LVR: Understanding loan to value ratios and home loans | Finder (2023)

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If you're looking for a home loan you may have come across the term LVR and wondered about its meaning. Loan to value ratio (LVR) is used to determine how much you are borrowing in relation to the value of your property. A high LVR means your deposit is small. A low LVR means you have a large deposit and are therefore borrowing less.

LVR is like the reverse of a deposit. If you have a loan to value ratio of 80% then your deposit is 20% of the property's value. And you are borrowing the remaining 80%. That's your LVR.

Understanding LVRs helps you compare home loans and find one that matches your deposit size. It can help you avoid applying for a loan that isn't suitable.

What is the Loan to Value Ratio?

The meaning of LVR, or loan to value ratio, is the value of a property minus the deposit a borrower has saved. Loan to value ratio is expressed as a percentage. If you have an LVR of 80% this means you have a 20% deposit saved and must borrow the remaining amount.

(Video) What is loan-to-value ratio?

It's a common term in the mortgage industry for determining how much someone can borrow in relation to their deposit size. Every home loan product has a maximum LVR, which indicates to a borrower how big your deposit should be in proportion to the value of the property you are buying.

Simple LVR example

  • You purchase a $700,000 property.
  • Your deposit is $140,000.
  • $140,000 is 20% of $700,000. This means you have an 80% LVR.

Maximum and maximum insured LVRs

Take a look at any home loan in Australia and you will see two loan to value ratios listed alongside details like the interest rate and comparison rate. These are maximum LVR and maximum insured LVR.

The difference comes down to lenders mortgage insurance (LMI). This is a premium lenders charge to borrowers when there are deposits below 20% of a property's value. In other words, when the LVR is higher than 80%.

LMI can cost thousands of dollars, but it does help borrowers buy properties with smaller deposits. And this is why home loans have two LVRs.

The maximum insured loan to value ratio lets borrowers know if the loan is available with a deposit below 20%. The maximum LVR refers to the deposit size you will need without paying lenders mortgage insurance.

The maximum LVR on most Australian loans is 80% or lower. But the maximum insured LVR can be 90% or 95%.

Here are two examples:

(Video) Home Loan University: Loan-to-Value Ratio (LVR) Explained | Core Unit: Home Loan Preparation

  • Home Loan A. The loan has a maximum LVR of 80% and maximum insured LVR of 80%. You need a 20% deposit to get this loan and cannot pay LMI to get it with a smaller deposit
  • Home Loan B. The loan has a maximum LVR of 80% but the maximum insured LVR is 90%. You can get this loan with a 20% deposit and avoid LMI but you can also get it with a deposit between 19 and 10% of your property's value. You just need to pay LMI as well.

How to calculate your loan to value ratio

Loan to value ratios are simple to calculate. You need two numbers: your property value and your loan amount (or deposit size).

Let's say you are buying a $600,000 property. Your deposit is $100,000, therefore your loan amount is $500,000.

Now you can determine the LVR percentage by dividing the loan amount by the property value. Here's how to calculate it:

  • 600,000 - 100,000 = 500,000
  • (500,000 ÷ 600,000) x 100 = 83.3% LVR
  • Your LVR = 83%

Here are some examples in a table, using different property values and deposit sizes.

Example LVR calculations

Property valueLoan amountDepositLVR
$500,000$400,000$100,000 (20%)80% LVR
$500,000$425,000$75,000 (15%)85% LVR
$700,000$490,000$210,000 (30%)70% LVR
$700,000$630,000$70,000 (10%)90% LVR
$900,000$810,000$90,000 (10%)90% LVR
$900,000$720,000$180,000 (20%)80% LVR
$1,000,000$950,000$50,000 (5%)95% LVR
$1,000,000$800,000$200,000 (20%)80% LVR

How refinancers can calculate their LVR

LVR matters for refinancers too but it's slightly different.

Instead of a deposit, you need to calculate your home equity. This is the value of your property minus your remaining home loan debt. Before you break out the calculator do the following:

  • Determine the current value of your property. Don't use the price you paid for the property. Instead, estimate its current market value by looking at recent sales of similar properties in your area. You can get free property valuations through various real estate sites, or pay for a professional valuation.
  • Check your remaining loan amount. Log in to your lender's online platform or app and check how much is left on your home loan.

