28 May



Posted by: Adriaan Driessen

Industry & Market Highlights 

The Benchmark Qualifying Rate Dropped from 5.04% to 4.94%

Announcement on Monday, May 25th from the Bank of Canada that the Benchmark rate dropped from 5.04% to 4.94%.  This means that the average household income purchasing power has increased slightly and that you may qualify for on average $3k to $7k more in your maximum purchase price point.  It is not going to make a large difference you your qualifying, but for many first time home buyer every little bit helps.  Contact us for more information!


Housing market beginning to normalize after historically bad April: TD

Home sales dropped off a cliff in markets across Canada to what TD Senior Economist Brian DePratto called “historically depressed levels” in April.

It was enough to give most market observers whiplash as the year started on such an upbeat note that some commentators were even worrying that areas of the market were at risk of overheating during what was expected to be a blazing hot spring homebuying season.

But as the COVID-19 pandemic bore down on Canada, buyers began stepping to the sidelines before eventually being forced to do so by strict physical distancing measures introduced to curb the virus’ spread and the economic turbulence that came with it.

The result was a countrywide drop in sales activity last month that blew past any decline recorded during the 2008-2009 Global Financial Crisis for the worst for volume since 1984.

The enormity of the declines thankfully did not blindside housing market experts who had been predicting a huge, but temporary, hit to activity. And with April behind us, the market will now begin the steep, long climb back to some version of normalcy.

“With April in the rear-view, we can start talking about ever so tentative improvements in sales activity as provinces begin to gradually re-open their economies,” wrote TD’s DePratto in a research note late last week.

“We do expect sales to remain depressed for a few months longer as job markets slowly improve and buyers remain cautious, but a normalization process is likely already underway,” he continued.

DePratto’s counterpart on RBC’s economics team, Robert Hogue, issued a similar prediction that April’s activity levels would be as bad as things get for Canada’s resale housing market.

“Provinces are beginning to relax some restrictions—including Quebec earlier this week lifting its lockdown orders on the real estate industry—which will help house hunting function a little more normally going forward in parts of the country,” wrote Hogue in a note published Friday.

“Exceptionally low interest rates will also contribute to a gradual recovery taking hold in most markets across Canada,” he added.

Hogue went on to point out that the Canadian Real Estate Association, which released its grim April sales and pricing data on Friday, noted that it had already observed an uptick in sales and listings in its preliminary data for May.  By Sean MacKay.


Residential Market Commentary – Downplaying dire doomsayers

As the Canadian economy starts its slow walk back toward normalcy, or towards whatever the new normal is going to be, Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz is calling out the doomsayers.

With about a week to go before he steps aside on June 2, Poloz says he believes the economy is on track for a healthy recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, starting in the second quarter of this year.

“Where we are today suggests we’re still tracking to our best-case scenario … not the dire scenario,” Poloz told reporters during a video roundtable last week.

“I do believe the… [pessimism]… I’m hearing is a little too dire.  It’s a little overblown,” he said.

To Poloz’s way of thinking, too many forecasters are fixating on the collapse of the country’s GDP.  But he points out that the underlying “behavioral adjustment” by people, the “downward spiral in confidence” normally associated with recession and depression is not occurring.

The Governor’s theory appears to be born-out, at least modestly, by the latest read on consumer confidence by the Conference Board of Canada.  The figures for May show a 16 point increase in confidence from the record low of 47.5 hit in April. 

The index now sits at 63.7 points.  That is still 60 points below the pre-lockdown reading in February.  But the numbers are also improving as Canadians look ahead.  There is less pessimism about future finances and worries about future employment have also eased.  By First National Financial. 


Separating during the pandemic: What homeowners need to know

COVID-19 has impacted all sectors of the economy, including real estate. The uncertainty is particularly challenging for homeowners who are at a crossroad in their relationship or in the process of separating.

The heightened tension created by the pandemic can fuel anger and conflict, leaving children especially vulnerable. If it becomes too tense in the residence and someone needs to leave, the process has become a little more challenging than before, but there are still viable options.

Should homeowners sell when there is a separation during the pandemic?

At the time of writing, real estate remains a sellers’ market with little supply. It may be more difficult for families in need of alternative living arrangements to allow for a physical separation.

It is also challenging for couples to get an accurate value of their property because the markets are in such flux. Compounding this is the difficulty for a spouse to qualify for a mortgage if their income has been affected by a layoff or a termination as a result of the coronavirus. With such an overwhelming scenario and an uncertain economy, now may not be the best time to make important decisions such as selling the family home.

It may make more sense to access short-term rental accommodation during the pandemic while the legalities of the separation are sorted. The protocols for finding a rental property have changed to accommodate physical distancing, with virtual showings, and only people with serious offers may be able to attend in person to see the place before finalizing the offer to lease.

Consider the best interest of children

Couples struggle to know if it is in their children’s best interest to stay together under the same roof, even if there is a lot of acrimony, or if it’s better to live physically apart.

While it’s likely harmful to the children’s well-being if the family stays together under tense or acrimonious circumstances, there may also be harm to the children if a parent leaves without a formal parenting plan in place. Struggling parents should look for counsellors, lawyers, mediators and financial planners who now offer their services by phone or videoconference, to get quick, professional guidance toward the solutions that work best for the family’s circumstances.

Who pays what?

Money is often the biggest source of conflict, and this could get worse if someone’s livelihood was affected by the pandemic. They struggle to find a fair way to pay the household expenses and the children’s expenses after the decision to separate has been made – even if they continue to live under the same roof.

While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, there are many ways to deal with expenses. It depends on a number of factors, including who has financial resources. It may make sense to continue the same arrangements that were in place before the decision to separate until professionals can guide the family towards different arrangements.

In some cases, couples put an agreed amount of money in a joint account and use that to pay family expenses until there is a more long-term arrangement in place. Sometimes, separating spouses may even be able to structure their payments in a way that maximizes tax savings. It should be noted that if a couple decides to live in two separate residences during separation, these expenses are shared equally.

Family laws are fairly complex when it comes to finances and money, and it is recommended to speak to a family law lawyer or mediator about these types of questions.

Legal ways to separate

Among the various legal approaches, there are two very good options for separating families, and they are collaborative negotiations and mediation. These two systems are encouraged as the first choice under Ontario’s revised Family Law Act, to help families reach agreements out of court with the aim of preserving some kind of relationship after the legal process is complete. The cost also tends to be less than going to court.

Professionals that work in these two systems have received special negotiation and communication training, using specific techniques that are very beneficial to helping their clients and families.

