Canadians Reach Highest Debt Service Levels to Date

Chilliwack, BC – Alarming statistics were released stating that Canadians are paying the highest percentage of their income, towards debt. Although the headline may seem alarming our Chilliwack mortgage brokers are advising that it’s in fact not as frightening as it sounds.

Yes, Canadians will have less disposable income left to spend on life outside of servicing their debts. The difference is that a significant amount of that debt payment is going towards principal pay-down rather than interest. In the early 90’s over 95% of debt payments went towards interest, whereas now 50% of our debt payments are going towards interest – that’s a 45% decrease in the percentage of that payment going towards interest while the remaining 50% is going directly towards paying down the principal amount on said debt owed.

The percentage of our income has barely budged for servicing mortgage debt, in fact majority of the increase in debt has been obtained outside of residential mortgages.

When talking to consumers, it appears that the mortgage payment itself isn’t core of financial stress for home–owners. The culprit causing this overwhelming amount of debt really derives from car loans, credit cards and lines of credit.

We think it would be beneficial for the government to consider regulating these industries in the same way they regulate mortgage financing.

For more information check out our Facebook page for a video of our founding partner and licensed mortgage expert, Jordi Browne – as he sheds some light on the topic.

 

Elections & Changes For Canadian Home Buyers

With elections six months away, Canadian home buyers are hopeful for a solution to address the housing affordability issue and so are we. It’s undeniable that certain rule changes have made housing unaffordable for several home buyers across Canada, but these changes not only affect those trying to buy, they also affect Canadians who have been home owners for several years.

Often referred to as the “stress test”, home buyers and home owners are required to qualify for a mortgage on the greater of either: 2% above their contracted rate or the posted benchmark rate. This mortgage stress test drastically limits funds available to those trying to buy, refinance and even renew their homes. It is likely that our government will take action to hopefully make housing affordable again, we just don’t know how beneficial those changes will be to Canadians.

There are rumors of a proposed change that could cost Canadians an extra $40,000 of interest on the average $400,000 – here is our take on it.

BC Budget Speculation, Changes for Home Buyers

Chilliwack BC, The BC budget is set to be released in just a few days and as always, there are speculators weighing in on the changes we’re expected to see and where exactly we expect funds to be allocated. Housing affordability is a topical subject of course, as we’ve seen the rise and fall of transactions over the last few years and the impact these rules and regulations have had on home buyers and even home owners. These changes may consist of altering home buying programs and mortgage products, along with tax benefits for seniors, pharmacare and job training. Here is a more detailed look at those predictions:

Longer Mortgage Amortizations: Re-introducing 30-year amortizations for those who have less than a 20% down-payment.

Home Buyers Plan: Increasing the RRSP withdraw from $25,000 to $35,000 for first time home buyers without penalties with the stipulation that all moneys are repaid within 15 years.

Tax Benefits for Seniors: Increasing withdraw flexibility from RRIF’s by raising the age requirement (currently 71 years of age) as Canadians seem to be living and working longer. Consideration to increase the income threshold for GIS has also been mentioned. As it stands, qualification is limited to a max of $18,240

Pharmacare: Potentially lower the cost of prescription drugs.

Job Training: Businesses have claimed to be struggling to find the right fit along with the appropriate skill set to fill job vacancies. This shortage is apparent in the tech area and other industries that require skilled trades. Proposal to expand tax credits that allow tax payers write off a portion of the cost that comes along with training programs and further education.

For more information regarding the speculation of the BC budget: https://globalnews.ca/news/5051109/federal-budget-2019-canada-preview/

The Truth Behind Best Interest Rates

Chilliwack, BC – When it comes to getting a mortgage for a home purchase, refinancing to consolidate debt or simply renewing your mortgage, most of us are interested in securing the best interest rate. You’ll often see websites such as rate hub, offer rates that beat just about anything you’ve been quoted by your bank or mortgage broker, but did you know that 4 out of 5 people do not qualify for the rate they saw advertised? That incredibly low interest rate you saw online, will likely come with a detailed list of restrictions.

Here are a few common mortgage scenarios and the percent you can expect to add onto that “best interest rate”.

 

The above figures are estimates and subject to change without notice E&O, O.A.C.