Once you have those two numbers you can work out your equity and determine your current loan to value ratio. Here's an example:


  • Your home is worth $800,000.
  • You have $400,000 left to repay on your home loan.
  • You have $400,000 in equity

And then you can work out your LVR: (400,000 ÷ 800,000) x 100 = 50%.

With an LVR of 50%, a refinancer would likely be eligible for most home loans, given that so many home loans have a maximum LVR of 80%. Provided your income and spending proves you can continue making repayments, you should have no trouble refinancing with such a strong LVR.

A lower loan to value ratio makes it easier to get a home loan

If your LVR is 90% and you apply for a home loan with a maximum insured LVR of 80% your application will be rejected or the lender will recommend a different product. That's why it's important to understand your deposit size.

The lower your LVR, the bigger your deposit is relative to your home loan. This makes it easier to get a home loan. As mentioned above, borrowers with low deposits (that is, deposits under 20%) usually have to pay lenders mortgage insurance.

Compare low deposit home loans with LVRs above 80%

Having a lower LVR and a bigger deposit can make your home loan application easier. Lenders view borrowers with 20% deposits as lower risk prospects. If you are applying for a home loan with just a 5% deposit a lender may look more closely at your income, debts and expenses or ask you for more information to establish your financial position.

Of course, if you've calculated your costs and think you're better off buying a property sooner, it can be worth it. Once you have bought a property you can start paying it off and building equity. For some buyers, getting onto the property ladder faster is worth the extra cost.

(Video) What is Loan-to-Value Ratio or LVR?

Can I get a home loan with 95% or 100% LVR?

You can. While they aren't as common as loans with 80% to 90% maximum insured LVRs you can definitely find loans with 95% LVRs. These loans are available with just a 5% deposit, meaning you can jump into the property market with a much smaller deposit saved.

Here's an example to show just how much smaller a 5% deposit is.

Property value5% deposit20% deposit

Compare loans with 95% LVR

You can use a guarantor to get a home loan with 100% LVR

A long time ago (well, before the 2008 Global Financial Crisis), lenders were actually giving some borrowers 100% of the value of a property. Those days are over, but there is an exception for some lucky borrowers: a home loan with a guarantor.

Many lenders will lend you above 95% if your parents own a property and are willing to act as your guarantor. This means they agree to be responsible for your mortgage (or part of it) if you can't repay your loan.

It's a risky option. In the worst case scenario a borrower defaults on their loan and the parents are forced to sell their own house to cover the debt. But if everyone involved in the arrangement understands the risks and gets independent financial advice it can work out well.

Using a guarantor lets you avoid LMI too.

(Video) What is LVR? - Loan to Value Ratio Explained | Lion Property Group

The First Home Loan Deposit Scheme

First home buyers who meet certain eligibility criteria can also get a home loan with a 5% deposit using the federal government's First Home Loan Deposit Scheme.

This scheme allows eligible buyers to borrow 95% of the property's value. The main benefit is that you can avoid paying LMI because the government will act as your guarantor.


What is the LVR loan-to-value ratio? ›

LVR is the ratio of your loan amount to the value of the property you're buying, shown as a percentage. LVR is the home loan amount, divided by the bank's property valuation, multiplied by 100. An LVR over 80% is likely to result in the home buyer paying LMI and a higher interest rate on repayments.

What is LVR on a home loan? ›

What is LVR? LVR stands for loan-to-value (or sometimes loan-to-valuation) ratio. It's a percentage figure that compares how much a lender is willing to loan you against the total value of the asset you plan to buy.

What is the maximum LVR for a home loan? ›

Some lenders have a maximum LVR of 90%. This means you would need at least a 10% deposit to be eligible for a home loan. Others have a maximum LVR of 95%. That means you could secure a home loan with as little as a 5% deposit.

What does LVR mean with an example? ›

Loan to Value Ratio Calculator

Your LVR is the amount you're looking to borrow, divided by the value of the property you want to buy 2and expressed as a percentage. For instance, if you're borrowing $400,000 to buy a $500,000 property, your LVR would be 80%.

What is LVR formula? ›

Loan to Valuation Ratio (LVR) is the percentage of the total value of the property or asset that you've borrowed. To work out your LVR, take the amount you plan to borrow or your current loan amount and divide it by the price of your asset. This figure is your LVR.

