"Interest rates are prices, and sometimes you get what you pay for."
One of the questions that I get asked all the time, which stumps me a little bit more than you might think it should, is "what is your best mortgage rate?". Typically when people ask this question they mean what is the lowest rate that I have access to, and while it should be easy enough to answer, the truth is that this question represents a common yet fundamental misunderstanding about mortgages and interest rates.
In this blog, we are going to talk about how a client of mine was able to rearrange her finances such that she and her partner could mortgage qualify for a $400K target house in their neighborhood.
My spouse and I have been Tangerine Bank (formally ING Direct) customers since early 2001 when they first came out in Canada and often recommend one of their automatic savings tools without any hesitation as a truly great financial management tool. This is especially true now that I am a mortgage broker helping people get into homes. It helps you save your money and earn interest considerably higher than the average of the major banks.
The current law in Canada requires that any residential mortgage where the borrower has less than 20% down payment be insured against borrower default. The main insurer to the banks is CMHC (Canadian Mortgage & Housing Corporation) followed by Genworth, and Canada Guaranty. The insurance premiums are all the same among the three and depend on a few variables. In any regard, they can be a significant amount of money, in the tens of thousands of dollars added to the loan balance. The question often asked is how to avoid CMHC fees / can I avoid CMHC fees? Conversely, I hear prospective buyers say they are waiting to purchase until they have saved 20% in order to avoid CMHC fees. This article looks at the costs and benefits of CMHC ‘mortgage default insurance’ and whether or not it is a big deal.