Top Calgary Mortgage Broker

Completed 2% of all FTHBI mortgages in YYC

Are you looking for a Mortgage Broker who specializes in the FTHBI in Calgary? That would be us!

We have completed 6 of these deals in 2019. There was as total of 260. So that puts us at completing 2.5% of the entire Calgary market for this program. Interesting!

Obviously, we love this program for these 2 reasons:

  1. You save between $100 and $200 per month on the mortgage payments. For sure. From Day 1.
    1. The point of the program is to lower your mortgage payments. When the government puts 5% down for you, it lowers the total balance outstanding and this lowers the payments.
  2. You save about $4000 in the CMHC fees.
    1. You put down 5%, and the government matches 5% on existing homes. That means your CMHC fee is based on 10% down and not 5% down, and you save that from Day 1 as well.

The down side

The down side is this is registered as an interest free loan from the government. You still pay them back 5% of the sale price when you sell. That is 5% of whatever the sale price is so it could be more or less, but it is still 5%.

“The down side is not a big deal!

Guaranteed lower mortgage payments and lower CMHC fee! This is a win!”

Mortgage Mark Herman, Top Calgary Mortgage Broker near me.

FREE RESEARCH Data on the First Time Home Buyer Incentive from Mortgage Mark Herman.

  • Call us for all the data you need on this program.
  • We have it all and can explain it to you -it is a long, boring read.

Here is the link to the full article, pasted below https://www.canadianmortgagetrends.com/2020/02/cmhcs-first-time-home-buyer-incentive-off-slow-start/

Four months after its official launh, CMHC’s First-Time Home Buyer Incentive had funded just 4% of its three-year goal, according to new data provided by the agency.

From the time the down payment assistance program launched on Sept. 2 to Dec. 9, CMHC received just 3,252 applications from across Canada, 2,730 of which were approved. That translated into total funding of $51.3 millionwell off pace of the agency’s three-year target of $1.25 billion.

Under the program, the government will provide first-time buyers with an interest-free down payment loan of up to 5% for resale purchases, and 10% if the property is a new build. The CMHC then participates in any rise or fall in value of the home, and the loan must be repaid either when the house is sold or within 25 years.

Interest in the program was highest in Quebec, where 1,300 applications were received. Comparatively, just 436 Ontarians applied, according to statistics that were tabled in Parliament last week.

Here’s a look at the breakdown of applications from some of the major housing markets across Canada:

  • Greater Toronto Area: 148
  • Vancouver: 45
  • Edmonton: 447
  • Calgary: 260
  • Winnipeg: 144
  • Montreal 654
  • Halifax: 64
  • New Brunswick: 60
  • PEI: 12

CMHC head Evan Siddall defended the results via Twitter on Friday:

“In addition to CMHC’s challenges in estimating demand for the FTHBI, uneven lender support is a complicating factor,” he tweeted on Friday. “It may also be evidence that there is less unsatisfied FTHBI demand due to the stress test than people claim. People can always buy less expensive homes.

Why is the FTHBI Unpopular?

Since the initiative was first announced in the Liberals’ spring budget, many in the industry have criticized it for being overly complicated and promising negligible benefits.

One of the biggest restrictions of the program is that it’s currently limited to purchases of up to $565,000. In markets like Toronto and Vancouver, buyers can be hard-pressed to find available properties under that threshold. According to recent data from the Toronto Real Estate Board, the average sale price in December was $837,788.

Many buyers have also expressed unease at the thought of giving up equity in their home, particularly with prices rising rapidly in many markets across the country.

While Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised tweaks to the FTHBI during last year’s federal election, no additional updates have since been provided. The proposed changes would increase the maximum purchase price eligible under the program to $789,000 for buyers in Toronto, Vancouver and Victoria.

It remains to be seen whether the FTHBI’s slow start is a harbinger of future demand over the coming years, or whether first-time buyers will grow more receptive to sharing a chunk of their home equity with the government.

Why CoronaVirus = Lower Mortgage Rates

This link does a great job explaining why rates are coming down right now for mortgages.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/coronavirus-mortgage-rates-canada-1.5443071

Summary:

  • Events that could cause a stock market crash tend to also cause a “flee to safety” and the 5-year Canadian Mortgage Bond is that safety net.
  • When investors buy these bonds the demand goes up so the bonds pay less as everyone wants them.
  • The lower cost of the bond means a lower interest rate on your mortgage

This should be a short term blip, so if you are buying a home take advantage of it quickly

Mark Herman, top Calgary mortgage broker

UPDATE: NHBI Canada

Here is an UPDATE to the Canadian New First Time Home Buyer Incentive Program

A Calgary lawyer recently had an opportunity to review the program and attend a basic seminar. He said he would not recommend the “down payment equity share” program to a first time home buyer for the following reasons – BUT here are our replies  … and the Program DOES make sense to do.