Especially with courts closed during the pandemic, and only urgent matters being heard, collaborative negotiation and mediation offer fantastic avenues for couples to quickly access help and find solutions that are best for their family’s needs.  By Nathalie Boutet. 


OREA sets new ground rules for realtors as Ontario’s economy restarts

The Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) has published its latest guidelines on home purchase transactions in the era of COVID-19.

“The health and safety of our realtors and their clients is OREA’s top priority during this pandemic,” said Sean Morrison, president of OREA. “As Ontario’s economy reopens, many Ontarians are looking to get back into the real estate market. Realtors are here to help make home buyers and sellers feel comfortable and safe while they work to find their dream home. OREA’s guidelines have been informed by up-to-date information from public health, best practices from the industry and experiences in jurisdictions across North America.”

OREA was among the earliest organizations to have petitioned a shift to mostly online transactions once the coronavirus pandemic took hold in late March.

“Now that the Ontario government has announced stage one of its plan to re-open the economy and with many consumers looking to get back into the market, it is important that realtors continue to help their clients feel safe and secure and keep the virus at bay,” OREA said in a statement this week.

The association is mandating its agents to “continue [using] virtual tools, conduct virtual open houses and virtual showings to the greatest extent possible,” despite the restarting of the economy. This includes maximizing the use of phone, email, and video communications with clients, as well as processing all documents via electronic channels.

Agents should also “thoroughly disinfect surfaces, leave doors open and keep lights on at all times during in-person showings,” OREA said. “When interacting with clients, maintain physical distancing and use personal protective equipment when distancing is not possible.”  By Ephraim Vecina. 


Pandemic disruptions won’t cause new home supply shortage: BMO

After a good showing in April, the team at BMO Economics is confident that home construction across Canada won’t see a major disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A report from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) published late last week saw housing starts in April rise 11 percent over the same period last year despite the significant economic turbulence caused by the pandemic.

While starts still declined from March’s activity levels before the pandemic’s impact was fully felt, BMO Senior Economist Robert Kavcic called the home construction activity level “solid” amid shutdowns across many other sectors. Housing starts measure how many homes began construction during a given period and are generally viewed as a key factor in determining market health.

“Indeed, construction is one sector that appears to have skated through April with less damage than most, given softer restrictions and the ability to social distance on site,” wrote Kavcic in a research note.

With his relatively upbeat commentary, Kavcic joins fellow industry experts at TD and real estate consultancy Altus Group in predicting that home construction across the country would likely be less vulnerable to the disruptive effects of the pandemic than other sectors of the economy and even segments of the real estate industry.

Altus Group had published a projection last month that Canadian homebuilding would bounce back by July, but this was before the encouraging and prediction-defying April construction figures were published.

“One takeaway from this is that we’re not likely to see any material [housing] supply shortage coming out the other side, and the bigger risk for housing is that demand is more permanently depressed if the job market isn’t able to come back strongly,” wrote Kavcic.

The recession’s duration and the ultimate scale of the job loss caused by the virus are key questions economists have been grappling with when making predictions about the ability of the Canadian housing market to regain momentum after the worst effects of the pandemic have subsided.

Many in the industry, both in resale and new construction, are pinning their hopes on homebuyers sidelined during the crisis returning to the market in the late summer and fall, resulting in a late-year home sales rebound.

Those in the homebuilding industry have had plenty of reasons to celebrate so far this month with the better than expected housing starts data and the Ontario provincial government continuing to loosen restrictions on home construction activities.

But, as Kavcic pointed out, this is only one side of the supply and demand equation.  By Sean MacKay


Home sales fall, debt worries rise

The latest statistics from the Canadian Real Estate Association are stark but they should not be surprising.  April sales hit a 36-year low, down nearly 57% from a month earlier and down almost 58% year-over-year.

As with March, though, average prices remained steady.  Compared to a year ago the national average dipped 1.3% to just over $488,000.  With Toronto and Vancouver taken out of the calculation the national average drops by nearly $100,000.

CREA points out that its composite Home Price Index shows an increase of almost 6.5% YoY.

The association is not offering any forecasts on sales or prices going forward.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to run roughshod through the housing market, the Bank of Canada is repeating its concerns about high household debt.  The Bank sees the number of vulnerable households – those that put more than 40% of their income toward debt payments – increasing and falling behind on loan payments. 

Calculations by the BoC indicate that up to one-in-five home-owning households do not have enough money to cover two months of expenses.  One-third do not have enough to cover four months.  Some 700,000 households have received deferrals, so far.

The central bank’s projections see the mortgage arrears rate climbing by about 0.8%, peaking next year when payment deferral plans offered by lenders start to expire.  This is the Bank’s current, worst case scenario.  The current mortgage arrears rate stands at just 0.2%.  By First National Financial.   


Key trends indicate slower housing market for rest of 2020

Flagging immigration numbers along with much-reduced purchasing power will pull down market activity for the rest of the year, according to the latest TeranetNational Bank of Canada House Price Index.

The steep climb in national unemployment numbers – from February’s 5.6% to 13% in April – will also have a significant influence in housing sales and values.

“In this context, demand for housing may decrease due to a reduction in immigration and would-be first-time homebuyers not being able to qualify for a mortgage loan,” Teranet said. “At the opposite, supply may be fuelled by homeowners unable to meet mortgage payments and for that reason will look to sell their home. In other words, a lasting high unemployment rate could mean downward pressure on house prices.”

The composite index in April was 5.3% higher than the same time last year. Ottawa-Gatineau (13.2% higher) imparted the most upward movement, along with Montreal (9.5%), Halifax (9.5%), Hamilton (8.9%), and Toronto (8.2%).

With the COVID-19 pandemic continuously savaging global markets, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) said that the pace of recovery will be markedly slow, with pre-recession prices returning only after three years.

“For Canada and for Ontario, I think, the best case we’re looking at … house prices getting back to their pre-recession levels, at the earliest, by the end of 2022,” CMHC Chief Economist Bob Dugan said.  By Ephraim Vecina.


Household debt growth outstripping all other debt types

Over the last few decades, household debt growth accelerated faster than every other debt class, according to real estate information portal Better Dwelling.

Citing data from the Bank of Canada, the analysis said that the trend “makes Canadian households [among] the most vulnerable” globally.

“In 2000, household debt was just 58% of GDP. By the end of 2019 Q4, that number has hit 100% of GDP,” Better Dwelling said. “This is amongst the highest of advanced economies.”

