How a job loss affects your mortgage approval

money house - what if you lose your job
Mortgage Mark Herman’s money house

If you’ve been thinking about buying a house, you’ve probably considered how much you can afford in mortgage payments. Have you also thought about what would happen if you lost your source of income?

While the sudden loss of employment is always a possibility, the current uncertainty of our economy has made more people think about the stability of their income. Whether you’ve already made an offer on a home or you’ve just started looking, here is how job loss could affect your mortgage approval.

What role does employment play in mortgage approval?

In addition to ensuring you earn enough to afford a mortgage payment; mortgage lenders want to see that you have a history of consistent income and are likely to in the future. Consistent employment is the best way to demonstrate that.

To qualify for any mortgage, you’ll need proof of sufficient, reliable income. Your mortgage broker will walk you through the income documents your lender will need to verify you’re employed and earning enough income. So, if your employment situation is questionable, you may want to reconsider a home purchase until your employment is more secure.

Should you continue with your home purchase after you’ve lost your job?

What if you’ve already qualified for a mortgage, and your employment circumstances change? Simply put, you must tell your lender. Hiding that information might be considered fraud, and your lender will find out when they verify your information prior to closing.

If you’ve already gone through the approval process, then you know that your lender is looking for steady income and employment.

Here are some possible scenarios where you may be able to continue with your purchase:

  • If you secure another job right away and the job is in the same field as your previous employment. You will still have to requalify, and it may end up being for less than the original loan, but you may be able to continue with your home purchase. Be aware, if your new employer has a probationary period (usually three months), you might not be approved. Consult your broker.
  • If you have a co-signer on your mortgage, and that person earns enough to qualify on their own, you may be able to move forward. Be sure your co-signer is aware of your employment situation.
  • If you have other sources of income that do not come from employment, they may be considered. The key factors are the amount and consistency of the income. Income from retirement plans, rentals, investments, and even spousal or child support payments may be considered under the right circumstances.

Can you use your unemployment income when applying for a mortgage?

Generally, Employment Insurance income can’t be used to qualify for a mortgage. The exceptions for most financial institutions are seasonal workers or people with cyclical employment in industries such as fishing or construction. In this situation, you’ll be asked to show at least a two-year cycle of employment followed by Employment Insurance benefits.

However, it’s not the ideal situation and most lenders won’t be willing to approve your mortgage under those conditions.

What happens if you’re furloughed (temporary leave of absence)?

Not all job losses are permanent. As we’ve seen during the COVID-19 pandemic, many workers were put on temporary leave. If you’ve already been approved for a mortgage and are closing on a house, your lender might take a “wait-and-see” approach and delay the closing if you can demonstrate you’ve only been furloughed. In these cases, you’ll need a letter from your employer that has a return-to-work date on it. Keep in mind, if you don’t return to work before your closing date, your lender will likely cancel the approval and ask for a re-

submission later.

If you haven’t started the application process, it would be wise to wait until you are back to work for at least three months to demonstrate consistent employment.

Your credit score and debt servicing ratios may change because of lost income, which means you may no longer meet your lender’s qualifications for a mortgage. While it may not be possible, try to avoid accumulating debt or missing any payments while unemployed.

Talk to your mortgage broker.

 

“You don’t want to get locked into a mortgage you can’t afford.

You also don’t want to lose a deposit on a home because you lost your financing.

When trying to assess if it’s better to move forward or walk away, we should be your first call.”

Mortgage Mark Herman; Calgary Alberta Mortgage Broker

 

$37,000 Payout Penalty at CIBC

The latest in giant payout penalties, this one was $47,291.

Here is a person – one of my ACTUAL ALMOST-Customers who had to swallow a surprise at TD for $35,000. (We tried 3 times to get him to not take that mortgage.)

To make this even more mind blowing, at a 39% tax rate that is $65,700 the person has to pay … about the same as 1-year of income at a full time job, without tax taken off.

  • Would you work for 1 year to give it all to your bank if you had to sell or move or close down the mortgage for any reason?
  • Would you sign an agreement like that?
  • Have you already signed an agreement like this without knowing you have?

