Government fees when refinancing property in Sydney

Understanding Refinancing Home Loan

First off, let's get a clear picture of what refinancing a home loan actually means. In simple terms, it's when you replace your current home loan with a new one. This could be with your existing bank or a
completely different one. The new loan pays off the old one, and then you start making repayments on the new loan.

Now, you might be wondering, why would anyone want to go through all that hassle? Well, there are a couple of reasons. The first one is the potential to save money. If you can get a lower interest rate on your
new loan than what you're currently paying, you could end up saving a significant amount over the life of the loan.

The second reason is the ability to switch banks. Maybe you're not happy with the service at your current bank, or perhaps another bank is offering a better deal. Either way, refinancing gives you the flexibility to move your loan to a bank that suits your needs better.

Benefits of Refinancing

Now that we understand why homeowners consider refinancing, let's look at some of the potential benefits.

The first one, as we've already mentioned, is the possibility of lower interest rates. This is often the main driver for people to refinance. If you can secure a lower rate, it could mean paying less interest
over the life of the loan, which can add up to substantial savings.

The second benefit is the ability to reduce your debt faster. If you refinance to a lower interest rate but keep your repayments at the same amount, you'll be paying off more of the principal each month. This means you could potentially pay off your loan quicker.

However, it's important to note that there may be limits on repayment amounts with a fixed interest rate home loan. This is something you'll need to check with your lender.

Government Fees for Refinancing Property in Sydney

In Sydney, there are several government fees involved in refinancing a home loan. These include stamp duty, registration fees, and transfer fees.

Stamp duty is a tax levied by the NSW government on the transfer of property. The amount varies depending on the value of the property. Registration fees are charged by the NSW Land Registry Services to register the change of mortgagee on the title of the property. Transfer fees are charged to cover the administrative costs of transferring the loan from one lender to another.

Costs involved in Refinancing

While refinancing can have some great benefits, it's not without its costs. The first one to consider is the closing costs of your current loan. This could include discharge fees and break costs if you're
ending a fixed-rate loan early.

Next, there are the costs of setting up the new loan. These could include application fees, valuation fees, and legal fees. It's important to factor these costs in when deciding whether refinancing is the right move for you.

Additional considerations in the refinancing process

Beyond the direct costs of refinancing, there are a few other considerations to keep in mind. One of these is the potential for a repeated Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI) payment. If you borrowed more than 80% of the value of your home for your current loan, you likely had to pay LMI. If the equity in your home is still less than 20%, you may have to pay this again when you refinance.

Another consideration is early repayment fees. Some loans have fees if you pay them off before a certain period. If your current loan has these fees, you'll need to factor them into your decision.

Ongoing fees

When you refinance, you may be subject to ongoing fees. These can include monthly account-keeping fees, annual fees, redraw fees, and more. It's crucial to factor these into your calculations when considering whether refinancing is the right move for you.

Implications of interest rates changes

Interest rates can fluctuate, and this can have a significant impact on your repayments. If rates rise, your repayments could increase, potentially making your new loan more expensive than your old one. On the other hand, if rates fall, you could end up saving money.

Considerations before Refinancing

Personal financial considerations and long-term interest rates

Before refinancing, it's essential to consider your personal financial situation and the long-term interest rates. If rates are expected to rise in the future, it might be worth locking in a lower rate now. However, if rates are expected to fall, it might be better to wait.

Importance of reading fine prints and understanding all terms and conditions

Always read the fine print and understand all the terms and conditions before signing any loan agreement.  This will help you avoid any surprises down the line.

Advice from financial experts

Financial experts recommend having a clear goal in mind before refinancing. Whether it's to lower your monthly repayments, pay off your loan faster, or access equity, having a clear goal can help you choose the right loan for your needs.


Refinancing a home loan can offer several benefits, including potentially lower interest rates and the ability to switch banks. However, it also comes with costs, including closing the current loan, setting up a new loan, and potential repeated LMI payment.

Before deciding to refinance, it's crucial to consider your personal financial situation, long-term interest rates, and the fine print of any loan agreement.

About the author 

Harold Simmons

Harold is the founder and creator of the Asset Owners Discussion Project. He creates quality resources so investors can get access to information they wouldn't normally be able to access. He has been investing in real estate for almost three decades and is particularly experienced with mortgages and refinancing.

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