



Can You Get A Loan Without A Deposit?


It is not possible to borrow 100% of the property value. You can seek assistance from an immediate and adult family member who can be a guarantor on the loan. This way, you can borrow the entire amount along with the costs of completing the purchase.



Do I Need Genuine Savings To Get A Loan?


Your savings pattern is crucial as it shows the bank how capable you are of meeting your loan repayments.


Most lenders require a deposit to comprise some percentage of genuine savings, i.e., the money you have saved on your own over at least three months.


The rest of the deposit could include the following:


  • Money received from a generous party, 

  • A monetary gift from your parents, 

  • Inherited money, 

  • The first homeowner's grant and other first-home buyer incentives, 

  • The sales of assets such as shares,

  • Tax refunds, or

  • First Home Saver Accounts


Some lenders waive this genuine savings requirement if you have been staying in rented accommodation and have a track record of paying rent on time.


Showing 12 months of confirmed rent by way of a tenant rental ledger shows consistent behaviour to the lender and boosts your loan application if you have less than 5% in genuine savings.



14. Conclusion


Owning a home may not be easy, but a good strategy and a little planning can make it happen.


You should pay a 20% deposit; saving this can take time. You can take out a home loan with a smaller deposit through the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme, LMI, or New Home Guarantee.


Whichever option you choose, ensure you read the pros and cons of each option to make the right move.


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