EASY to AVOID …

You don’t need to add in this risk to your home purchase. It is easy to get around by taking a mortgage from a major Broker Bank.

Broker banks calculate the payouts the “old way” which was way more fair to you, the buyer. Click here for the posts about payout penalties.

Broker banks also have better Terms & Conditions than the Big-6.

Link to the article: https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/american-who-sold-home-in-toronto-shocked-by-47-000-mortgage-penalty-1.5212884

“Broker Banks have better T&C than all of the Big-6. Call a mortgage broker first.”

Mortgage Mark Herman, Top Rated Calgary Mortgage Broker

 

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.

Top Calgary Mortgage Broker

Updates to CMHC First Time Buyer Incentive Program

In March the federal government unveiled changes to the budget that included an interesting opportunity for prospective first time home buyers through an enticing program that they called a “shared equity mortgage”. This program could see Canada’s housing agency (CMHC) kicking in up to 10% of the purchase price of a home if certain conditions are met, therefore bringing down the mortgage load and monthly payment for first time home buyers.

In June, the federal government released further details for the new CMHC program. Under the fine print for the First Time Home Buyer Incentive Program, which will officially launch in September, the program is limited to first time buyers who earn under $120,000 annually. The CMHC would kick in up to 10% of the purchase price of the home, as long as the borrower comes up with the minimum down payment for an insured mortgage, which is currently 5%.

An additional stipulation is that the total value of the mortgage, plus the kick in from CMHC don’t exceed $480,000. According to government officials, this means the program will really only aid those shopping for properties worth a maximum of about $565,000, regardless of whether or not they have met the other requirements.

The “loan” from CMHC would be interest free, meaning no compounding costs to pay down, like a mortgage does. In exchange for its stake, the government says CMHC would get to participate “in the upside and downside of the change in the property value” – meaning they would be entitled to any corresponding increase in the value of a home when the buyer sells. On the other hand, CMHC would also be responsible for any share of the loss if the property depreciates.

This means on a home costing $500,000, if the buyer contributes $25,000 (5% down payment) and CMHC kicks in the same amount, CMHC would own 5% of the home. If the home were to appreciate to $600,000 when the home owner wants to sell, they would have to pay 5% of the sale price – in this case, $30,000 – not the original $25,000 CMHC contributed to begin with. Therefore, there will always be a bill to pay down the line. With that said, the kick in from CMHC would reduce the mortgage load and monthly payments, therefore making it easier for first time buyers to save over the life of the loan.

This table from CBC News shows the impact of a borrower of CMHC’s program. On the left is the cost if they went it alone. On the right shows how qualifying for CMHC program makes the same house more affordable:

Savings Over Time

While many are in support of the new program because it will help first time buyers and families across Canada, some financial advisers are not so sure. Rajiv Bissessur says “the program will likely help some people, but ultimately it amounts to just another form of debt for over leveraged borrowers.” It is an interest free loan, but a loan that will need to be paid back nonetheless.

Bissessur also said the cap of $480,000 won’t do much to help people who are shopping in more expensive markets, who are ultimately the people who need it the most.

The program must be paid back within 25 years, or whenever the buyer decides to sell. There is no financial penalty for buying CMHC out of its stake at any time, however homeowners will have to pay CMHC the fair share of the value of the home at the time.

We have yet to see if this program will prove to be “worth it” or if it is election promises.
Mark Herman, top Calgary Alberta mortgage broker
This blog was adapted from this article by CBC News

How the Big-5 Banks Trap You in Their Mortgages

Yes, the Big-5 banks do not love you, they love your money.
 
 
Now they can “trap” you in their mortgages with the Stress Test to get more of your money that they love!
 
 
Highlights of the article below show how 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:
 
  • what your credit score is
  • your pay and income going into your accounts
  • your debt payments
  • other debt balances on your credit report
  • your home/ rental addresses so they can accurately guess at your home value.
 
AND 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 … 5.39%, not actual discounted rates they offer everyone, today about 3.69%.
 
 
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 Eight Capital analyst Steve Theriault. “It’s had the unintended consequence of reducing competition.”

Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), the country’s biggest lender, said last month that mortgage renewal rates [are up …] due in part to the B-20 regulations and also to improvements it has made to make it easier for customers to renew.

Ron Butler, owner of Toronto-based brokerage Butler Mortgage, said the changes leave borrowers with less choice.

“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.

Link to the full article is here: https://business.financialpost.com/news/fp-street/canadas-big-banks-tighten-grip-on-mortgage-market-after-rule-changes

We saw the “Mortgage Renewal Trap” coming long ago when the Stress Test was announced. It is more important than ever to consider Mortgage Broker Lenders for your mortgage now.

Mark Herman, Top Calgary Alberta Mortgage Broker.

payout penalties

Fixed-Rate Mortgage Penalties: Larger Than Ever!

math for IRD calculations

Many people are unaware the Big-6 banks, and all the banks you can walk into, calculate the payout penalties at much higher amounts than mortgage broker lenders.

The cost of how penalties are calculated is even more concerning when fixed-mortgage rates stay flat or rise slightly over an extended period – exactly what is happening right now.

Summary:

  • You could be looking at an extra $7,000 in penalty cost on a $250,000 mortgage, or an extra $11,200 on a $400,000 mortgage, that is broken two years early with any Big-6 lender.
  • Mortgage broker lenders still calculate the payout “the old way” – to your advantage!

Short Version:

Fixed-rate mortgage penalties are almost always calculated based on “the greater of three months interest or interest-rate differential (IRD)”. But there are key differences in the actual rates lenders use to calculate your IRD.

  • These differences are magnified in a flat or slightly rising interest-rate environment.
  • This is a big deal as the IRD calculations used by the banks below can trigger a penalty that is more than 5 times what you would be charged at a wide range of other lenders.

Long Version – hold on this is MATH!

Let’s say your current mortgage balance is $250,000 on a five-year fixed rate mortgage at 2.59%. We’ll also assume that you are three years into your term (with two years remaining) and that interest rates are the same when you break your mortgage as they were when you first got your loan.

First, we calculate the cost of three month’s interest, which we can quickly determine is $1,619.

Here is the formula we use to arrive at that number:

2.59% x $250,000 x 3/12 = $1,619

We then compare this cost to the cost of your IRD penalty, which will almost always be calculated using one of three methods: Standard, Discounted or Posted.

 

  1. The Standard IRD Penalty (used by Mortgage Broker Banks)

When using a standard IRD penalty calculation, your lender starts by taking the difference between your contract rate (2.59%) and their current rate that most closely matches your remaining term. Since you have two years left on your mortgage,  that would be the lender’s two-year fixed rate (we’ll use 2.29%, which is widely available today). The difference between these two rates is 0.30%.

The lender multiplies this difference (0.30%) by your mortgage balance ($250,000) and the time remaining on your mortgage (expressed as the number of months remaining on your mortgage divided by twelve).

Here is the complete formula:     (3.29% – 2.99%) x $250,000 x (24/12) = $1,500

And here is a table which explains where each number in the formula came from:

Standard IRD Calculation

2.59% = Your contract rate

2.29% = current rate the most closely matches your remaining term

$250,000 = remaining mortgage balance

24 = months remaining

$1,500 = IRD Penalty charged

That’s it; the standard IRD calculation. It is used by a wide range of lenders who compete with each other to offer borrowers the best mortgage rates available.

In this case the cost of three months’ interest ($1,619) is greater than the lender’s Standard IRD calculation ($1,500), so you would have to pay $1,619 to break your mortgage.

AND here is where the differences are: well-known lenders have tweaked their IRD calculations to skew the interest rates used in their formulas heavily in their favour, and as you will now see, that can have a huge impact on the size of your penalty.

 

  1. The Discounted Rate IRD Penalty (Used by RBC, BMO, TD, Scotia and National Bank)

When using the Discounted Rate Penalty, the lender takes your contract rate and compares it to the posted rate that most closely matches your remaining term MINUS the original discount you got off of their five-year posted rate (which in this case is 2.05%). Here is the contract wording taken straight from TD’s website. Key section is underlined:

{Your contract rate will be reduced by] the current interest rate that we can now charge for a mortgage term offered by us with the term closest to your remaining term. The interest rate will be our posted interest rate for the term minus the most recent discount you received.}

In other words, this lender will take the discount they gave you off of their five-year posted rate and apply that same discount to the posted two-year rate they use in your penalty calculation.