What is the loan-to-value ratio for a home? ›

The loan-to-value (LTV) ratio is a measure comparing the amount of your mortgage with the appraised value of the property. The higher your down payment, the lower your LTV ratio.

What is an example of a loan to value ratio? ›

Mortgage Example of LTV

If you make a $10,000 down payment, your loan is for $80,000, which results in an LTV ratio of 80% (i.e., 80,000/100,000). If you were to increase the amount of your down payment to $15,000, your mortgage loan is now $75,000. This would make your LTV ratio 75% (i.e., 75,000/100,000).

How do I work out my loan to value? ›

It's simple to calculate your loan-to-value ratio. Divide the amount you need to borrow by the total value of the property, then multiply the result by 100 to get a percentage.

What is the best loan to value ratio? ›

What Is a Good LTV? If you're taking out a conventional loan to buy a home, an LTV ratio of 80% or less is ideal. Conventional mortgages with LTV ratios greater than 80% typically require PMI, which can add tens of thousands of dollars to your payments over the life of a mortgage loan.

How much house can I afford if I make $36,000 a year? ›

For example, if you make $3,000 a month ($36,000 a year), you can afford a mortgage with a monthly payment no higher than $1,080 ($3,000 x 0.36). Your total household expense should not exceed $1,290 a month ($3,000 x 0.43). How much house can I afford with an FHA loan?

What is a bad LVR? ›

A high LVR means a high risk for the lender. The LVRs above 80% is considered high risk, and for high-risk LVR you are required to pay lenders mortgage insurance (LMI). LMI protects the lender in case of default on home loan payments and minimizes lender's risk.

What is required for loan limits above an 80% loan-to-value ratio? ›

This term is often used when describing the requirements for a certain type of mortgage program or product. For example, FHA loans have a maximum LTV ratio of 96.5%. Conventional (non-FHA) mortgages with an LTV above 80% typically require private mortgage insurance, or PMI, an added cost for the borrower.

How do I find out how much equity I have in my house? ›

You can figure out how much equity you have in your home by subtracting the amount you owe on all loans secured by your house from its appraised value. This includes your primary mortgage as well as any home equity loans or unpaid balances on home equity lines of credit.

What are the risks of high LVR? ›

A higher LVR means higher risk for the lender. To bring this risk down, the borrower has to purchase lenders mortgage insurance (LMI). You may have to pay LMI even if you refinance at a later date with an LVR above 80%. Conversely, a low LVR signals less risk to the lender and increases your borrowing power.

What is standard LVR? ›

Standard LVR is the LVR applicable to equities when an investor holds 2-4 securities in their portfolio. For a list of Approved Securities click here.

What does 85% LVR mean? ›

An 85% loan to value ratio (LVR) is where a borrower only requires a 15% deposit and borrows 85% of the value of a property. The table below displays variable home loans from our Online Partners that accept an LVR of 85%.

What does LVR 70% mean? ›

The maximum LVR for the primary loan is 80% and 70% against the guarantor's security. These LVR restrictions not only help to ensure we are lending responsibly but it also means there is no need to pay lender's mortgage insurance. An LVR under 80% generally attracts better interest rates.

What is considered high LVR? ›

The current policy classifies investor loans as high-LVR if they are more than 60% of the property's value, and restricts high-LVR lending to no more than 5% of a bank's total new investor lending.

What is a bad loan-to-value ratio? ›

This means that the risk of the lender is low. Conversely, anything above 80% is considered a bad loan to value ratio as it is riskier for the lender.

What does 80% loan-to-value ratio mean? ›

The loan-to-value ratio is the amount of the mortgage compared with the value of the property. It is expressed as a percentage. If you get an $80,000 mortgage to buy a $100,000 home, then the loan-to-value is 80%, because you got a loan for 80% of the home's value.

What is the maximum loan-to-value ratio that a lender will accept? ›

A higher LTV ratio means higher risk for the lender, and may keep you from getting a loan. The highest LTV most lenders will accept is 95% with very good credit.

What is the math formula for loan-to-value ratio? ›

The formula used to calculate LTV is the mortgage amount divided by the appraised property value: loan amount/property value = LTV ratio.

How important is loan-to-value ratio? ›

LTV is important because it determines how much your mortgage will cost you. The LTV and equity are the main drivers for price, so as your equity increases, you begin to qualify for better deals. The lower the LTV, the lower mortgage rates are. Lenders take this into account when offering a mortgage deal.

