* Tax information consists of general comments only, for full details see the applicable legislation or review with your advisor.
Can we make changes to the mortgage application, such as length of term, repayment frequency, etc., once the application has been submitted?
Yes. Your ideal mortgage formula has probably already been created, but if you want to consider a change let's review the possible benefits and implications.
What is an IAD or Interest Adjustment Date?
If your transaction is due to close in the middle of the month, but your regular mortgage payments are set for the start of the month, your first mortgage payment could be delayed for several weeks. To cover this, a date is set as the IAD and an amount is collected on closing to cover this Interest Adjustment Date period.
Is GST paid on a resale home?
There is no GST unless the house has been renovated substantially, and then the tax is applied as if it were a new house.*
How much of a downpayment will I need?
The downpayment usually represents between 5-20% of the property's total price.
What is the difference between High Ratio Mortgage Insurance and Mortgage Life Insurance? High Ratio Mortgage Insurance protects the lender against payment default by the home buyer. It is required by most lenders if the home buyer has less than 20% downpayment. An insurance premium will apply. Mortgage Life Insurance protects your dependents and loved ones in the event of your death.
When the mortgage lender pays the Property Taxes, how are payments calculated? The estimated amount of your Property Taxes can be added to the mortgage payment and paid on your behalf at the appropriate times. Depending on the balance in your tax account, it may be necessary to increase or decrease the monthly payments to reflect the timing of Property Tax payments.*
I am looking at buying a new construction home. What type of products do you offer?
Various Mortgage products may be available with rate caps from 4 months up to 12 months.
What is a rate cap?
A rate cap locks in the maximum interest rate a client will receive for their mortgage. The rate cap is based on the rates at time of application for the selected product, less any discretionary pricing if given.
How can I stay in my current house while I am building my new one?
Some self-build/progress mortgages can fund construction of your new home while you remain in your current house. This will have to be approved by the lender. This approach, if approved by the lender, can be a more economical strategy of structuring your finances rather than selling your current home and moving to rental accommodations. Provided you qualify, the lender will require confirmation of the sale of your current home (a written unconditional sale agreement) upon reaching a predetermined point of completion of the new home.
For peace of mind and in order to ensure you have more cash to work with, many applicants opt to sell prior to starting construction on the new home and reside in short-term rental accommodations or with other family members.
Can the interest rate cap be extended?
No, the rate cap is set for the period chosen. If the rate cap expires, current rates will take effect.
If my progress draw mortgage has been approved as an insured mortgage, but I can now afford an uninsured (conventional) mortgage, what happens to the insurance premium?
As the mortgage was approved as an insured mortgage you will still have to pay the original mortgage premium to the insurer, as this is part of the original terms and conditions of the mortgage, regardless of whether this mortgage is cancelled or amended to conventional.
Is the land draw deducted from the 1st draw?
Yes, when a land draw is approved on a conventional mortgage the 1st draw is split in to two portions (remember lands draws can be approved on conventional mortgages only).
Can I have a land draw if I already own the land?
Land draws are subject to approval for conventional mortgages when the land is being purchased, has been purchased and is free and clear, or if there is an outstanding loan secured by the land.
If property is 95-99% complete, will the lender treat as 100% complete? What is the minimum percentage lenders will fund final advance on? Lenders will only fund if the house is 100% complete (less 3% allowance for seasonal holdbacks). This means that the house can be complete to 97% and the only thing that is not complete is something like siding or pouring the driveway. If this is the case, the lender will only fund 97% to the solicitor holding back the 3% until a final inspection advises the house is 100% complete.
After the first draw can I change the terms and conditions of the mortgage?
There are times when you can change your final mortgage terms after the first draw. You usually do not sign the final mortgage documents until the house is complete and therefore can make changes until that time.
Can I port my existing mortgage to a New Construction Mortgage to eliminate or reduce prepayment charges? For completion mortgages you must return to your existing lender with a new mortgage to maintain the portability features. The new mortgage must fully fund within 90 days of the old mortgage being paid out. Please note that conditions vary by lender, other qualifications may apply.
For progress draw mortgages, you have up to 90 days in order to maintain portability features. The first advance of the progress draw must be within 90 days, and the final advance of the completion mortgage must be within 12 months. The prepayment charge is paid upfront, and then refunded once the final completion mortgage is advanced.
How long do I have to build?
Generally, there is no set amount of time imposed. However, keep in mind that funds will not be advanced if there is no progress in construction. Keeping to the construction timeline is far more economical to your bottom line.
On a self-build mortgage do I pay interest on the whole amount I want to borrow or just what I have borrowed so far?
You only pay interest on the amount you have actually borrowed. As your project progresses and you borrow more, your monthly interest payments will increase.
How does the Construction Lien Act affect my construction project and how is it handled during construction?
Any person or company that supplies your project with materials or labour has the right to place a lien against the title of your home as a method of recovery in the event of non-payment. The Construction Lien Act requires that an amount be held in trust from which a lien may be paid. The lender will instruct the solicitor to hold back an amount (usually 10% of each draw payment) until 45 days after substantial completion of the home. You should consult with your lawyer regarding the impact of the Construction Lien Act on your project.
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To help you better understand the process of buying a home, we've put together a list of common terms
General Mortgage Terms
This type of mortgage must usually remain unchanged for whatever term you agree to. Prepayment costs will apply if you payout, renegotiate, or refinance before the end of term.