BoC numbers indicated that national household debt hit a peak of $2.28 trillion in March, increasing by 0.44% from February and 4.6% from March 2019. Outstanding mortgages accounted for $1.64 trillion of this sum, rising by 0.49% monthly and 5.3% annually.

The impact on monthly budgets was inevitable: Even before the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, Canada’s insolvency incidence was already at 11,575 filings as of February, which was the highest level since 2010.

The Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy Canada said that this volume was 9% higher on an annual basis. Ontario posted the greatest increase during that month, at 3,837 filings (up 16.8% year over year), with Quebec’s 3,770 filings (up 1.9% annually) coming in at a close second.

“[These figures] underscore how vulnerable Canadian households are to income interruption. Over the next few months we’ll likely see an unfolding of two crises: the global pandemic and the bursting of the Canadian consumer debt bubble,” MNP LTD president Grant Bazian said. “Many households were already limited in their ability to face any kind of financial disruption. Now, all Canadians are feeling the effects on their paycheques, pocketbooks and stock portfolios. Those who were already saddled with a lot of debt are in economic survival mode.”  By Ephraim Vecina.


Expect rapid post-pandemic recovery – BoC’s Poloz

Despite multiple headwinds and the continuous ravages of COVID-19, Canadian market activity and purchasing power will be able to recover quickly after the outbreak eases, according to outgoing Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz.

“We have to be able to manage the risks around those things, so I’m not going to dismiss [the worst scenarios],” Poloz told BNN Bloomberg. “But, me personally, I do think on balance what I’m hearing, the flow that I’m hearing, is a little too dire, a little bit overblown.”

In the greater scheme of things, the coronavirus will not be a fatal roadblock, Poloz said. While the national economy is still on track to decline at least 15% this year, “you should see a very rapid return to production” once the economy restarts in late 2020, he said. “I’m relatively optimistic, what I find, compared with what the talk is.”

These predictions dovetailed with other observers’ forecasts of speedy post-pandemic recovery across the board, pointing at the Canadian financial system’s robust fundamentals.

However, the pace of this recovery will depend on homeowners not selling their assets, according to TD Economics.

“Absolutely key to our forecasts is the assumption that listings mirror sales by dropping substantially in the near term and recovering gradually thereafter,” said TD economist Rishi Sondhi. “This puts a floor on prices and sustains relatively tight supply-demand balances across most markets, allowing for the resumption of positive price growth as provincial economies are re-opened.”  By Ephraim Vecina. 


Why does CMHC’s Evan Siddall think Canada is headed for a ‘deferral cliff’?

In comments delivered to the Standing Committee on Finance on Tuesday, Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation CEO Evan Siddall laid out a potentially bleak scenario for the country’s homeowners. Siddall told parliamentarians that by September, if Canada’s economic recovery fails to generate enough momentum, 20 percent of mortgages could be in arrears.

“A team is at work within CMHC to help manage a growing debt ‘deferral cliff’ that looms in the fall, when some unemployed people will need to start paying their mortgages again,” Siddall said during the Committee’s videoconference. “As much as one fifth of all mortgages could be in arrears if our economy has not recovered sufficiently.”

It was one of many disturbing claims made by Siddall, who also told the Committee that the nominal house price in Canada could fall by as much as 18 percent over the next six to 12 months, with the biggest losses expected in oil-driven economies like Alberta and Saskatchewan and in overheated markets like Toronto. If prices fall by 10 percent, Siddall said first-time buyers could lose as much as $45,000 on a $300,000 home.

But the deferral issue didn’t seem to phase him.

“Canadians do a very good job of paying their mortgages, even when they’re under water, so our loss forecasts are not extreme,” he said in an exchange with Progressive Conservative MP Pierre Poilievre. When asked by Poilievre for CMHC’s potential loss forecast, Siddall estimated that it could be as high as $9 billion.

According to DLC’s Dr. Sherry Cooper, Siddall’s claim that 20 percent of mortgages could be delinquent by September borders on the ridiculous.

“It’s kind of bizarre to me,” she says. “Most economists are finding fault with it.”

An arrears rate of 20 percent would essentially mean that the Bank of Canada’s efforts to ensure the availability of credit and the federal government’s pumping of billions of dollars into the economy to prevent business closures and forced bankruptcies will actually accelerate the rate at which Canadian mortgages are turning sour.

“The Bank of Canada estimates that the delinquency rate could possibly move up from .25 percent to .8 percent. And now we’re talking about 20 percent delinquency rates?” Cooper says. “Give me a break.”

When asked if there was a possibility that Siddall was referring to deferrals when he used the word “arrears”, Cooper was doubtful.

“No, he’s a very smart guy,” she says, despite the unlikelihood of his prediction.

“It’s not going to happen. The highest delinquency – which is what ‘arrears’ is – rates we’ve ever seen in history are nowhere near [the projected 20 percent],” she says.

Centum FairTrust owner Jimmy Hansra agrees with Cooper’s assessment.

“The government has been pretty proactive in terms of providing as many programs as they possibly can to weather the storm,” he says, adding that there’s “no way” Siddall’s arrears projection is accurate.

“Even his comments about CMHC seeing housing prices falling by 18 percent I think are overblown, too,” says Hansra. “Nobody knows what’s happening with house prices.”

Hansra isn’t preparing for the kind of worst-case scenario Siddall laid out. Instead, he says his team is readying themselves for a potential, although still unlikely, stream of borrowers looking for refinancing or equity take-out solutions that will require private money.

“I don’t see it happening,” he says, “But if it does, I think that’s the only way mortgage professionals are going to be able to provide financing for their customers. Because if they’re not going to be able to make their mortgage payments and they have equity sitting in their home, either people are going to look to use home equity lines of credit to make those payments or they’ll look for some sort of second or third mortgage financing.”

Hansra stresses that projections like Siddall’s, particularly when they’re made at a time with no parallel in human history, need to be taken with a few million grains of salt.

“It’s all a guess,” he says.

If CMHC did envision a 20 percent arrears rate by fall, a fair question to ask, says RateSpy founder Robert McLister, is why they are not acting now to mitigate what would be an utter catastrophe for the Canadian economy.

“I think that if the government really thought there was going to be 20 percent arrears, they would take action,” McLister says. “You can’t have one in five homeowners not paying their mortgage, with a large percentage of those leading to liquidation. You know what that would do to home prices. You know what that would do to the economy. It’s not going to happen.” By Clayton Jarvis


Stress test 2.0? What a 10% minimum down payment requirement would mean for Canadian buyers

Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation CEO Evan Siddall’s recent address to the Standing Committee on Finance contained a plethora of negative projections, from housing prices falling by 18 percent to one-fifth of all Canadian mortgages being in arrears by September. But it was his comments around the advantages of making 10 percent down payments and CMHC’s attempts to limit demand that have the industry wondering if an increase in the minimum down payment requirement may be in the cards.