NEGATIVE POINTS and the reasons FOR the program are below:

  1. It will take much longer to be approved for this program than for a normal mortgage loan and sellers may not accommodate the longer condition time.
  • We normally pre-approve buyers with these files and this program in advance so there is no extra time needed at the lenders for conditions.
  • The math for this program is complicated and buyers that use this program need to be pre-approved as they need the mortgage to match the affordability guidelines and to shop in the right price range.
  • The extra time is at closing when 2 sets of documents are needed by the lawyer. As long as this is known in advance, the closing date can be long enough to allow for the extra paperwork to be requested and completed.

 

  1. Higher legal and appraisal costs will result as two separate mortgages have to be prepared and registered (one for the lender and one for the equity share) and an extra appraisal will have to be obtained and paid for by the owner if paying out the incentive mortgage prior to the ultimate sale of the property.
  • A 1st and 2nd mortgages go on title at the same time as closing.
  • Appraisal on purchase is not involved as it has to be a CMHC approved mortgage (CMHC is responsible for the appraisal in this case) and the program is based on the purchase price.
  • If the owner wants to pay it off / back sooner, then an appraisal is needed at buyer cost ~$350.
  • This would happen if the owner wanted to do extensive renovations to the home.
  • An appraisal should not be needed on a bonafide sale, to a 3rd party, via a realtor, and when listed on MLS.
  • An appraisal MAY be needed – as the owners cost – if the sale if it is a “private sale” and/ or believed to be below market value.
  • (This is to stop the owner from selling the home to a family member for $1.00 and then attempt to repay the loan with $0.05.)
  • The buyer has already saved many times the extra costs, savings are about $100 – $150/ month, from day 1. Paying-out at 10, 15, 20 years later … they have already saved $100 x 12 x 10 years = $12,000, in the bank, already.

 

  1. A disincentive to improve/renovate the property will exist as any appreciated value is shared with the government notwithstanding that they don’t contribute to the renovation costs.
  • True.
  • Upon repayment, improvements will be included when determining the market value, therefore the Homebuyer will have to consider the cost and benefit of the planned renovations, and decide whether to repay the Incentive prior to making any home improvements.
  • IMPORTANT: It may be beneficial to the Homebuyer to repay the Incentive prior to conducting any major renovations to the home.

 

  1. A potential trap is being created for non-permanent residents who are legally authorized to work in Canada who can qualify to buy under this program but will have extreme difficulty in selling when their work permit expires as they will not have sufficient equity to satisfy the required withholding requirements under the Income Tax Act
  • We have been the largest Mortgage Alliance brokerage in Canada for 6 years in a row, and we do about 20 deals a year for 9xx SIN buyers; 99% of our customers are unaffected by this.
  • Again, this program is surgical in for who it works for. The program is not for everyone.

 

  1. It may be more difficult to refinance the property (it is not clear whether  the Government will permit refinancing of the first mortgage and postpone their security to the new financing)

Updated rules have been released:

  • The home CAN be refinanced without triggering repayment of the incentive, however, the shared equity mortgage will only be postponed to the outstanding balance that would otherwise be owing under the first ranking mortgage (i.e. no equity take-out will be permitted ahead of the shared equity mortgage).

Note:

  • The combination of all charges on a refinance must not exceed 80%.
  • This program DOES allow Assumption of the mortgage. Standard rules apply: full requalification by the parties assuming the mortgage directly with the lender. The standard on-going ramifications to the seller still apply.
  • This program does NOT allow a PORT of the mortgage to another property. It would have to be paid out at that time.

 

  1. If refinancing of the first mortgage will not be possible without paying out the government’s equity share, then the first mortgage lender will have a captive borrower.  The lender will have no incentive to reduce posted mortgage rates on renewal resulting in substantially higher interest rates in the second and subsequent mortgage terms for the homeowner.
  • As above, the rules do allow the home to be refinanced without triggering repayment of the incentive.
  • The renewal rate offered by the lender is independent of the 2nd charge on title.

Side note: We see that lenders are already applying the “Stress Test” under-the-covers on renewals when calculating the renewal rates. More on my blog here: https://markherman.ca/2019/06/

 

 We love this New Home Buyer Incentive Program – NHBI

Mortgage Mark Herman; Best, Top Calgary Mortgage Broker

Prime Rate Cut; Dec 4, 2019

With the latest developments the Bank of Canada (BoC) has clear path to reduce the Prime rate from 3.95 to probably 3.70%

The Bank of Canada is feeling the pressure to get back into the game with a rate reduction and one obstacle has now been removed.

