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What is your Best Rate?
Recently I had some good friends of mine ask what the going interest rates are and more importantly what is the best rate could I get them. Obviously not an uncommon question in my line of work but this is no longer a quick and easy question. Last year if I wanted to be a little cheeky (depending on who was asking) Id respond with a question of my own, like whats your credit score? 9 times out of 10 there would be an awkward pause and blank stare followed by a does it matter? Yes, yes it does. Once we got through that portion of the conversation Id then begin talking about the rates. But that was 2016, and now that it is 2017 the rate game has become a little like the did you see what Trump just tweeted conversation that is making people yearn for the days of old. Last October Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced significant changes* to our industry which included new securitization rules and qualification requirements. These changes forced lenders to adjust their pricing models to account for the increased costs of doing business and those costs have been handed down to you the borrower. Prior to that announcement I had a nice simple rate sheet that told me what every lender was offering. Now my rate sheet could easily be 5 pages long and it would still be incomplete. Credit scores were once the driving factor in your interest rate, now Mortgage Brokers should be asking you a laundry list of questions to determine what mortgage is best suited for you long before they tell you the best rates. Here are some questions you need to be prepared to answer before you can start asking about the interest rate. Is this a purchase or refinance? What is the loan to value percentage? What term and amortization would you like? What type of property are you wanting to mortgage? Can you prove your income? Can you stomach the idea of a very large penalty if you need to break the term? These are just a few of the questions your Mortgage Broker needs to ask when you to properly evaluate what the best rate for you is. Do you want to know where you fit into the new world of mortgage rates? Please give me a call or send me an email and I would be happy to help. *Industry Changes: Department of Finance and Article from the Globe and Mail Mortgage Tip: Do you know what is on your credit report? Check your report for free.
A good credit report and credit score are important factors in determining whether or not you will be approved for a mortgage. Here are some simple steps you can take to maintain a good credit history, and improve your chances of being approved.
What is a Credit Score Your credit score is a number that illustrates your financial health at a specific point in time. It also serves as an indicator of your financial past, and how consistently you pay off your bills and debts. This is one of the factors mortgage professionals consider in qualifying you for a mortgage. How to Check Your Credit Score To find out your credit score, contact Canadas two credit-reporting agencies: Equifax Canada at www.equifax.ca and TransUnion Canada at www.transunion.ca. For a fee, these agencies will provide you with an online copy of your credit score as well as a credit report a detailed summary of your credit history, employment history and personal financial information on file. You can also obtain a free copy of your credit report by mail. If you find any errors in your report, notify the credit-reporting agency and the organization responsible for the inaccuracy immediately. If You Do Not Have a Credit Score Its important to begin building a credit history as early as possible. You can begin to build one by applying for and responsibly using a credit card. Your financial institution or mortgage professional can help. How to Improve Your Credit Score Demonstrating your ability to manage credit is key to maintaining a good credit score. There are a number of things you can do to improve your credit score. These include: Always pay your bills in full and on time. If you cannot pay the full amount, try to pay at least the required minimum shown on your monthly statement. Pay off your debts (such as loans, credit cards, lines of credit, etc.) as quickly as possible. Never go over the limit on your credit cards, and try to keep your balances well below the limits. Reduce the number of credit card or loan applications you make. Once your credit score has improved, work with your mortgage professional to obtain a mortgage that works for you. Find Out More To find out more about credit scores and reports, visit the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada website and download or request a free copy of their guide, Understanding Your Credit Report and Credit Score. This guide provides practical, straightforward information on how to obtain and understand your credit report and score, as well as how to build and maintain a good credit history.
CMHC’s 2017 Mortgage Consumer Survey
In March 2017, CMHC completed an online survey of 3,002 recent mortgage consumers, all prime household decision-makers who had undertaken a mortgage transaction in the past 12 months. Sixty-five percent had undergone a mortgage renewal, 15% had refinanced their mortgage, and 20% had purchased a home with mortgage financing (11% First-Time Buyers and 9% Repeat Buyers). CMHC has conducted this survey since 1999. It is the largest and most comprehensive survey of its kind in Canada. The Home Buying Process Sixty-four percent of First-Time Buyers indicated they were renting before purchasing, and 34% lived with family. Wanting to buy their first home (37%) and feeling financially ready (31%) were the most important reasons First-Time Buyers gave for purchasing a home in the past year. Low interest rates was the most important reason noted by Repeat Buyers at 33%. Fifty-three percent of buyers were aware of the latest mortgage qualification changes, and 19% noted that it impacted their purchase decision. For example, 11% of buyers said they increased their down payment, 6% purchased a smaller home, 5% purchased in a dfferent location, and 3% delayed their purchase. Buyers interact with a wide variety of people, and are most likely to consult a real estate agent (72%), or look to a family member or mortgage lender for advice (both at 57%). Forty-one percent reported interacting with a mortgage broker. Of all interactions, real estate agents were noted as most valuable. Seventy-one percent of First-Time Buyers accessed savings for their down payment, while 18% received a gift from a family member. Click here to read more....