As Siddall made his case for the approaching “deferral cliff”, a scenario where unemployed homeowners who have deferred their mortgage payments are asked to start making them again despite not returning to work, he shared with parliamentarians two key pieces of data that associate five percent down payments with increased risk.

The first, a chart that tracks the percentage of loans in deferral by their loan-to-value ratios, showed that 69 percent of the mortgages currently in deferral fall into the 90-95 percent LTV category. The implication seems to be that if there were fewer borrowers putting down five percent, the deferral cliff Siddall described might be less towering.

Siddall singled out first-timers again when he discussed the potential losses they could face if housing prices fall by 10 percent.

“Unless we act, a first-time homebuyer purchasing a $300,000 home with a 5 per cent down payment stands to lose over $45,000 on their $15,000 investment if prices fall by 10 per cent,” Siddall’s statement read. “In comparison, a 10 per cent down payment offers more of a cushion against possible losses.”

Because CMHC will be on the hook for any insurance claims triggered by failing mortgages, Siddall also said the Corporation is evaluating its underwriting policies.

“So if housing affordability is our aim, as surely it must be, then there must be a limit to the demand we help to create, especially when supply isn’t keeping up,” he said.

That’s the same logic that gave Canada its mortgage stress test. Many brokers are worried that a 10 percent minimum down payment would have a similarly chilling effect on business

Few in the industry seem to think the change is imminent. Either way, the discussion around down payment levels has shone a harsh light on the anxiety-ridden situation facing first-time buyers.  By Ephraim Vecina.


Re/Max challenges CMHC home price projections

Housing industry players are opposing Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s dire forecast of an 18% decline in home prices over the next 12 months, claiming that demand remains elevated and inventories continue to hover near record lows.

“Assuming that demand continues its current course, Canadian real estate prices will likely remain relatively stable or experience a single-digit price correction at worst,” RE/MAX said, adding that its agents are still reporting multiple offers on a regular basis.

“CMHC doesn’t seem to understand the sheer number of sellers that would have to accept this kind of price reduction, in order for average housing prices to plummet to this degree in such a short time span,” said Christopher Alexander, executive vice president and regional director with RE/MAX of Ontario Atlantic Canada. “Sellers simply won’t accept that kind of discount on their listings. A statement of this nature is panic-inducing and irresponsible.”

Government agencies should instead focus on how the housing markets – and the Canadian financial system as a whole – could weather the unprecedented impact of the coronavirus, according to the C.D. Howe Institute.

“Ottawa and the provinces need to recommit to fiscal and monetary anchors in light of the unprecedented stimulus response provided by all levels of government and the Bank of Canada throughout the COVID-19 crisis,” C.D. Howe said. “Canada is emerging from the first wave of the pandemic with very high public and private debt loads and is increasingly dependent on domestic and foreign investors to finance them. With the loss of Canada’s fiscal anchor, maintaining investor confidence so that public and private debt can be carried at a reasonable cost is essential.”  By Ephraim Vecina. 


Mortgage Interest Rates

Fixed mortgage rates have been dropping steadily in the past two weeks with fixed rates right back at historically low levels.   Variable rates discounts deepened only slightly.   View rates Here – and be sure to contact us for a quote to help you find the lowest rate for your specific needs and product requirements.

The Bank of Canada’s target overnight rate is 0.25%.  Prime lending rate is 2.45%.  What is Prime lending rate?  The prime rate is the interest rate that commercial banks charge their most creditworthy corporate customers.  The Bank of Canada overnight lending rate serves as the basis for the prime rate, and prime serves as the starting point for most other interest rates.  Bank of Canada Benchmark Qualifying rate for mortgage approval is 4.94%. 


Mortgage Update - Mortgage Broker London

Your Mortgage

If you have concerns about your mortgage and the rapidly changing market, please contact us to discuss your needs, concerns and options in detail to protect your best interest.

Ensure that your current mortgage is performing optimally, or if you are shopping for a mortgage, only finalize your decision when you are confident you have all the options and the best deals with lowest rates for your needs.

Here at iMortgageBroker, we love looking after our clients’ needs to ensure you get all the options and the best deals and best results.  We do this by shopping your mortgage to all the lenders out there that includes banks, trust companies, credit unions, mortgage corporations & insurance companies.  We do this with a smile, and with service excellence

Reach out to us – let us do all the hard work in getting you the best results and peace of mind!

We encourage you to follow guidelines from our public health authorities:

Middlesex Health Unit


Southwestern Public Health


Ontario Ministry of Health


Public Health Canada


Factual Statistics Coronavirus COVID-19 Globally:




11 May



Posted by: Adriaan Driessen

Industry & Market Highlights 

How you are doing after 7 weeks or social distancing and quarantine restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic health crisis and the economic crisis?  We will continue to stay positive and take this one day at a time though we are all experiencing some devastating lows.  

There are signs of change and more positive news are brining hope that tides have turned and that we are taking a turn to head back to normal, but time will tell.  The return to new normal might look different than what we expect.  The spring market in real estate has returned and in our minds the sense of a new season have helped and we all hope the current new reality will become distance history sooner than later.

Thank you to our essential workers for their courage and compassion during fearful and uncertain times.  

We are always here to help you with good advice, guidance, counsel, direction or the right connections for your real estate mortgage financing related questions or needs.  Reach out to us!

Reminder to always research and consider facts and to not allow news media or social media to manipulate or disable our critical thinking with fear.

Factual Global Statistics Including COVID-19:


Ontario announces new list of businesses that can reopen

TORONTO — Ontario has announced a list of more businesses than can open, with strict guidelines in place, as the province moves with “cautious optimism” to restart the economy.

Premier Doug Ford said Wednesday garden centres and nurseries will be allowed to reopen as of Friday at 12:01 a.m. On Saturday, hardware stores and safety supply stores will also be allowed to reopen.

On May 11, retail stores with a street entrance will be allowed to reopen for curbside pickup.

We’ve been preparing to get more and more of our economy working again safely and cautiously because when it comes to reopening our economy I’d rather be safe than sorry,” Ford said Wednesday.

MORE: Full list of businesses that can reopen in Ontario

“I want to be clear, all public health measures remain in place and will be strictly enforced. We can’t take the progress we have made for granted.”

“We will move with cautious optimism.”

