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Big 5 Bank Mortgage Rates

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Comparing bank mortgage rates

Content last updated: November 18, 2020

Getting a mortgage is a major financial commitment and can make big changes to your lifestyle. So, taking the time to choose the right mortgage is really important. For most Canadians, the Big 5 Banks are what they will think of first when they consider taking the mortgage plunge - but the big banks are not your only choice.

Below are some essential details about getting a mortgage from one of the Big 5 Banks, or from any other kind of lender.

Why do banks offer different mortgage rates?

Not all banks offer the same mortgage rates. In fact, some banks can offer very different rates for what is otherwise the same product. For example, the advertised rate for a 5-year fixed-term mortgage could be 0.5% higher from TD Bank than from BMO (or vice versa).

Why is this the case? Well, it’s because each bank has different lending criteria, and is comfortable with different amounts of risk. Other factors like desired market share, competition, and marketing policy will also change a bank’s pricing strategy. This is why you need to shop around and compare rates from multiple banks whenever you get a new mortgage, renew your mortgage, or refinance.

Which bank has the lowest mortgage rate?

While lenders certainly compete on their mortgage products, particular banks don’t tend to have higher or lower ranks as a rule. In Canada, rates are more likely to vary from person to person, rather than bank to bank. To get the best mortgage rate, as well as the mortgage with the right features for you, it’s important to compare mortgages from multiple providers.

How do I get a mortgage with one of the big banks?

There are two ways to apply for a mortgage with one of the big banks. You can either go directly to a particular bank, or you can apply through a mortgage broker. Using a mortgage broker gives you the added benefit of being able to compare mortgage rates and products between different lenders, as well as the chance to speak to an independent mortgage expert.

Can you negotiate a mortgage rate?

Yes, you can negotiate a mortgage rate. The rate you’re offered is not always the best rate you can get, especially in the case of a mortgage renewal offer from your current lender. If you’re uncomfortable with negotiating your own mortgage rate, it’s a good idea to speak to a mortgage broker, who can negotiate on your behalf.

Posted rates vs. best rates

When comparing bank mortgage rates, it’s important to know that these rates represent the banks' posted mortgage rates. The posted rate is simply the rate that the bank is advertising in public. However, banks are often able to offer even lower rates, in order to secure a borrower's business. You may be able to access these discounted rates through negotiation, or by reaching out to a representative mortgage broker. Some banks offer rates several percentage points below what is posted, so it's worth taking the time to see if you can get a better offer.

Bank rates vs. broker rates

As you may have noticed, bank mortgage rates are almost always higher than those of mortgage brokers. That is because mortgage brokers have access to rates from multiple banks and credit unions, as well as insurance and trust companies. That means they can essentially "shop around" for you. Brokers also receive discounts from lenders based on the high volume of their business, which they can pass along to you.

As a result, it’s unlikely that a bank will post a lower rate than a mortgage broker. However, if you present the lowest market rate to your bank as part of the negotiation process, they may offer to match it. That said, we don’t recommend pitting the banks and brokers against each other to compete for your business. What we do recommend is comparing broker mortgage rates and bank mortgage rates alongside each other, and deciding which offer is best for you.

Comparing mortgage rates with Ratehub.ca

Whether you're considering using a bank or broker, a variable or fixed mortgage rate, or a one to a ten-year term, we can help. Our tools find the best mortgage rates for every category and type of lender, personalized to you. Ratehub.ca is an independent source, so we’re able to provide unbiased guidance and education on getting the best mortgage to suit your needs.

Bank Mortgage Rates