Mortgage Rate News

Why Do Mortgage Rates Vary by Province?

When it comes to getting the lowest mortgage rate, where you live matters. Someone searching RateSpy.com from Halifax, for example, sees 2.49% as today’s lowest 5-year fixed mortgage rate. Meanwhile, someone in Vancouver with the exact same qualifications sees 2.32%. Both of those rates are clearly exceptional, but 0.17 percentage points is still 0.17 percentage points. We’re talking about $1,593 of interest differential on a standard $200,000 five-year...

Meridian Throws a 1.69% Curveball at the Banks

“The major banks are raising mortgage rates. Low rates won’t last.” That’s the message people have been fed for the last few months. Well, Meridian is changing the message. Ontario’s largest credit union just announced a strikingly low 1.69% one-year fixed rate. That’s the cheapest standard mortgage in Canada according to RateSpy’s database of 364 lenders and top brokers. Meridian loves being...

Sub-zero Yields & Cheaper Fixed Mortgages

It’s fashionable to be negative these days.  To have a negative yield, that is.  Since 2012, it’s been increasingly common for government bonds to have interest rates (yields) below zero. Not only are investors in those bonds earning no return, they’re actually paying to save—i.e., paying for governments to hold their money safely. Mortgage Implications Global yields matter in a mortgage context because fixed rates are closely...

The BoC & Mortgage Rates

No rate-cut drama today. The Bank of Canada left its key lending rate at 0.50% this morning, a move expected by about half the market. Mortgage Impact: Banks weren’t about to cut prime by more than 5-15 basis points anyway (a basis point is 1/100th of a per cent), so this news is not overly momentous for variable-rate mortgage holders—not in the near-term...

The Bank of Canada Countdown

A feeling or state of nervousness or excitement caused by wondering what will happen. That’s the definition of suspense. And that’s what the financial community is feeling right now about Wednesday’s Bank of Canada rate meeting. Will “The Poloz” chop the overnight rate in half, from 0.50% to 0.25%? Or will he stick in “wait and see” mode, and hope the devalued loonie...

Don’t Fear the Rate Blip

It’s been six whole days since RBC unexpectedly hiked mortgage rates, encouraging a herd of banks to follow its lead. But my oh my, how things can change in just one week. Interest rates outside the mortgage market have plummeted and rates are about to change…again. That’s got many thinking RBC’s rate hikes were just a blip (at least for fixed rates). If you’re a mortgage shopper,...

RBC Did What?

Mega-lender RBC announced today that it is raising 2- to 5-year fixed rates by 10 basis points and variable rates by 15 bps. (A basis point is 1/100th of a percentage point.) Is this a practical joke? RBC is lifting mortgage rates despite 5-year bond yields nearing four-month lows? That’s what many may be asking, but this is no joke....

The Fed Moves

Here are five things to know about Wednesday’s 1/4% U.S. rate hike: It’s over and done with, and it’s about time. Talking heads have yacked about the start of Fed tightening for years now. Meanwhile, the big event finally happened yesterday and bond yields (which guide fixed mortgage rates) barely moved. Yes, the Fed’s actions could push up Canadian long-term rates somewhat, out of sympathy alone. But ultimately...

Mortgage Briefs – Down Payments & Rates

As we turn the page on 2015, get ready for a host of new mortgage trends in the next 12 months. We’ll see new down payment rules, more talk of negative interest rates, and surprising moves with bond yields. Analysts are already making their predictions on how mortgage shoppers will be affected. Here’s a glimpse of what they’re saying now: On Higher Down Payments Last week the...

Rate Surveillance: Fixed-Variable Spreads Narrow

The latest mortgage rate intel… Variable rates. The fix is in?: Variable rates have gone vertical, ramping up 25-35 basis points in a matter of weeks. It seems like every 6-7 days we’re hearing banks cut discounts from prime by another 5 bps or so. This week was no exception. Sure, the banks have faced an array of funding cost pressures, but nothing...