A small list of other non-essential businesses in the province were allowed to reopen on Monday, when some seasonal businesses and construction projects were given the green light to continue operating.

Businesses that can now open their doors to customers will have to follow the same guidelines as grocery stores and pharmacies currently do, including promoting physical distancing and frequent hand-washing, sanitizing surfaces, installing physical barriers, staggering shifts, and offering contactless payment.

The province is not yet at the point of entering the first stage of its reopening framework, which — in addition to allowing workplaces that can modify operations to reopen — would see the opening of parks, allowing for more people at certain events such as funerals, and having hospitals resume some non-urgent surgeries.

Before Ontario can reopen, the chief medical officer of health is looking for a consistent, two-to-four week decrease in the number of new cases.

Last week, provincial government released a list of sector-specific guidelines industries must follow in order to reopen. 

The government said the new safety guidelines provide direction to various industries including retail, health care, manufacturing, tourism, restaurant and food service, offices, construction sites, and transit and transportation services.

The premier also unveiled a three-phase plan to reopen following weeks of shutdown. The plan, dubbed “A Framework for Reopening our Province,” states the parameters of each “gradual stage.”

Ontario also extended its emergency orders today, which include the continued closure of non-essential businesses, as the province reported 412 new cases of COVID-19 and 68 more deaths.

With files from The Canadian Press.  By Sean Davidson

Home Sales Drop in April, While Average Sales Price Remains Steady

Local home sales decreased more than 50% in April, as the COVID-19 pandemic and the social distancing rules incurred by it slowed the momentum on what was shaping up to be another record year for LSTAR REALTORS®.

Last month, there were 469 home sales in the entire jurisdiction of the London and St. Thomas Association of REALTORS®, down 55.4% from April 2019 and 54.8% less than in April 2010. The number of LSTAR’s listings dropped to 738 in April, which represents a 50.3% decrease from a year ago and 56.8% from ten years ago.

“As anticipated, the volume of sales was one of the lowest for April since the Association started tracking data, back in 1978,” said 2020 LSTAR President Blair Campbell. “However, when analyzing these figures, one has to take into account a few facts: at the beginning of April, the Government of Ontario prohibited open houses, many Sellers decided to postpone putting their properties on the market and many REALTORS® stopped trading in order to protect their families and their clients. Now, with the provincial Government planning to re-open the economy, we are expecting that, once that happens, the local markets will start to gradually recover,” he added.

Compared to a year ago, the overall average home price saw an increase of 0.4%, rising to $423,143 in April. This average sales price includes all housing types – from single detached homes to high rise apartment condominiums. In the five major areas of LSTAR’s region, average home sales price performed differently. The following table illustrates last month’s average home prices by area and how they compare to the values recorded at the end of April 2019.

“Looking at London’s three main geographic areas, London South saw the highest number of home sales last month, while London North saw the biggest price gain compared to April 2019,” Campbell said.

The average home price in London East was $353,009, up 3.7% from the same time last year, while in London North increased 4.6% over the same period to $530,499. In London South, which also includes data from the west of the City, the average home price was $428,479, down 1.6% over April 2019. St. Thomas saw an average price of $367,566, an increase of 3.1% from last April.

According to a report by the Canadian Real Estate Association, last month, in London, the median number of days that a home was on the market was 14 – up from 9 days in April 2019. In Elgin County, the median number of days spent by a home on the market was 18 – up from 16.5; in Middlesex County it was 16 – up from 15.5; in St. Thomas it was 14 days – up from 11; and in Strathroy was 8, down from 12 as compared to a year ago.

The following chart is based on data taken from the CREA National Price Map for March 2020 (the latest CREA statistics available). It provides a snapshot of how home prices in London and St. Thomas compare to some other major Ontario and Canadian centres.

By LSTAR London St.Thomas Association of Realtors.

There’s no such thing as a balanced market

You can’t dance at two weddings at the same time.

In terms of real estate, I would say this saying could refer to a balanced market. Is there even such a thing as a long-term balanced market? I would suggest that the short answer is no. It is either a seller’s market or a buyer’s market.

We are well accustomed to these terms, which relate to months of inventory on MLS, sales-to-new-listing ratios or absorption rates. These are key figures to look at, as they are indicative of whether we are in an over-supply or under-supply situation. Supply is everything. Ignore days on market or sales-to-list price ratios, as these figures can be easily manipulated.

According to CREA, in March 2020, we had 4.3 months of inventory nationwide, with higher inventory in the Prairies and Newfoundland/Labrador. The sales-to-new listings ratio was 64 per cent. Both figures would indicate very light seller’s market conditions.

You may think that 4.3 months of inventory is substantial (the long-term national average is 5.2 months, according to CREA). However, keep in mind that this inventory includes overpriced listings, unsaleable listings (usually because they are overpriced) and houses that are located on super-busy streets, in substandard areas and/or in poor physical condition (again, usually this is not reflected in the price). Irrespective of market conditions, I would suggest to you that, at a minimum, at least one-third of inventory falls into these categories. Yes… at least one-third of sellers are unmotivated (and this figure is probably higher). But this situation has existed for an eternity and won’t go away.

A balanced market lies somewhere in-between. The glass is half full or half empty. Or is it? It is sort of like purgatory. Neither heaven nor hell.

I think that a balanced market is temporary. The sand keeps shifting, so sellers and buyers do not know how to react. During this temporary period, sellers usually lean towards the “glass is half full” mindset, sure that market conditions are bound to improve. Buyers tend to lean towards the “glass is half empty”, thinking that the sky is falling. This is why, during balanced market conditions, it is so difficult to bring deals together. There is a chasm between the mindsets of both parties. We can only start doing more business when inventory either decreases or increases, and the gap between seller and buyer mindsets closes.

We are set to enter buyer’s market conditions across our fair nation. This means that we will see inventory exceed five months on average and the sales-to-new-listings ratio fall to below 40 per cent. Assuming inventories don’t swell, it certainly will be easier to bring buyers and sellers together than during temporary balanced times. Mark my words, inventory will grow as we enter into an economic recession.

Purchasers will be worth gold in a buyer’s market. So will motivated sellers. There is an old adage in real estate that I learned from the wonderful, late real estate mentor Howard Brinton: “In life you want to be the first-born child, the second spouse and the third Realtor.” Maybe it’s time to say good-bye to unmotivated clients and refocus on good business. Gone are the days where the seller says, “We are in no rush to sell” or “We are not going to give it away.” If we each had a loonie for every time that we heard that in our careers, we would be sitting together on a beach in the Caymans.

