Your Mortgage Tidbit – Pre-Payment Penalties

Mortgage Tips Nathan Lawrence 17 Dec

Did you know that when looking at Mortgage Pre-payment penalties, that they are not all created equal??  The formula and penalties themselves are pretty consistent but the numbers they use in those formulas could lead to a Pre-payment penalties that are significantly different from one lender to the next. #MortgageTidbit #NowYouKnow #SaveOnInterest #NotCreatedEqual #WeLoveMortgages

Down Payment Rules Changed

Latest News Nathan Lawrence 11 Dec

Its official.  New Down Payment Rules are going into effect beginning on February 15th 2016.  After years of debate, discussions and rumors about possible changes to the minimum down payment requirements in Canada, the Federal Government this morning announced what those changes will be.   Their goal? To help protect the housing markets in Canada’s hottest real estate markets (Vancouver & Toronto) from potential market swings that would negatively impact a home owners’ equity stake in their home.

The new rules outlined this morning by Finance Minister Bill Morneau will mean an increase to down payment requirements for house hunters that are purchasing a home worth more than $500,000.  A down payment of 10% will required for the portion of the property greater than $500,000.  So here is how it will work:

For Home purchases equal to or less than $500,000 nothing will change.  The minimum down payment will remain at 5% of the purchase price.

For Home Purchases greater than $500,000, here is how the change will impact you:

Assuming a purchase price of $700,000.  A minimum down payment of 5% will be required on the first 500,000.  Followed by a minimum 10% on the remaining amount:

5% Down Payment on $500,000 = $25,000

10% Down Payment on $200,000 = $20,000

Total Down Payment on $700,000 = $45,000

Under the previous down payment requirements the down payment would have been $35,000.  The new rule changes have now resulted in an increase of $10,000 to the down payment for a purchase of $700,000 home.

While these changes will have a significant impact to house hunters in markets like Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary, the changes will have a much smaller impact on the Thunder Bay market given that our average sale price here is well below $500,000.    There will be some house hunters that will be impacted in Thunder Bay by these changes; however, most of the house hunters in Thunder Bay above the $500,000 price point tend to be repeat buyers.   With our strong real estate market these past few years, home owners have realized very modest gains in property values on their current home. When they sell their current home and use that equity for their next purchase, the new down payment measures will likely not hinder their next planned purchase.  For first time home owners that are looking at a homes valued at more that $500,000, it will mean that they will need to plan for a  larger down payment.

If you have been pre-approved for financing but have not yet purchased a home, we would suggest that you take a few minutes today to contact your Mortgage Specialist to see how these changes will impact your plans and pre-approval.

If you have any additional questions about how these changes will impact you personally, please feel free to contact our Team as we would be more than happy to help answer any questions you have.


Create a Magical Home for the Holidays

General Nathan Lawrence 10 Dec

Christmas time is my favourite time of the year. I love everything about it! Christmas lights, Christmas songs, Christmas baking, and spending time with family and friends. I always look forward to decorating my home at Christmas and look for ways to make my home feel magical and cheery during the holiday season.

I love to decorate but don’t necessarily love covering the entire house with Christmas decorations. I try to stay away from clutter and not too many “Knick knacks”.  I like to keep it simple, “less is more”. Here are a few decorating ideas for the season to help set the tone for the Christmas spirit. Start with the core of your home which usually is your living room and pick a few decorative pieces that make a statement.

Your Christmas tree is a good start and the easiest to make your center piece. Consider choosing a color scheme other than your traditional red and green for your tree, this will have an impact on making a statement.   Select a theme to fit your design style, for example a glitzy glam scheme with shimmering colors like golds and silvers or for rustic charm color scheme choose browns, creams, or blues. Finally, get fun and creative with your ornaments, add texture, sparkle, natural and oversized ornaments, ribbons, and the perfect tree topper to help achieve your desired look.

Christmas is a happy time of the year shared with family and friends. It all about adding magic! And what better way to welcome the Christmas spirit by turning your home into a magical place to enjoy during the holidays!

Great News for Ontario Home Buyers …

Latest News Nathan Lawrence 1 Dec

For the past month, the Ontario Government has been talking and thinking about expanding the Land Transfer Tax to allow municipalities to charge home buyers a Land Transfer Tax on top of the tax already charged by the Ontario Government.

A change like this, would have instantly made it much more costly and more difficult for house hunters to buy a home.  For the past month, countless industry professionals (locally this includes the local Thunder Bay Real Estate Board and Salespeople) have been working hard to protect buyers by working to lobby our Provincial Leaders.

SUCCESS!  This afternoon, reported in the National Post… (See full article here) has announced that the Ontario Government had decided to not move forward with their plans to allow municipalities to also charge Land Transfer Tax.  This is a huge win for home owners and future home owners in Ontario.

Have any additional questions, please feel free to contact me anytime.