The bank held its rate the same for an 8th straight meeting on October 30th.

At the same time it has clearly signaled it may not be able to hold that line much longer.

The bank pointed directly at trade conflicts (such as the U.S. – China tariff war) as the key cause of a global economic slowdown and around the world more than 35 other central banks have already cut rates in an effort to keep growth up.

The U.S. Federal Reserve has made three cuts in the past several months.  That has boosted the strength of the Canadian dollar which makes the country’s exports more expensive on the world market which is unwelcome.

Great news that the Bank is not concerned that a drop in interest rates will trigger a renewed frenzy of debt-funded consumer spending.  It is satisfied that the biggest component of household debt – mortgages – have been stabilized by the B-20 regulations.  And another big obstruction has been removed.  The federal election is over so the bank can operate without risking the appearance of political favoritism.

Fixed rates are still the way to go right now.

They are close to the all time 119-year lows right now.

Mortgage Mark Herman

 

payout penalties

1M+ Buyers; When to Use a Broker

For the high-end buyers, we find most people have Private Wealth banks that can pretty much do anything … and we don’t win lots of deals for more than $1M+ unless it is a complicated deal.

If it is complicated, you have a private “general banker” trying to either “figure it out for the first time,” or remember how it works. Not the data a high-end buyer wants to rely on when structuring complicated trades in real estate.

SLIDING SCALE DOWN PAYMENT:

The 1 thing that does make a difference for high end buyers is the sliding scale – where their bank does 20% down on the first $750k and then 50% down on the balance. This 50% on the balance is the deal breaker.

We have Broker-lenders (totally secure, including 1st National, Canada’s largest lender with $110 Billion on the books) that will do 20% down on the entire purchase.

That could be a difference of 200k – 400k of down payment in the end. That often means selling more assets, in turn triggering more tax consequences longer term. A high price to pay for a nice home via your “private wealth” bank.

Summary:

Our big advantages for high-end buyers are:

  1. the Sliding Scale where the bank’s “Risk Dept” will not bend on the LTV/ down payment %.
    • This can save 200k in lower down payment and lower medium-term, tax consequences.
  2. Payout Penalties are 500% – 800% – yes 5x to 8x higher at the Big-6 banks over Broker lenders who use the “old way” to calculate the payout penalties.

Always call a mortgage broker before buying a home. Especially if you are using a Private Wealth Banker. … Mark Herman, Top Calgary Mortgage Broker near me.

History of Economic Bubbles

This is a most interesting info graphic

https://fortunly.com/infographics/historical-financial-bubbles-infographic/

Economic Bubbles: The History, Causes, and Effects

Historical Financial Bubbles Infographic - Featured Illustration

You don’t need to be an expert to understand what economic bubbles are and how they happen. The simplest definition is the rapid and unrealistic inflation of asset prices without any basis in the intrinsic value of the given asset.

Despite the fact that financial bubbles (also known as speculative bubbles) are not rare, people repeatedly fail to recognize speculative trading as it’s happening. Too often, those involved only identify these risky activities in the autopsy. Once the bubble bursts, it’s already too late.

One of the crucial reasons for this is that bubbles are often driven by strong emotions, blurring people’s ability to make rational decisions. When gung-ho traders who are willing to take huge risks start operating in that environment, you have a recipe for disaster.

Investors’ greed (believing that someone will pay more for something than they paid themselves) is accompanied by strong feelings of euphoria (“wow, this investment will be so profitable, let’s buy!”), but also anxiety. Buyers go into denial when prices start to fall (“this is just a temporary reversal, my investment is long-term”). Then, finally, panic sets in, causing a domino effect: everyone starts to sell, ultimately leading to a crash.

A bubble burst can have a devastating effect on the economy, even on a global scale. The most recent example is the Great Recession after the market crash in 2008. However, depending on the economic sector or industry, bubbles can also have some positive effects.

Just consider the dot-com bubble, which forced the information technology industry to consolidate. Although people lost a lot of capital at the time, that money has since been invested many times over in infrastructure, software, servers, and databases. Pretty much every American house and business is now connected to the internet, which has changed how we live and work for good.

The best way to prevent an asset bubble from happening is strategic, common-sense investing. Unfortunately, humans don’t always act sensibly. Bearing that in mind, chances are economic bubbles will continue to occur in the future.