When we represent buyers in the new market reality, we need to keep a list of “the top 10 buys in today’s market.” Who doesn’t want a great buy? When we represent sellers, we need to show them where their home falls in relation to the competition, and price ahead of the market. More than ever, our listings need to be best in class, beautifully presented and the best priced in their segments.

And, we’ll have to be more creative in putting deals together. Buyers will be fussier than ever on inspections. Old roof shingles may be a problem. Sellers may have to re-roof or replace their furnace as a contingency in an offer. Vendor-take-back-mortgages may come back in vogue for hard-to-finance buyers.

In my last article in REM, I wrote about getting back to basics in our business. Part of this new reality is to take a hard look at our buyer and seller clients and choose to work with those who are most motivated. The glass is half full.  By Paul Maranger.

Residential Market Commentary – The new boss. Same as the old boss?

The Bank of Canada has a new Governor.  And it could be said that everything old is new again.

Current Governor Stephen Poloz will step down, as scheduled, at the start of next month.  He will be replaced by Tiff Macklem, an old hand at the central bank.

Macklem is currently the dean of the Rotman School of Business at the University of Toronto, but he has a long history at the Bank of Canada and was the senior deputy governor under Mark Carney.  He was also a deputy to finance minister Jim Flaherty and helped guide Canada through the Global Financial Collapse and the Great Recession.

Macklem’s experience with that crisis appears to have been a key factor in his appointment, as Canada now faces the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

Macklem and the Bank of Canada are in a tight spot.  They have run out of room to reduce interest rates and they are spending billions of dollars a week buying government bonds.  Macklem has already expressed his reluctance to see interest rates go negative, calling that move “a new source of disruption”, in an already disrupted financial system.

Given Macklem’s record we can look forward to a more staid, Carney-like, Governor.  (Stephen Poloz has been positively lively compared to many of his predecessors.)  As during the last crisis, the Bank could work to calm markets and investors with more forward guidance.  And, it is unlikely Macklem will tinker with the Bank’s 2% target for inflation, which he helped develop back in 1991.  By First National Financial. 

COVID-19 to push the housing sector on a downward slope – Moody’s

Market growth and activity in the Canadian housing sector will trend downward this year amid the sustained economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak, according to a recent study by Moody’s Analytics.

In its “Canada Housing Market Outlook: Tough Times Ahead” report released last month, Moody’s said that any pre-pandemic forecasts will have to be essentially scrapped.

“Shelter-in-place orders and social distancing have brought house hunting to a virtual halt while layoffs, the collapse in oil prices, and the plunge in equity prices have kept prospective buyers at bay,” Moody’s said. “The COVID-19 pandemic comes at a terrible time for Canada’s economy. Trade and investment were already struggling to make gains as the U.S.-China trade war and Brexit weighed on global demand. The pandemic soured this already-weak outlook almost overnight.”

With a clear majority of Canadians preparing themselves for the economy to worsen over the next few months, weaker consumer confidence and purchasing power will affect some regions more than others.

“The worst effects will be felt in regions that rely disproportionately on the leisure/hospitality, trade and energy industries,” Moody’s said, pointing at British Columbia and the Prairie provinces, in particular.

The report also said that these events will most likely aggravate other worrying trends.

On the national level, “the mortgage debt service ratio tracked by Statistics Canada increased from 6.4% of disposable income in mid-2016 to 6.8% in late 2019,” Moody’s said. “Consumer debt performance has also shown some signs of strain. In particular, bankruptcy filings and insolvency proposals have risen.”  By Ephraim Vecina

Home construction to start bouncing back in July: Altus

While home construction in Canada will be significantly disrupted through the spring by the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the country’s largest real estate consultancies sees builder activity beginning to ramp back up by the summer as restrictions introduced to combat the virus are loosened.

Speaking as part of a newly released web series, Altus Group Vice President and Chief Economist Peter Norman said home construction across the country would experience “considerable interruption” between April and June due to the strict social distancing and business shutdown measures in effect.

“Thereafter starts will begin to pick up again, but still be impacted by short-term interruptions to the sales cycle, and from supply chain turbulence at least through the third quarter. By the fourth quarter, starts are expected to have returned to normal and may even exceed recent highs as builders play catch up,” said Norman.

Altus Group is currently forecasting 158,000 housing starts in Canada for 2020, a massive decline from the 208,700 starts recorded across the country last year. Prior to the pandemic, the firm had been projecting 209,000 starts for the year and 214,000 starts for 2021.

Housing market observers will then be pleased to hear that Norman believes the construction bounce back through 2021 will be substantial, with Altus pencilling in over 210,000 starts for the year.

In mid-March, before the scale of the pandemic’s impact had fully emerged, Altus Group Executive Vice President Patricia Arsenault released a collection of scenarios that sought to outline the potential severity of the future disruptive effects on home construction.

Of the three scenarios explored — a minimal, moderate and prolonged disruption — Altus Group’s current view on the pandemic’s impact on Canadian home construction in 2020 aligns closely with Arsenault’s ‘prolonged disruption’ scenario, the bleakest of the three.

However, Norman’s forecast that housing starts will bounce back in 2021 is more upbeat and closer to the firm’s original pre-pandemic prediction for the year.  By Sean MacKay.

Mortgage Update - Mortgage Broker London

Mortgage Update – Mortgage Broker London

Economic Highlights

Pandemic Batters Canadian Jobs Market

A Recession Like No Other

The Canadian economy has been put in a medically induced coma. Never before in modern history have we seen a forced shutdown in the global economy so, not surprisingly, the incoming data for April is terrible. There is a good chance, however, that April will mark the bottom in economic activity as regions begin to ease restrictions.

The economy will revive, but the psychological shock is perhaps the most unnerving. Rest assured, however that, as severe as this is, there are real opportunities here along with the challenges. There are economic winners, not just losers. More on that later.

Employment in Canada collapsed in April, with 2 million jobs lost, taking the unemployment rate to 13.0%, just a tick below the prior postwar record of 13.2% in 1982 (see chart below). The record decline is on the heels of the 1 million job loss in March, bringing the cumulative two-month total to 15.7% of the pre-virus workforce.

Economists had been expecting double the job destruction–a 4 million position decline in April–in reaction to the reports that over 7 million Canadians had applied for CERB. Today’s news reflected labour market conditions during the week of April 12 to April 18. The applications for CERB are more recent, so we may well see these additional losses reflected in the May report. 

