Nila Sweeney

Trawling through hundreds of mortgage products to find the best loan is no easy feat, particularly for those just starting out in their journey towards property ownership. To help you along, the team at Your Mortgage magazine has done some of the legwork for you, judging a wide range of home loan products to bring Australia's best value products.

What makes this assessment different and relevant? First of all, we've gone beyond the traditional method of using comparison rates to measure the true cost of a loan. Comparison rates, which are touted as an effective means of comparing apples with apples, have left many consumers understandably confused and unsure of how to evaluate mortgage products. For example, just comparing rates does not take into account big costs such as deferred establishment fees - the fees charged by lenders when you pay off your loan within three to five years - in the standard formula. This fee can often be thousands of dollars, making it misleading for consumers going just by rate comparison alone to gauge how much the home loan will truly cost them should they decide to exit before the loan term expires.

Basic comparison rate charts don't take into account these background costs, however we've come up with a way to include them. Using our formula, our analysis reveals how much a given mortgage product will cost you in these three scenarios: if you held the loan for three, five or 10 years. We've also included all the fees charged when you take a mortgage - fees such as upfront fees, ongoing fees, deferred establishment fees and other fees charged when you exit your mortgage. Although not always true, borrowers usually get what they pay for. A lower rate may come with higher fees and less flexibility, as well as more risk to you.

Borrowers need to understand the bigger picture. Many lenders will tell you they're offering low rates, but we put them all to task by analyzing the numbers with a more in-depth comparison for you.

The result is the true cost of the loan. Your Mortgage is now proud to present the best value home loans in Australia over three, five and 10 years.

This list is a great way to get started, however please remember it is only a guide, and should not be used solely in choosing your loan product. Rates are subject to change, as well as the features.

Best value basic variable loans
Bank Winner: St George Bank Basic Variable Loan
Non Bank Winner: Wizard Home Loans Rate Breaker Loan

To get the full list of winners, read the January issue of Your Mortgage magazine, out on sale on 12 December.

It can be confusing to know whether to get a variable rate or fixed rate mortgage, and what features are important. That's why it's important to not only check the right rates, but make sure that you're getting the right features in your home loan. Get help choosing the right home loan