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Why should I compare mortgage rates in Canada?
How much can I save by comparing mortgage rates in Canada?
How often are Ratehub.ca mortgage rates updated?
What are prepayment options?
What is a mortgage rate hold?
Should I work with a bank or a mortgage broker?
Let us help you determine which rate best suits your individual needs by answering a few short questions about your home and financial history.
Jamie David, Business Director Mortgages
We compare the most competitive brokers, lenders and banks in Canada to bring you today's lowest interest rates, free of charge. Canada’s current mortgage rates at the top of this page are updated every few minutes, so are the best rates currently on offer. Click here to better understand what rate you could be eligible for in a few simple steps - again, free of charge.
Factors that can affect your personal interest rate
It’s important to understand that the best mortgage rates in Canada are not necessarily the rates that you, personally, are able to qualify for. There are a number of factors that will affect your personal mortgage rate. Below are some of the most significant ones.
Your down payment: If your down payment is less than 20% of the purchase price (and sometimes even if it’s higher than that) you’ll need to pay for mortgage default insurance (CMHC insurance). While this will cost you more overall, it will result in a lower mortgage rate, as your mortgage is less risky for your lender.
Your credit score: If you have bad credit, you may only be able to borrow from a B lender, instead of a big bank or credit union. B lenders are happy to work with people with a poor credit history, but they will charge higher mortgage rates.
What the home will be used for: Your mortgage rate will probably be higher if the home will be rented out, rather than lived in as your primary residence.
Your amortization period: Insurable mortgages in Canada have a maximum amortization period of 25 years. If you take out a type of mortgage that allows a longer amortization period, it will probably have higher interest rates.
The type of mortgage: If your mortgage is for a refinance, rather than a new purchase or renewal, you’ll probably be offered a higher rate.
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Historical Canada mortgage rates
Looking at historical mortgage rates is a good way to understand which types of mortgage attract higher rates. They also make it easier to understand whether we’re currently in a low or higher rate environment, relatively speaking.
Here are some of Canada’s mortgage rates for different types of mortgage over the past five years.
Source: Ratehub Historical Rate Chart
Should I get an open or closed mortgage?
It depends. Closed mortgages are more popular as they have lower rates, but open mortgages have extra flexibility that you might need. Here’s more information on the differences between open and closed mortgages.
Closed mortgages have lower rates, compared to open mortgages. Closed mortgages can come in fixed and variable form, but place restrictions on the amount of principal you can pay down each year. If you pay off the entire principal in a closed mortgage before the set term, you will face a prepayment penalty, which is normally a 3-month interest charge.
Open mortgages allow you to pay off your entire mortgage balance at any time throughout the term. The drawback is that you pay a premium for that option, through higher rates. People opt for open mortgages if they are planning to move in the near future, or if they are expecting a lump sum of money through an inheritance or bonus, which would allow them to pay more off their mortgage.
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What is the difference between a variable vs. fixed mortgage rate?
The difference between fixed and variable mortgage rates is in whether they can change over time. Fixed rates will stay the same over the course of your mortgage term (usually 5 years), while variable rates will change alongside changes in your lender’s prime rate.
Fixed mortgage rates:
Fixed mortgage rates are more popular, with 74% of all mortgages in Canada using fixed rates in 2016 (Source: Statistics Canada). The benefit of a fixed mortgage is that you are protected against interest rate fluctuations, so your regular payments stay constant over the duration of your term.
Variable mortgage rates:
Variable mortgage rates are typically lower than fixed rates but can vary over the duration of the term. Variable mortgages are prone to market behaviour (via the prime rate) which affects your payments. That means your payment amounts can change over time. While variable rates are generally lower, they are riskier than fixed rates.
Is it worth working with a mortgage broker?
There are advantages to getting a mortgage directly from a lender as well as getting a mortgage through a broker, but there are differences. While going directly to your current bank lets you consolidate your financial products, using a broker allows you to shop around quickly and easily, at no cost to you.
Luckily, you don’t need to choose one of the other. You can speak to multiple banks and multiple mortgage brokers if you want to. Ratehub.ca is a great place to start, as we compare the best mortgage rates in Canada from multiple lenders and mortgage brokers. Once you’ve compared your options, we can put you in contact with your chosen provider.
Jamie David is the Business Director of Mortgages at Ratehub.ca. A graduate of the Systems Design Engineering program at the University of Waterloo, she has over 15 years of business, marketing, and engineering experience in the financial technology, banking, education, energy and retail industries. She has worked in top organizations like TD Bank, Trading Pursuits, Petro-Canada, and the TTC. Her passion for personal finance, investing, education, and business strategy brought her to Ratehub.ca where she heads a very talented, cross-functional team that is dedicated to providing Canadians with the best mortgage experience all the way through from online search to (keys-in-your-hand) funded mortgage.