What is the lowest LTV mortgage available? ›

A 50% LTV mortgage is at the low end of the typical range – usually, lenders offer LTVs between 50% and 95%. With a 50% LTV, lenders are taking on less of a risk, so you'll have a wide range of competitive options to choose from, with better deals and a lower total cost than you would with higher LTVs.

How can I improve my loan-to-value ratio? ›

You can do this by: Saving more towards your deposit. Pushing for a lower price on a new home than the seller is asking. Adding value to your current home by making home improvements.

What is 90% loan-to-value loans? ›

What does LTV mean? Your “loan to value ratio” (LTV) compares the size of your mortgage loan to the value of the home. For example: If your home is worth $200,000, and you have a mortgage for $180,000, your LTV ratio is 90% — because the loan makes up 90% of the total price.

How to calculate 80% loan-to-value? ›

Example - Calculate 80% LTV

Let's say that you want to buy a house for $300,000. You've saved up $60,000 for a down payment and will need a mortgage for the remaining $240,000. To calculate the LTV ratio, divide the loan amount by the value of the property: LTV ratio = $240,000 / $300,000 = 0.80.

What happens if your house is worth more than your mortgage? ›

If you owe $150,000 on your mortgage loan and your home is worth $200,000, you have $50,000 of equity in your home. Your equity can increase in two ways. As you pay down your mortgage, the amount of equity in your home will rise. Your equity will also increase if the value of your home jumps.

Which loan has the highest loan-to-value? ›

What Is the Maximum LTV Ratio Lenders Allow?
LTV Ratio Limits by Loan Type
Loan TypeLoan PurposeMaximum LTV Ratio
Cash-out refinance80%
FHAPurchase96.50% or 97%
Rate-and-term refinance97.75%
11 more rows
Oct 23, 2022

How much house can I afford if I make $100000 a year? ›

A 100K salary means you can afford a $350,000 to $500,000 house, assuming you stick with the 28% rule that most experts recommend.

How much do you have to make a year to afford a $400 000 house in California? ›

The annual salary needed to afford a $400,000 home is about $165,000. Over the past two years, home prices have skyrocketed amid the combined impacts of a global pandemic and housing inventory shortages. Between 2020 and 2022, home prices soared 30%, according to Freddie Mac.

How much do I have to make a year to afford a $400000 house? ›

Assuming a 30-year fixed conventional mortgage and a 20 percent down payment of $80,000, with a high 6.88 percent interest rate, borrowers must earn a minimum of $105,864 each year to afford a home priced at $400,000.

Will interest rates go down in 2023? ›

“[W]ith the rate of inflation decelerating rates should gently decline over the course of 2023.” Fannie Mae. 30-year fixed rate mortgage will average 6.4% for Q2 2023, according to the May Housing Forecast.

What is considered high in loan to deposit ratio? ›

Typically, the ideal loan-to-deposit ratio is 80% to 90%. A loan-to-deposit ratio of 100% means a bank loaned one dollar to customers for every dollar received in deposits it received. It also means a bank will not have significant reserves available for expected or unexpected contingencies.

What does 75% LVR mean? ›

Loan to Value Ratio, or more commonly known as LVR, signifies what portion of the total value of a property a person is borrowing. For example, if you are buying a property worth $200,000 and have a $50,000 deposit, then your LVR is 75% because you are borrowing 75% of the value of the property.

What loan-to-value ratio should not be exceeded? ›

When buying a home, an LTV of 80% or under is generally considered good—that's the level you can't exceed if you want to avoid paying for mortgage insurance. In order to achieve an 80% LTV, borrowers need to make a down payment of at least 20%, plus closing costs.

What does loan to value 90% of 200000 mean? ›

Loan-to-value ratios are easy to calculate. Just divide the loan amount by the current appraised value of the property. For example, if a lender gives you a $180,000 loan on a home that's appraised at $200,000, you'll divide $180,000 over $200,000 and get an LTV of 90%.

What is 60% maximum loan to value LTV? ›

A 60% loan to value (LTV) mortgage is available when you have a deposit of at least 40% of the value of the property you're buying or remortgaging. This means you'll be borrowing the remaining 60% of the property value from the lender. LTV shows how big your deposit is relative to the value of the property.

