flagFounded: Founded in 1837, acquired by Westpac in 2008

businessOwned by: Owned by Westpac, operated by St George Bank

monetization_onFunded by: Retail deposits and wholesale capital markets

securityLMI Provider: Westpac LMI (WLMI) and Arch Capital (WLMI – A)

account_balanceLender type: Subsidiary of a major bank

BankSA is no stranger to trouble. It was bailed out by the Government of South Australia in 1992, sold to Advance Bank, taken over by St George in 1997 and then Westpac in 2008! Despite its coloured history, it’s a popular choice for South Australian residents who want a local brand with the strength of a major bank.

In effect, BankSA is actually just a rebranded version of St George Bank!

Westpac owns St George which in turn operates BankSA. So all of their home loans are the same as the ones offered by St George Bank. They’re a great option for first home buyers or first time investors.

How do BankSA’s home loans compare?

They’re great at

But they’ve got some drawbacks…

  • LMI can be expensive if you’re borrowing over 90% of the property value
  • People with bad credit
  • People outside of South Australia or the Northern Territory are referred to St George
  • Slow loan processing times when they’re busy

What home loans types does BankSA have?

BankSA has all the same home loans that St George Bank has, except for some minor difference in interest rates

Their professional package is known as the Advantage Package and it’s a great choice if you are borrowing over $250,000. In return for paying an annual fee you’ll get a discounted interest rate and a range of discounts on other products such as your offset account and credit card.

Their basic loan has no annual fees, but normally has a higher rate, and so it’s more suited to people who have smaller loans. BankSA has a Line of Credit known as a Portfolio loan which is a great choice for investors who buy and sell property or shares regularly.

Keep an eye out for specials that BankSA offers from time to time on fixed rate loans. When these are on offer, they can be some of the lowest in the market.

Their low doc loan isn’t the most competitive and has strict qualifying criteria so isn’t in high demand.

Tips for getting a great rate with BankSA

Most lenders don’t offer great interest rate discounts on 90% or 95% home loans, however BankSA is one of the exceptions!

If you don’t have a deposit then their family pledge loan is a type of guarantor loan that can be used to buy a home with help from your parents.

Use BankSA’s minimum required documents checklist to prepare for your home loan application.

Note: This is the latest documents checklist effective September 2017. Please refer to BankSA for their most up-to-date document requirements.

BankSA client story: Jeffrey & Glenice, SA


  • To refinance to a lender that will allow them to act as guarantor for their daughter’s home loan.


Refinance, discharge, guarantor, no deposit, guaranteeing an owner-occupied property.


Having paid off much of the mortgage on their home, Jeffrey and Glenice wanted to use some of their equity and act as guarantor for their daughter’s home loan.

Their daughter had saved her own deposit but by acting as as guarantor on her home loan, Jeffrey and his wife knew that their daughter could use her savings as a buffer to better manage her mortgage and even buy that new car that she really needed.

Although Jeffrey and Glenice were refinancing at 80% of the value of their home (LVR), the policy for their current lender, Ubank, wouldn’t allow them to take out a second mortgage, even it was just a limited guarantee.


Jeffrey and Glenice were able to discharge from Ubank and refinance their mortgage with BankSA.

They were approved for a guarantor loan due to the fact that they had substantial equity and their daughter had genuine savings.

They were even able to qualify for an application fee waiver and a discounted interest rate.

Compare BankSA to other lenders

Are you considering BankSA? One of our mortgage brokers can help you to compare your options!

Talk to one of our mortgage brokers by calling us on 1300 889 743 or complete our free assessment form.

  • Rowan

    I’m a first home buyer but I’m not sure if I qualify for the first home owner grant. Is there any easy way to find out?

  • Hey Rowan,

    A very simple way of finding out if you’re eligible for FHOG or any other government benefits such as stamp duty exemptions is by using the FHOG calculator on our website. Please do read the extra info on the page too though. Here’s the link to it:

  • studd

    What are the different LMI rates applicable at different LVRs? Where can I find out about this?

  • We have a page with tables that show different LMI premium rates offered by one of our lenders for both full doc as well as low doc loans. Please check it out here:

  • Teddy

    Is there any way to get a no LMI home loan at 95% LVR? I understand certain professionals can get one at 90% and others may qualify at 85% but what about 95%?

  • Hey Teddy,

    The max LVR at which you can get a no LMI home loan is 90% so if you want to avoid LMI then you can either save or maybe borrow an additional 5% deposit or go guarantor, in which case you can borrow 100% without having to pay LMI.