Mortgage Intelligence

Oshawa's Mortgage News Desk!


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Downpayment Savings Strategies

Saving for a down payment requires descipline & determination, whether you’re working towards saving for a minimum downpayment like most first-time homebuyers or 20% down.

Here are a few strategies that will help you to get started with saving.

If you are at the stage of working out your downpayment strategies towards homeownership, it’s time for a meeting with the team at MiMortgage.ca. Contact us at 1 866 452-1100 or apply online now!


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What is the Qualifying Rate?

In 2010 the Department of Finance introduced the Qualifying Rate to assess borrower eligibility and ensure that potential borrowers can maintain their payments should rates begin to rise. The qualifying rate is a 5-year rate published every week by the Bank of Canada, and will be higher than your actual contract rate. The Bank of Canada surveys the six major banks’ posted 5-year fixed rates every Wednesday and uses a mode average of those rates to set the official benchmark.

As a result, your lender is required to use this rate to calculate debt service ratios when reviewing mortgage applications for all insured mortgages. Prior to October, 2016, this financial “stress test” was applicable for fixed-rate mortgages with terms of 1 to 4 years and all variable-rate mortgages. Now, it also applies to fixed-rate insured mortgages of 5 years or longer, and some conventional mortgages.

Although we can find you a much better mortgage rate – you’ll still need to show you can maintain your mortgage using the higher qualifying rate. While you must “qualify” at this higher rate, your actual payments will be based on your lower mortgage contract rate.

Our goal is to provide expert advice, education and resources that homebuyers need. It’s important that you understand the terms you agree to when making what is likely your biggest purchase decision. Want to learn more about the qualifying rate and how it applies to you? Contact the team at MiMortgage.ca now. We’re here to help you!


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Why Mortgage Before March 17?

db14142_fb_homeowners_i14759090_miIf you’re in the market for an insured mortgage, then you might want to get that mortgage before March 17.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is raising premiums for insuring mortgages on Canadian homes for the third time in three years. Canadian homebuyers are required to have mortgage insurance if they have less than a 20 per cent downpayment. The insurance provides protection for the lender in the case of a default.

How will it hit your wallet? The increase is not too significant for those making the minimum downpayment required. A homebuyer with a $250,000 mortgage and a 5 per cent downpayment will only pay about $5 per month more in insurance premiums.  We can calculate exactly how much the increase will mean to you if you get your mortgage approval on or after March 17.

The increases are actually more substantial for larger downpayments of 15 per cent or more. Those with 20 per cent or more downpayment aren’t required to have mortgage insurance, although it’s used by lenders that securitize their mortgages. As a result, any increased cost will likely be passed on to customers through higher rates.

Premiums are also increasing for “non-traditional” insured mortgages i.e. home buyers with borrowed downpayments, a type of mortgage downpayment that could grow in popularity as homebuyers strive to gain entry in the housing market.

The premium change will come into effect on March 17. Homebuyers will be able to access the current lower rates if they have bought a home and are approved before the March 17 deadline, even if they have a later closing date.

If you are looking to buy, get in touch with the team at MiMortgage.ca today!


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Surviving and Thriving: Your Mortgage Blueprint for 2017

blueprints

Image by courtesy of scvnest.com

Canadians are definitely talking about the housing market – what do the new mortgage rules mean, is this the right time to buy, have mortgage rates bottomed out, is a lender’s renewal offer the best available, and on and on! For many, it feels like some uncertain times ahead. Often it’s just a few sensible strategies that can help you survive and thrive in the current climate:

  1. Take care of your credit. It’s so important to have good credit behaviours so you always qualify for the best mortgage rate. Pay your bills on time. Don’t let your credit accounts exceed 50% of the credit available. Also don’t apply for a store card just to save on your purchase that day! Before you cancel any credit cards, speak to an expert and get advice.
  2. Let renters help pay your mortgage. A home with a rental suite can be a great option for homebuyers, especially if the area you love is pricey or you don’t want to buy a condo at a lower cost. It’s also a great option for existing homeowners looking to lower their mortgage payment.
  3. What’s the prepayment penalty? If you ever need to get out of your mortgage early, the right mortgage could save you thousands!  Not all lenders calculate penalties the same way, and the differences can be substantial. It helps to know which lenders have the most fair prepayment penalties and your mortgage broker will have that information at their fingertips.
  4. Choose low-interest debt. Whatever your need might be – paying down high-interest debt, funding education, a large purchase, investments, or renovations, your mortgage might be your most cost-effective financing option, if you have enough home equity.
  5. If you bought your first home in 2016 you may be able to take advantage of the $5,000 non-refundable Home Buyer Tax Credit amount, which provides up to $750 in federal tax relief.  Not sure if you qualify, just ask!
  6. Renovate over relocate? The right renovation might be all it takes to turn the house you’re in, into the home of your dreams. It is almost always less expensive to renovate than to relocate! We have great renovation financing options if that’s where you’re heading!
  7. Renew with your eyes open. When your lender sends out a letter suggesting you renew your mortgage at their current offer, speak to your mortgage broker, get advice.  Don’t renew with your eyes closed! This is your opportunity to negotiate the best possible deal!
  8. Speed up your mortgage pay-down. Change from monthly payments to weekly or bi-weekly payments. Or take your tax refund and put it against your mortgage principal. Your interest costs will go down with every dollar you’ve reduced on your principal.
  9. Don’t neglect your savings. In managing debt, you want to make sure you don’t need to use credit to get you through a financial emergency when your car breaks down or your washing machine quits. Make a point of setting aside a small sum every paycheque into a special emergency fund.