The 13% unemployment rate underestimates the actual level of joblessness. In April, the unemployment rate would have been 17.8% if the labour force participation rate had not fallen. Compared to a year ago, there were 1.5 million more workers on permanent layoff not looking for work in April – and so not counted as unemployed.

Also, the number of people who were employed but worked less than half of their usual hours for reasons related to COVID-19 increased by 2.5 million from February to April. As of the week of April 12, the cumulative effect of the COVID-19 economic shutdown—the number of Canadians who were either not employed or working substantially reduced hours—was 5.5 million, or more than one-quarter of February’s employment level.

In April, both full-time (-1,472,000; -9.7%) and part-time (-522,000; -17.1%) employment fell. Cumulative losses since February totalled 1,946,000 (-12.5%) in full-time work and 1,059,000 (-29.6%) in part-time employment.

Decline In Employment is Unprecedented

The magnitude of the decline in employment since February (-15.7%) far exceeds declines observed in previous labour market downturns. For example, the deep 1981-1982 recession resulted in a total employment decline of 612,000 (-5.4%) over approximately 17 months.

More of the drop in employment now is the result of temporary layoffs. In April, almost all (97%) of the newly-unemployed were on temporary layoff, whereas in previous recessions, most of the dismissals were considered permanent.

In April, more than one-third (36.7%) of the potential labour force did not work or worked less than half of their usual hours, illustrating the continuing impact of the COVID-19 economic shutdown on the labour market. But job losses were also still weighted, on balance, more heavily in lower-wage jobs. Average wage growth for those remaining in employment spiked sharply higher as a result to 11% above year-ago levels.


All provinces have been hard-hit

Employment declined in all provinces for the second month in a row. Compared with February, employment dropped by more than 10% in all regions, led by Quebec (-18.7% or -821,000).  Quebec leads the country in the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths.

The unemployment rate rose markedly in all provinces in April. In Quebec, the rate rose to 17.0%, the highest level since comparable data became available in 1976, and the highest among all provinces (see table below). The number of unemployed people increased at a faster pace in Quebec (+101.0% or +367,000) than in other regions.

Employment dropped sharply from February to April in each of Canada’s three largest census metropolitan areas (CMAs). As a proportion of February employment, Montréal recorded the largest decline (-18.0%; -404,000), followed by Vancouver (-17.4%; -256,000) and Toronto (-15.2%; -539,000).

In Montréal, the unemployment rate was 18.2% in April, an increase of 13.4 percentage points since February. In comparison, the unemployment rate in Montréal peaked at 10.2% during the 2008/2009 recession. In Toronto, the unemployment rate was 11.1% in April (up 5.6 percentage points since February), and in Vancouver, it was 10.8% (up 6.2 percentage points).

Employment Losses By Sector

In March, almost all employment losses were in the services-producing sector. In April, by contrast, employment losses were proportionally larger in goods (-15.8%; -621,000) than in services (-9.6%; -1.4 million). Losses in the goods-producing sector were led by construction (-314,000; -21.1%) and manufacturing (-267,000; -15.7%).

Within the services sector, employment losses continued in several industries, led by wholesale and retail trade (-375,000; -14.0%) and accommodation and food services (-321,000; -34.3%).

Industries that continued to be relatively less affected by the COVID-19 economic shutdown included utilities; public administration; and finance, insurance and real estate.

In both the services-producing and the goods-producing sectors, the employment decreases observed in the two months since February were proportionally larger than the losses observed during each of the three significant labour market downturns since 1980.

As economic activity resumes industry by industry following the COVID-19 economic shutdown, the time required for recovery will be a critical question.

After the previous downturns, employment in services recovered relatively quickly, returning to pre-downturn levels in an average of four months. On the other hand, it took an average of more than six years for goods-producing employment to return to pre-recession levels following the 1981-1982 and 1990-1992 recessions. After the 2008-2009 global financial crisis, it took 10 years for employment in the goods-producing sector to return to pre-crisis levels.

Green Shoots

As bad as things are, there is some evidence that the economy is approaching a bottom. Business shutdowns are easing in most provinces, and while it will be some time before we see a complete reopening, early signs of improvement are evident. Business sentiment appears to have improved somewhat towards the end of April, as evidenced by data from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. The Royal Bank economists report that credit card spending looked less weak at the end of April. Housing starts for April held up better than expected. And, most importantly, the spread of Coronavirus has eased, and regions are starting to relax some of the rules to flatten the curve

Concerning the housing market, before the pandemic, we were going into the spring season with the prospect of record sales activity in much of the country. Aside from oil country–Alberta and Saskatchewan–all indications were for a red-hot housing market. So the underlying fundamentals for housing remain positive as the economy recovers. How long that will take depends on the course of the virus and whether we see a second wave in late fall. 

Interest rates have plummeted. Thanks to the 150 basis point decline in the prime rate, variable rate mortgage rates have fallen for the first time since late 2018. Once the Bank of Canada was able to establish enough liquidity in financial markets, even fixed-rate mortgage rates have fallen. 

The posted mortgage rate appears stuck at 5.04%, far above contract rates; but with any luck at all, this qualifying rate for mortgage stress tests will ease in the coming months. The Bank of Canada will remain extremely accommodating. In my view, interest rates will not rise until 2022.

Opportunities-There Will Be Winners

Even now, some businesses are enjoying a surge in revenues and profitability. Just to put a more positive note on this period of rapid change, I jotted down a list of companies that are thriving. Top of the list is Shopify, a Canadian company that helps businesses provide online shopping services. Shopify is now the most highly valued company in Canada, as measured by its stock market valuation, surpassing the Royal Bank. 

Many who never relied on online shopping have become converts during the lock-down. Amazon is another business that is benefiting, but Amazon needs more competition, and many Canadians would welcome some homegrown online rivals.

Loblaws, with its groceries and drug stores, is booming. So are the cleaning products companies like Clorox and paper products company Kimberly Clark. Staying at home has boosted sales at Wayfair, the online furniture and home products site. Peloton and suppliers of dumbbells and other fitness equipment are seeing increased revenues as people look for in-home alternatives to the locked-down gyms and health clubs. 

Demand for cloud services has boosted revenues at Microsoft and Dropbox. Home entertainment is booming, think Netflix and YouTube. Zoom and Cisco (Webex) are also big winners. Qualcomm stands to gain from a more rapid move to 5G. And Accenture and Booz Allen, among other business and government consultants, are busy helping companies reinvent their operations in a post-pandemic world.

In times of enormous uncertainty and volatility, people need expert advice and hand-holding, particularly concerning their finances. That’s where mortgage professionals come in along with financial planners, realtors, accountants and tax lawyers.   By Dr. Sherry Cooper. Chief Economist, Dominion Lending Centres.

