Offset Accounts vs. Redraw Facilities: Understanding the Benefits and Limitations for Homeowners

Navigating the world of home loans can often feel like you’re trying to solve a puzzle with too many pieces. Among the various options that can enhance your mortgage efficiency and flexibility are offset accounts and redraw facilities. Both tools offer unique advantages and can be beneficial under different financial circumstances. For homeowners in Melbourne looking to optimize their home loan strategy, understanding the distinct features of each option is crucial. Consulting with a skilled mortgage broker  Melbourne can also help clarify which choice might serve your financial goals better.

What is an Offset Account?

An offset account is essentially a bank account that is linked directly to your mortgage. The balance in the offset account is used to “offset” the balance of your mortgage when interest is calculated. For example, if you owe $300,000 on your mortgage and have $50,000 in your offset account, interest is calculated on $250,000 instead of the full $300,000. This setup can significantly reduce the amount of interest you pay over the life of your loan, potentially saving you thousands of dollars and shortening your loan term.

The primary benefit of an offset account is its flexibility. You can access the funds in the account at any time, just like a regular checking account. This means you can deposit your salary directly into the offset account and withdraw money for everyday expenses, all while reducing your mortgage interest.

What is a Redraw Facility?


A redraw facility allows you to make extra payments on your mortgage that reduce the principal faster and decrease the overall interest. If you find yourself in a position where you need access to these extra funds, you can “redraw” them from the loan, subject to the terms and conditions set by the lender. This is particularly useful if you’ve managed to pay ahead on your mortgage and want the security of being able to access that money if required.

However, redraw facilities typically have more restrictions compared to offset accounts. For instance, there may be a minimum redraw amount, fees associated with redrawing funds, or a limit on how many free redraws you can make annually. These conditions can vary widely between lenders, so it’s important to understand them fully before deciding to rely on a redraw facility.

Comparing Offset Accounts and Redraw Facilities

While both options provide opportunities to save on interest and potentially pay off your mortgage sooner, they serve different needs:

  1. Accessibility: Offset accounts offer immediate access to your funds, much like a regular bank account. This makes them ideal for those who want both to save on interest and maintain liquidity. Redraw facilities, while useful, do not offer the same level of accessibility and can come with restrictions that limit how quickly you can access your funds.
  2. Ease of Use: Offset accounts are straightforward and operate just like any other bank account, making them very easy to use and understand. Redraw facilities can be more complex, often requiring you to navigate specific terms and conditions to access your money.
  3. Suitability: Offset accounts are particularly beneficial for those who maintain a high daily balance in their account, as this maximizes the interest savings. Redraw facilities are more suited to those who are focused on paying down their mortgage quickly and might not need immediate access to the extra funds.

The Role of a Mortgage Broker in Melbourne

Deciding whether an offset account or a redraw facility is best for your situation can be complicated. This is where a mortgage broker in Melbourne can be invaluable. They can provide personalized advice based on your financial situation, preferences, and future goals. A mortgage broker will help you understand the intricate details of each option and how they fit into your overall financial strategy. They can also assist in comparing different mortgage products from various lenders that offer these features, ensuring you get the best possible deal tailored to your needs.


Choosing between an offset account and a redraw facility involves weighing your need for flexibility against your financial goals and lifestyle. Both options have the potential to save you money and help you pay off your mortgage sooner but in different ways. With the expert guidance of a mortgage broker Melbourne, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your financial objectives, ultimately making your home loan work harder for you.