To help you notice these patterns early, we at Fortunly have created an infographic detailing how some of the biggest financial bubbles in history have formed and then burst. Check it out to make sure you don’t fall victim to the hype of “the next big thing.”

Very cool
Mark Herman, Best Calgary Alberta Mortgage Broker

Why you don’t want your mortgage at your main bank

The Big-5 banks do not love you, they love your money, and now they can “trap” you in their mortgages if you fail the Stress Test.

Highlights of the last post are below. The post from January is here: https://markherman.ca/how-the-big-5-banks-trap-you-in-their-mortgages/

The new mortgage rules – called the B20 – allow the banks to renew you at almost any rate they want – or at least not a competitive one – if your credit, income, or debts should mean you can’t change banks.

 If your mortgage is at your main bank they can see:

  • your pay and income going into your accounts
  • debt balances on your credit report
  • what your credit score is
  • your debt payments
  • your home/ rental addresses so they can accurately guess at your home value.

ALL THIS MEANS they can calculate if you can pass the new “Stress Test.”

If you can’t pass it then they know you can’t change banks, are you are now totally locked into them for your renewal. They can renew you at POSTED RATES … 5.34%, not actual discounted rates they offer everyone, today (June 2019) about 2.99%.

The GOOD NEWS is broker banks do not do any of this … so having your mortgage at your main bank only helps them “grind you” later on. …. so how convenient is having your mortgage at your bank now?

Highlights of the article link below are:

Canada’s biggest banks are tightening their grip … as new rules designed to cut out risky lending make it harder for borrowers to switch lenders …  the country’s biggest five banks … are reporting higher rates of renewals by existing customers concerned they will not qualify for a mortgage with another bank.

“B-20 has created higher renewal rates for the big banks, driving volumes and goosing their growth rates,” said an analyst. “It’s had the unintended consequence of reducing competition.”

Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), said last month that mortgage renewal rates [are up …] due in part to the B-20 regulations.

Ron Butler said, “Even if they are up-to-date with their repayments, borrowers may find they don’t qualify with other lenders so they’re stuck with their bank at whatever rate it offers,” he said.

Senior Canadian bankers such as RBC … and TD … voiced their support for the new rules prior to their introduction, saying rising prices were a threat to Canada’s economy.

While analysts say RBC and TD are expected to benefit from higher-than-normal retention rates in 2019, not everyone is sure borrowers will benefit.

“The banks are becoming more sophisticated in targeting borrowers who would fail the stress test and they can charge them higher rates at renewal knowing they can’t move elsewhere,” Butler said.

Variable rates to hold steady for 2019

Here is the latest on changes to the Prime rate for variable mortgages. The news is good as Prime is now expected to stay the same for the balance of 2019!

Remember:

  1. Variable rates can be locked in at any time for what the rates are on the day you lock in on.
  2. The maximum payout fee for is 3 months of interest

Rate hike disappears over the horizon

Apr 22, 2019
from First National Financial LP

The likelihood of a Bank of Canada interest rate increase appears to be getting pushed further and further beyond the horizon.

The Bank is expected to remain on the sidelines again this week when it makes its scheduled rate announcement on Wednesday.

A recent survey by Reuters suggests economists have had a significant change of heart about the Bank’s plans.  Just last month forecasters were calling for quarter-point increase in the third quarter with another hike next year.  Now the betting is for no change until early 2020.  There is virtually no expectation there will any rate cut before the end of next year.

The findings put the Bank of Canada in line with the U.S. Federal Reserve and other major central banks.  World economies have hit a soft spot largely due to trade uncertainties between China and the United States.

This is good news for variables

Mark Herman, Top Calgary Mortgage Broker

RBC: Mortgage Mistakes

RBC made what I think are some some pretty serious – and costly – mistakes for their customers and it is too bad … for the customers!

My 2 favorite quotes from this article are:

“My husband and I both felt pretty robbed,” she said. “I feel … it was deceptive.”

and

“Based on his reading of it, the tone of the bank’s letter to affected customers is “probably an attempt to avoid litigation, because if they took the opposite position then people would be owed money,” he said, noting the letter falls well short of an apology or acceptance of responsibility.

“There is no particular offer … to compensate or provide a small amount of money as a token of having made a mistake,” he said.”

Here is the full article:

https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/rbc-mortgage-story-1.4995421?fbclid=IwAR28myrR_IiMPBhhblYs-gpv1IqtlQExaFv1ruatiWDUrAJwv08DisRPXJY

 

“Always get mortgage advice from a full-time, professional, mortgage broker”

Mortgage Mark Herman; Calgary, Alberta top rated mortgage broker.