Home buyers are hunting for the best variable home mortgage rates in the wake of the RBA leaving rates on hold.
Loan Market chief operating officer Dean Rushton said an examination of major mortgage industry web traffic based on research by global online competitive intelligence service Experian Hitwise had found a 29 per cent rise in searches containing “variable rate” since January 1, 2011.
Mr Rushton said Loan Market’s own website had also seen enquiries for variable rates jump by 35 per cent in the past month.
“The RBA has kept the cash rate at 4.75 per cent since its last increase in November last year and there’s no indication of another rate hike any time soon,” he said.
“The latest official home loan approval figures for February were down 5.6 per cent so that should keep the RBA on hold for at least a few more months and hopefully the rest of the year.”
Mr Rushton said the RBA staying on the sidelines was starting to give consumers more confidence about the direction of interest rates.
“Customers are becoming increasingly more confident about interest rates and where they sit right now and that’s even more reason for the RBA to stay on the bench,” he said.
“The gradual return of consumer confidence is resulting in customers being willing to take a risk on variable rates rather than lock themselves into a fixed rate despite some lenders reducing their fixed rate products.”