Mortgage Monday Rate Update – March 2012

March 12, 2012

Mortgage Monday

Whether you like it or not, stats and numbers are a part of the world of mortgages. When rates change even the slightest of percentage points, it could cost or save you thousands of dollars. Every once in a while, here on the Mortgage Monday posts, I’ll update you on what’s going on in the world of mortgage rates. If this kind of stuff doesn’t really interest you, I won’t be offended if you just skim through it – I’ll try to make it as painless as possible.

  • The Bank of Canada interest rate is still holding steady at 1.00%.  I don’t think anyone is expecting this to change any time soon.  The next meeting date is April 17th, 2012.
  • The Bank of Canada prime lending rate is also holding steady at 3.00%. It has also been holding steady since Fall 2010 – I also wouldn’t be surprised if we see ‘prime’ at 3% into 2013.
  • The qualifying rate (the rate you would need to qualify at for a variable mortgage) for a 5-year mortgage has increased from 5.14% (which was the lowest it had been in decades) down to 5.24%.
  • The current best variable rate (changes daily) is still in the prime-0.2% (2.8%) ballpark, though many lenders currently are offering ‘prime’ as their variable rate.  With the loss of “discounted” variable rates, the majority of mortgage-seekers are opting for fixed rates.
  • The current best 5-year fixed mortgage rate (changes daily) is a bit lower thanks for the BMO 5-year 2.99% special (though their 2.99% mortgage has many limitations).  Most standard 5-year mortgages (without all the limitations/restrictions) is still in the 3.19%-3.29% range – again, always contact your mortgage broker for current best rates for your situation (and as we’ve talked about previously, The Best Mortgage Rate is Not Always the Best Option).
  • The “hot term” in Canada these days (other than the BMO 2.99% limited mortgage, and numerous other 4-year terms with the same rate from other lenders – let me know if this is something you’re interested in taking a look at), is the full-featured, 10-year fixed mortgage with rates as low as 3.89% (check out my post from a couple of months ago on the 10-Year Mortgage Below 4%).  If you want to lock in for a decade and record-low rates, definitely take a look at locking in for 10 years at less than 4%.

As noted above, some of these numbers change monthly, where as some change daily. While I’m happy to provide an update on what’s going on as rates, if you’re interested on getting personalized mortgage advice, speak to your favorite mortgage broker who can help you decide the best rates and options for you.

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About Tim

Tim is a mortgage agent in Barrie who specializes in helping first-time home buyers. He works with a variety of lenders and can help customize a mortgage with the best rates & options that fit the needs of each customer.

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