This tweak makes a big difference to the cost of your penalty and is blatantly one-sided because lenders don’t discount shorter-term fixed-rate mortgages nearly as deeply as they do their five-year terms (.30% vs. 2.05% using this same lender’s rate sheet as of today).

The table below shows you the key numbers used to calculate the Discounted Rate IRD penalty:

Discounted –Rate IRD Calculation

2.59% = Your contract rate

2.84% = current rate the most closely matches your remaining term

2.05% = discount you received on your original Contract Rate

0.79% = 2-year rate used to calculate your penalty

$250,000 = remaining mortgage balance

24 = months remaining

$9,000 = IRD Penalty charged

Yes, Ouch!

But fasten your seat belt because other major lenders dig even deeper into your wallet. The Grand Daddy of them all is the Posted Rate IRD Penalty.

 

  1. The Posted Rate IRD Penaltythe Real Pain (Used by CIBC)

Here is a breakdown of CIBC’s posted-rate penalty calculation:

In this variation, the lender calculates your IRD penalty using the five-year posted rate that they were offering when you got your mortgage. Here is a sample of the wording used to explain how the penalty is calculated (taken from CIBC’s website). Underlined, key sections:

The interest rate differential amount is the difference between the Interest on the Prepaid Amount for the remainder of the term at the posted rate at the time you took out the mortgage, and interest on the Prepaid Amount for the Remainder of the Term using a Comparable Posted Rate. Interest is calculated at the interest rate posted by [the lender] for a mortgage product similar to your mortgage product on the date the payout statement is prepared.

Now CIBC’s defence of this tactic is that they substitute posted rates for both your original rate and the rate that most closely matches your remaining term. But as we have already outlined above, this is a terrible trade that no informed person would make because Big-6 lenders must make huge discounts to their five-year posted rates to make them competitive with market five-year fixed rates, and those same discounts shrink dramatically on shorter fixed-rate terms.

If we used the same rates in this example that we used in the discounted-rate method outlined above, the posted-rate method would yield the same sized penalty. But CIBC’s posted rates tend to be higher (which they were at the time this post was written), and for that reason, their penalties earn the moniker of “The Grand Daddy of Them All”.

Here is what that small change to the wording in your contract does to your penalty:

Posted-Rate IRD Calculation

4.79% = 5-year posted rate that was offered when you got your mortgage

2.84% = current rate the most closely matches your remaining term

$250,000 = remaining mortgage balance

24 = months remaining

$9,750 = IRD Penalty charged

 

Long Summary – thanks for getting this far!

Don’t be Surprised. These inflated mortgage penalties generate substantial profits for the lenders who use them and when uninformed borrowers choose to negotiate directly with their lender, is it that hard to imagine that some of those lenders would word the fine print to their advantage.

To be clear, there is not a problem with mortgage penalties in principle. When you break a mortgage contract, your lender incurs costs when they unwind agreements related to your loan (these agreements can relate to hedging, servicing, secularization etc.). The penalty charged is supposed to cover these costs while also recouping part of the lender’s lost profit. Fair enough. That’s why they’re called “closed mortgages”. But is it fair for some lenders to use these early terminations as “gotcha” moments?

There is no way on earth that the average Canadian mortgage borrower has any idea that there are significant differences in the way fixed-rate mortgage penalties are calculated, and the largest Canadian lenders, who have milked that lack of awareness to their advantage for years, have been in no hurry to explain it to them.

Summary: a conscientious and well informed independent mortgage planner should be able to explain how penalties are charged by any lender they are recommending.

The Details: What you need to know about “discount mortgages.”

Grandma always said, “The price is the price, but the details are the details!”

There are discounted and restricted mortgage rates out there but they do not share the details of their disadvantages up front with you.

  1. Restricted or Limited Products / Bait & Switch

People will not even sign a 3 year cell- phone contact any more but they will try to save $15 a month on a restricted mortgage; which could cost them $30,000 as a payout penalty – BUYER BEWARE is what the regulators say.