How can I get equity out of my house without refinancing? ›

Sale-Leaseback Agreement. One of the best ways to get equity out of your home without refinancing is through what is known as a sale-leaseback agreement. In a sale-leaseback transaction, homeowners sell their home to another party in exchange for 100% of the equity they have accrued.

Is it a good idea to take equity out of your house? ›

Taking out a home equity loan can help you fund life expenses such as home renovations, higher education costs or unexpected emergencies. Home equity loans tend to have lower interest rates than other types of debt, which is a significant benefit in today's rising interest rate environment.

What percentage of equity can you borrow? ›

How much can you borrow with a home equity loan? A home equity loan generally allows you to borrow around 80% to 85% of your home's value, minus what you owe on your mortgage. Some lenders allow you to borrow significantly more — even as much as 100% in some instances.

What is considered a high risk borrower? ›

Lenders label a loan applicant as a high-risk borrower when the applicant's low credit score and/or poor credit history means he or she has a high possibility of defaulting. To a lender, a high-risk borrower likely has few, if any, other options for a loan.

Is a high loan to value ratio bad? ›

Key points. Loan-to-value ratio compares the amount of a loan with the value of the asset being used to secure it. Lenders prefer a low LTV ratio, since it represents less risk. They see a high LTV ratio as riskier.

What can having a high loan to value ratio cause? ›

Lenders use it to gauge a loan's potential risk: In general, the higher the LTV ratio, the more likely it is the lender might lose money if you default on the loan, and the more likely a lender may have to foreclose on your home.

What is the loan to value ratio for a house? ›

The loan-to-value (LTV) ratio is a measure comparing the amount of your mortgage with the appraised value of the property. The higher your down payment, the lower your LTV ratio. Mortgage lenders may use the LTV in deciding whether to lend to you and to determine if they will require private mortgage insurance.

Can I borrow more than 80 percent? ›

Most lenders want an LVR of 80% or less for a home loan. If your LVR is above 80%, lenders will consider it high-risk and you'll typically need to pay Lenders Mortgage Insurance. However, we know lenders that offer no-LMI home loans.

What is 90% LVR? ›

A 90% loan to value ratio (LVR) is where a borrower only requires a 10% deposit and borrows 90% of the value of a property.

What is the best loan-to-value ratio? ›

As a general rule of thumb, your ideal loan-to-value ratio should be somewhere under 80%. Anything above 80% is considered a high LTV. There are plenty of mortgages available for people with LTVs at 80%, 90%, or even 95%, but you'll be paying much more on interest.

Is 40% a good loan-to-value ratio? ›

What Is A Good LTV Ratio For A Mortgage? Generally, a good LTV to aim for is around 80% or lower. Managing to maintain these numbers can not only help improve the odds that you'll be extended a preferred loan option that comes with better rates attached.

What happens if a loan has a loan-to-value ratio that is higher than 80%? ›

If the LTV ratio is higher than 80%, a borrower may be required to purchase private mortgage insurance (PMI). This can add anywhere from 0.5% to 1% to the total amount of the loan on an annual basis.

What is too high for loan-to-value ratio? ›

A “high-LTV” loan means you're making a lower down payment. It also means you're borrowing more money, so your mortgage payment will be higher and you'll need to prove you have enough income to qualify for the loan.

Is 55% a good LTV? ›

A 55% LTV mortgage is at the low end of the typical range – usually, lenders offer LTVs between 50% and 95%. With a 55% LTV, lenders are taking on less of a risk, so you'll have a wide range of competitive options to choose from, with better deals and a lower total cost than you would with higher LTVs.

What is the lowest loan-to-value mortgage? ›

What LTV ratios are available? The lowest LTV mortgages available come with a ratio of 60%, going right up to 100% for the highest. Below 80% is considered 'low', with 85-90% and upwards considered 'high'. Low LTV mortgages come with low interest rates but high deposits, and vice versa for loans with high ratios.

What are the new LVR rules? ›

Restrictions on high-LVR residential mortgage lending set a 'speed limit' on how much new low-deposit lending banks can do. We are proposing to ease LVR restrictions with effect from 1 June 2023, from: 10% limit for loans with LVR above 80% for owner occupiers, and. 5% limit for loans with LVR above 60% for investors.


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