Westpac Banking Corporation and its subsidiaries—BankSA, Bank of Melbourne, and St George—have announced a wide range of changes to home loan products across the board.

Westpac has increased the rates on its fixed-rate investment property loans, as well as SMSF and non-resident fixed investment property loans with interest-only repayments, by 20 basis points. These changes came into effect on Monday.

The Sydney-headquartered bank also updated its customer identification and verification process, meaning brokers will now have to ask borrowers for tax residency information. 

Under the Common Reporting Standard (CRS), banks such as Westpac are obligated to collect and maintain information about the foreign tax residency of their customers. Henceforth, new mortgage customers will need to confirm if they are tax residents of foreign countries.

The collection of this data is compulsory when finalising a customer’s loan application with a branch. If a customer confirms that he is a tax resident of another country, then the country will have to be noted and his Tax Identification Number (TIN) will have to be collected.

Changes across Westpac’s subsidiaries

At BankSA, Bank of Melbourne, and St George Bank, a number of changes have been made to interest rates across an array of owner-occupier and investment products, effective since Monday.

For standard fixed-rate principal and interest mortgages, the three-year fixed-rate for owner-occupiers has dropped by 21 basis points, while the three-year fixed-rate for residential investment has dropped by 30 basis points.

The interest rate for these lenders’ residential investment standard fixed-rate interest-only loans has increased by 20 basis points for terms between one and five years.

A similar increase of 20 basis points has also been implemented across all portfolio fixed-rate loans, of one- to five-year terms.

Westpac’s subsidiaries have also extended the current $1,500 Refinance Cashback offer for owner-occupiers and investors. This was previously due to expire on May 31. Those eligible will need to refinance from outside Westpac or its subsidiaries.