Housing will bear the full impact of COVID-19 by next year – CIBC

The impact of the coronavirus outbreak on the value of Canadian housing will fully manifest by next year, according to economists with the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC).

“The expected volatility in overall economic activity in the coming quarters will not skip the resale market,” said CIBC economists Benjamin Tal and Katherine Judge in a report last week. “By 2021, as the economics of housing returns to fundamentals, we expect an array of factors to result in a weaker market with some downward pressure on prices.”

Among the most influential of these factors is the already-weakening employment sector, latest Statistics Canada figures indicated.

The national market suffered a 5.3% decline from February to March, representing more than 1 million lost jobs. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate rose by a record high 2.2% monthly, ending up at 7.8%.

Tal and Judge said that this trend will almost certainly lead to much slower demand. Rapidly-depleting budgets might also force some homeowners to sell in a less-than-ideal market environment, The Financial Post reported.

“Overall, as the fog clears, we expect to see average prices 5%-10% lower relative to 2019 levels, with high-cost units in the high-rise segment of the market seeing the most notable price declines,” the economists said. “The cumulative damage suggests that when we recover, potentially at one point in 2021, we will be recovering into recessionary conditions.” By Ephraim Vecina

Reduced selling will propel post-COVID-19 recovery – TD Economics

A vital component of the Canadian housing sector’s post-coronavirus recovery phase is homeowners refraining from selling their assets, according to TD Economics.

“Absolutely key to our forecasts is the assumption that listings mirror sales by dropping substantially in the near term and recovering gradually thereafter,” said TD economist Rishi Sondhi. “This puts a floor on prices and sustains relatively tight supply-demand balances across most markets, allowing for the resumption of positive price growth as provincial economies are re-opened.”

Such estimates have to be tempered by the reality of dwindling budgets forcing some homeowners to sell in a suboptimal market environment, however.

“Indeed, we anticipate the gap between listings and sales to grow in coming months, as financial stresses force some homeowners to list their properties,” Sondhi said.

Sales fell by 14.3% month-over-month, while new listings declined by 12.5% during the same period, according to March data from the Canadian Real Estate Association.

The TeranetNational Bank of Canada House Price Index predicted that this trend would only intensify, especially in traditional hotspots like Toronto and Vancouver, over the next few months.

“At the national level, resale home prices were still gaining momentum in March. But this is based on home sales reported in land registries,” Teranet said. “The most important real estate boards all mentioned a clear break of activity during the second half of March due to measures to contain propagation of COVID-19.”

On the other hand, homeowners might find a measure of relief in “a jobs market that will likely improve starting next month,” Sondhi said. “Next year should see much stronger activity, as markets benefit from significant pent-up demand and historically low interest rates.”  By Ephraim Vecina

COVID-19’s fiscal impact likely far worse than 2008-09 – economist

The effects of the coronavirus pandemic on Canadian finances are likely to be more pronounced than those seen during the 2008-09 recession, according to economist David Rosenberg.

“I think it is a global depression,” Rosenberg said in an interview with BNN Bloomberg. “It depends on what you want to define as a recession or depression. A recession is a haircut to GDP and within a year, who’s going to be talking about a recession anymore? Nobody. But with a depression, you’re still going to be talking about it for the next five, 10 years.”

As of Wednesday, more than 3 million cases of COVID-19 have been reported in over 185 nations and territories. Economies have stagnated as governments around the world implemented strict measures, including social distancing and work stoppages, to halt the spread of the contagion.

Mounting debt and unemployment are exacerbating the threats to Canada’s economy and financial system, Rosenberg said.

“If we call ‘08 and ‘09 the ‘Great Recession,’ this is 10 times worse at any level. How is this just a plain little recession?” Rosenberg said. “Depression is something that happens every century but the definition is that this will cause a secular shift in attitudes in terms of how we live, how we work and how we travel, and the approach toward debt and spending. This is going to be a long-lasting impact here.”

Laura Dottori-Attanasio, head of domestic banking at Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, recently mirrored these sentiments, saying that the crisis might trigger a vicious downward spiral in the national market.

“I think it’s been really tough on people, not just financially but mentally – there’s just so much stress in the system,” Dottori-Attanasio said. “That stress will continue to build until we get a little more clarity about what happens next and when it happens. We do have a highly indebted Canadian consumer that we’ve been talking about for quite some time, and just under half of Canadians live paycheque to paycheque.”  By Ephraim Vecina

Mortgage Update - Mortgage Broker London

Mortgage Update – Mortgage Broker London

Mortgage Interest Rates

Fixed mortgage rate are slowing trending downward again.  Variable rates remain unchanged.   View rates Here – and be sure to contact us for a quote to help you find the lowest rate for your specific needs and product requirements.

The Bank of Canada’s target overnight rate is 0.25%.  Prime lending rate is 2.45%.  What is Prime lending rate?  The prime rate is the interest rate that commercial banks charge their most creditworthy corporate customers. The Bank of Canada overnight lending rate serves as the basis for the prime rate, and prime serves as the starting point for most other interest rates.  Bank of Canada Benchmark Qualifying rate for mortgage approval is 5.04%. 

Your Mortgage

If you have concerns about your mortgage and the rapidly changing market, please contact us to discuss your needs, concerns and options in detail to protect your best interest

Ensure that your current mortgage is performing optimally, or if you are shopping for a mortgage, only finalize your decision when you are confident you have all the options and the best deals with lowest rates for your needs.

Here at iMortgageBroker, we love looking after our clients’ needs to ensure you get all the options and the best deals and best results.  We do this by shopping your mortgage to all the lenders out there that includes banks, trust companies, credit unions, mortgage corporations & insurance companies.  We do this with a smile, and with service excellence!

Reach out to us – let us do all the hard work in getting you the best results and peace of mind!


Adriaan Driessen
Mortgage Broker 
Dominion Lending Forest City Funding 10671
Cell:     519.777.9374
Fax:      519.518.1081
500 South Street, Suite 2
London, ON, N6B 1C3
Lori Richards Kovac
Mortgage Agent
Dominion Lending Forest City Funding 10671
iMortgageBroker Inc.
Cell:     519.852.7116
Fax:      519.518.1081
500 South Street, Suite 2
London, ON, N6B 1C3
Adriaan Driessen
Sales Representative & Senior Partner
PC275 Realty Brokerage
Cell:     519.777.9374
Fax:      519.518.1081
500 South Street, Suite 2
London, ON, N6B 1C3