How Interest Rates Affect Your Costs

It's not rocket-science. The more you have to pay in interest, the more your mortgage will cost you over it's life. But most people don't realize just how much difference even a small difference in interest rate can make, particularly if you've amortized your mortgage for 20 years or more. Let's look at the interest you'll pay on a $200,000 mortgage amortized for 20, 25, 30 and 40 years, at a … [Read more...]

Canada Mortgage Rules Change

Buying a first home or taking out a loan against an existing residence will be more difficult for Canadians under new rules announced Thursday, but Finance Minister Jim Flaherty says it's for their own good. For the fourth time in as many years, the finance minister moved to tighten the mortgage and lending landscape — changes that mean up to five per cent of Canadians who might be considering … [Read more...]

When buying a home, 5% down payment is barely enough

How much skin should you have in the game if you want to buy a home? Is 5% enough? That's what the government says, although there is plenty of discussion about getting consumers to plunk down more before they are eligible to buy a house with a loan backed ultimately by the Canadian taxpayer. At that rate, with $35,000 you have enough cash to buy an average place in Vancouver's pricey but slowing … [Read more...]

Fixed vs. Variable Mortgages

Are you a fixed or a variable person? If you’re a homeowner, it’s probably a question you’ve asked yourself once or twice. Buying a home can be a terrifying proposition, but landing yourself that perfect “dream house” does not mean that the difficult decisions are at an end. Every time you negotiate (or re-negotiate) your mortgage, the question (re-)rears its ugly head: Should you choose a fixed … [Read more...]

New Proposed Legislation for Mortgage Brokers

Mortgage brokers would have to provide their clients with more information, including commissions from lenders, under proposed provincial legislation. On Monday, Service Nova Scotia Minister John MacDonell tabled the Mortgage Regulation Act at Province House. The proposed act updates a 1966 law governing mortgage brokers and lenders. The last significant change it had was in 1999, the province … [Read more...]

How much house can you afford?

Along with the excitement of buying a home comes many challenges and questions. It's a complicated process and you'll need to ask yourself if home ownership is right for you, if you are financially ready for it and how much house you can afford. Many first-time buyers want their dream home right away. A white picket fence, trees shading a huge yard, several thousand square feet of living space … [Read more...]