Brokers often advertise these products to get you to call them and then they switch you into a “regular product” if you are lucky – or you get a “restricted product” that you probably do not want if you know all the details.

Discount mortgages called “limited” or “restricted” and often have:

  • No rate holds
  • Only monthly payments
  • Only 1 statement a year
  • No on-line administration = call centre only
  • Only 5/5 extra repayment option – most broker lenders are 15/15 + 2x or 20/20
    • The 1st number is the % of the original mortgage amount you can repay every year without penalty
    • The 2nd number is the increase in monthly payment in % you can do without penalty.
    • The 2x = double the payment!
  • And they use the bank payout penalty calculations – as below in the Dirty Trick – AND in addition to that penalty, a 3% fee of the entire mortgage balance added to the penalty!
    • This could easily end up at $30,000.

 The other main “Details” that are not often disclosed are:

2.Collateral Charge

To keep you from leaving the bank for a lower rate when you renew later, the banks register your mortgage as a collateral charge – which is the same as an “I owe you” / IOU for the home. Other banks will not take another banks IOU for a mortgage; which means:

  • A lawyer will have to re-register your mortgage at land titles; $1000.
  • An appraisal is needed as the registration is usually for more than the value  of the home; $450

3. The “Dirty Trick” of how the banks calculate your payout penalty

To avoid these products, or to disucss what your personal situation may be, call us any time at 403-681-4376.

Mark Herman, Top Calgary, Alberta, mortgage broker for renewals, first time home buyers and home purchases.

A lesson from RBC’s mortgage rate increase

I love this article from the Globe as it explains why rates are going up a bit and what expectaions are for the near term.

Call for a rate hold if you are thinking of buying in the next 4 months!

“Borrowers who use a mortgage broker pay less …,” Bank of Canada.

See our reviews here: https://www.markherman.ca/CustomerREVIEWS.ubr

Mark Herman, Top best Calgary mortgage broker

The lesson home buyers should take from RBC’s mortgage rate hike

TD collecting all your data on-line

TD does collateral registrations and also look at everything you do on line. Not only do they love your money, they also love your data!

Stop trusting the big banks and talk to a mortgage broker to protect your data and your money.

Mark Herman, Top Calgary Alberta Mortgage Broker.

 

TD Visa customers’ browsing activities open to ‘surveillance’ by bank

Bank denies collecting general information about what customers do online

By Rosa Marchitelli, Go Public, Posted: Nov 30, 2015 5:00 AM ETLast Updated: Nov 30, 2015 9:11 PM ET

A B.C. man decided to Go Public after discovering Canada’s second-biggest bank can access and collect information on all of its customers’ online activities, even those that aren’t banking-related.

 

Colin Laughlan is one of thousands of Canadians who had his Visa cards switched from CIBC to TD in 2014 after the Aeroplan rewards program changed banks.

“When I saw this — I really had to read it two or three times to make myself believe I was reading what I was reading,” he said.

He points to two lines in the 66-page Visa cardholder agreement that allows TD to collect details about anything — and everything — customers do online.

Under the privacy section of the cardholder agreement:

“COLLECTING AND USING YOUR INFORMATION — At the time you request to begin a relationship with us and during the course of our relationship, we may collect information including:

  • Details about your browsing activity on your browser or mobile device.
  • Your preferences and activities.

Laughlan, from Vancouver, has a background in privacy issues as a former journalist and communications specialist. He said his radar was up when his new TD Visa card and cardholder agreement arrived in the mail.

“I couldn’t see any reason they had to do that sort of surveillance on Canadians and they weren’t being particularly forthright about it. This was slipped into the fine print of the policy and I’m well aware that the vast majority of people don’t read these things,” he said.

Laughlan said it took almost a year before his complaint finally reached TD’s privacy office.

TD’s privacy office crossed out the lines that Colin Laughlan found problematic in his cardholder agreement and an official signed them. (CBC)

The bank eventually apologized ….

http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/td-visa-clients-browsing-open-to-surveillance-by-bank-1.3339148?cmp=googleeditorspick&google_editors_picks=true