And lastly, it’s always a good idea to get expert mortgage advice well in advance of buying your home, and then always on an annual basis. So take the time to meet with your mortgage broker and get your blueprint for surviving and thriving in 2017.

 

 


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Is your mortgage coming up for renewal?

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Got a mortgage coming up for renewal in the next few months? There are some great options out there; and we shop around for mortgage solutions to suit your needs. Conact the team at MiMortgage.ca to have a conversation today!


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Is A Second Mortgage Right for you?

We all incurr unexpected expenses – a much needed home renovation or a roof repair that cannot be delayed. These expenses in some cases, are large amounts which most of us may not have saved up and as a result require financing. At this point it is advisable to explore all possible options available for obtaining financing – borrowing from a bank at a low interest rate, a loan from a family member or a second mortgage.

Image by courtsey of secondmortgagerates.net

Image by courtsey of secondmortgagerates.net

Sometimes obtaining financing from a bank might be challenging, due to bad credit, not having enough equity on your home or simply because it does not make sense to pay hefty penalties for breaking a mortgage prior to the renewal date.

If you do look at a second mortgage, the question you need to ask yourself is, “is a second mortgage the most suitable option for you?” It is advisable to seek advice from your mortgage broker, before you decide to proceed.

Your mortgage broker should explain the ‘pros’ and ‘cons’ of second mortgages:

  1. You will be charged a higher interest rate, as there is potentially a higher risk than a first mortgage. The interest rate will be determined based on your financial circumstances – credit score, monthly income and equity in your home.
  2. A second mortgage could be obtained through a secured line of credit.
  3. Second mortgages are usually administered through smaller lending institutions and private lenders, and will require a mortgage broker to facilitate the process.
  4. Broker fees will vary depending on your circumstances and it is advisable to find out fee you will be charged upfront.
  5. An appraisal of the property is usually required by most lenders.
  6. You willl be required to engage the services of a lawyer that will safeguard your interests.
  7. There will be penalty charges for early or late mortgage repayments. The best time for repayment avoiding penalities would be on the renewal date.

It is important to understand the process and the costs involved, in order to make an informed decision.

An informative article published by Huffington Post, gives readers insight on what potential borrowers need to know and understand about second mortgages.

If you are in need of finacing for much needed home renovations or to finance your child’s college or university education, it might be beneficial to speak to an expert at MiMortgage.ca, to find out if a second mortgage is the way forward for you? Contact us to speak to an expert now!


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Ten great reasons to use a mortgage broker

DB15036_financialconcepts_62023960For many Canadians, mortgage payments are their single biggest expense. Yet most don’t shop around and compare to ensure they are getting the best mortgage rate and terms available in their circumstances, which can cost them tens of thousands of dollars over the term of their mortgage. So don’t make that same mistake! Here are 10 reasons why you need a mortgage broker working for you:

  1. Choice.  We work with a wide range of lenders, including major banks, credit unions, and other national, regional and private lenders will instantly become accessible to you, ensuring that your specific needs are matched to the right mortgage.
  2. Great rates. Get money in your pocket by taking advantage of Mortgage Intelligence’s clout with lenders. Our stellar reputation and longstanding experience allows us to negotiate great rates and access limited time specials.
  3. A focused expert.  A mortgage is a very significant financial event. That’s why you want someone who is highly specialized in mortgages and focused solely on your needs. You will get advice that will make a significant difference in your financial life.
  4. Independence & objectivity.  We work for you, not the lender.
  5. Solutions when you need them.  We can assist with funding for bank turndowns, the self-employed, past credit problems, etc. There are mortgages for almost any situation and we know them all.
  6. Save time. Everything relating to your mortgage can be managed around your busy schedule.
  7. Service, service, service. We will be with you every step of the way, to answer all your questions, outline your best options, and efficiently guide you through the process.
  8. Ongoing support.  Our services don’t stop after the mortgage closes. We will stay in touch with you for the term of your mortgage with advice and opportunities.
  9. No cost (oac). The winning lender pays compensation for the services and solution provided, which means no fees for you in the vast majority of cases.
  10. Your satisfaction.  Our goal is to ensure that you are so completely satisfied with your mortgage experience that you will be happy to refer us to your family, friends and colleagues.

Thinking of homeownership, renewals or refinancing? It’s worth having that conversation with the team at MiMortgage.ca to find out your options.