This is a mortgage which offers the same security as a closed mortgage, but which can be converted to a longer, closed mortgage at any time without prepayment costs. Typically associated with fixed rate mortgages.
The mortgage you obtain when you have less than 20% of the total purchase price to put down as your downpayment. This type of mortgage must be insured (through sources such as CMHC or Genworth Financial Canada).
This type of mortgage may be repaid, in part or in full, at any time during the term without any prepayment costs.
FIXED RATE MORTGAGE
An interest rate that does not change during the entire mortgage term.
VARIABLE RATE MORTGAGE
An interest rate that will fluctuate in accordance with the prevailing market prime rate during the mortgage term.
The percentage interest that you pay on top of the loan principal. For example, you may take out a mortgage of $100,000 at a rate of 12%. Your monthly payments will consist of a portion of the original $100,000, plus 12% interest.
The process of determining the lending value of a property. There is usually a fee to have an appraisal done.
The amount of interest due between the date your mortgage starts and the date the first mortgage payment is calculated from. Sometimes there is a gap between the closing date of your home purchase and the first payment date of your mortgage. Let's say that the closing date on your new house is August 10th - but your mortgage payments are on the 15th of each month (so your first payment is calculated from August 15th and paid on September 15th). That leaves five days (August 10th to 14th) that aren't accounted for in your first mortgage payment. You have to make an extra payment to make up for these five days; the payment is generally due on your closing date. You can avoid all this by arranging to make your first mortgage payment exactly one payment period (e.g., one month) after your closing date.
LAND TRANSFER TAX
A tax that is levied (in some provinces) on any property that changes hands.
LEGAL FEES AND DISBURSEMENTS
Some of the legal costs associated with the sale or purchase of a property. It's in your best interest to engage the services of a real estate lawyer (or a notary in Quebec).
PREPAID PROPERTY TAX AND UTILITY ADJUSTMENTS
The amount you will owe if the person selling you the home has prepaid any property taxes or utility bills. The amount to reimburse them will be calculated based on the closing date.
A legal description of your property and its location and dimensions. An up-to-date survey is usually required by your mortgage lender. If not available from the vendor, your lawyer can obtain the property survey for a fee.
Taxes applied to the purchase cost of a property. Some properties are sales tax exempt (GST and/or PST), and some are not. For instance, residential resale properties are usually GST exempt, while new properties require GST. Always ask before signing an offer.
The number of years that you take to fully pay off your mortgage (not the same as your mortgage term). Amortization periods are often 15, 20, or 25 years long.
ASSUMING A MORTGAGE
Taking over the obligations of the previous owner's (or builder's) mortgage when you buy a property.
BUY DOWN RATE
The portion of the interest rate on a buyer's mortgage that you assume when they buy your home. If you're selling your home and the prospective buyer doesn't like the interest rate on their mortgage, you can offer to add a certain percentage of it onto your existing mortgage. You can add a maximum of 3%.
CANADA MORTGAGE AND HOUSING CORPORATION (CMHC)
A Crown corporation that administers the National Housing Act for the federal government and encourages the improvement of housing and living conditions for all Canadians. One potential source of mortgage insurance for high-ratio mortgages.
Costs that are in addition to the purchase price of a property and which are payable on the closing date. Examples include legal fees, land transfer taxes, and disbursements.
The date on which the sale of a property becomes final and the buyer takes possession of the property.
The money that you pay up front for a house. Downpayments typically range from 5%-20% of the total value of the home.
GENWORTH FINANCIAL CANADA
A private mortgage insurance company. One potential source of mortgage insurance for high-ratio mortgages.
Insurance to cover both your home and its contents (also referred to as property insurance). This is different from mortgage life insurance, which pays the outstanding balance of your mortgage in full if you die.
The process of having a qualified home inspector identify potential repairs to the property you are interested in and their estimated cost.
LUMP SUM PAYMENT
An extra payment that you make to reduce the amount of your mortgage principal.
A loan that you take out in order to buy property. The collateral is the property itself.
MORTGAGE LIFE INSURANCE
This form of insurance pays the outstanding balance of your mortgage in full if you die. This is different from home or property insurance, which insures your home and its contents.
MULTIPLE LISTING SERVICE (MLS)
A computerized listing of the properties available in your area, including information and sometimes pictures of each property.
PRE-APPROVED MORTGAGE CERTIFICATE
A written agreement that you will get a mortgage for a set amount of money at a set interest rate. Getting a pre-approved mortgage allows you to shop for a home without worrying how you'll pay for it.
OFFER TO PURCHASE
A legally binding agreement between you and the person who owns the house you want to buy. It includes the price you are offering, what you expect to be included with the house, and the financial conditions of sale (your financing arrangements, the closing date, etc.).
Transferring an existing mortgage from one home to a new home when you move. This is known as a "portable" mortgage.
Repaying part of your mortgage ahead of schedule. Depending on your mortgage agreement, there may be a prepayment cost for pre-paying.
The process of paying out the existing mortgage for purposes of establishing a new mortgage on the same property under new terms and conditions. This is usually done when a client requires additional funds. The client may be subject to a pre-payment cost.
Once the original term of your mortgage expires, you have the option of renewing it with the original lender or paying off all of the balance outstanding.
The length of time during which you pay a specific rate on the mortgage loan (i.e., the number of years in your mortgage contract). This is different than the amortization period. A mortgage is usually amortized over 20-25 years, with a shorter term (typically 6 months to 5 years). After the term expires, the interest rate is usually renegotiated with the lender (your bank, for example).