Bank of Canada increases benchmark rate

The Bank of Canada announced today that it is raising the overnight rate .25 per cent given a strong economy and despite the uncertainty surrounding NAFTA. The Bank noted that the Canadian and global economies continue to strengthen, but that NAFTA is a definite concern so they will be cautious about any future rate hikes. The next rate-setting day is Wednesday, March 7.

Homeowners with variable-rate mortgages will see their rate increase along with a possible modest payment increase. Lines of credit will be similarly affected. Get in touch if you have a variable-rate mortgage and have questions about your mortgage strategy and whether you should lock in or not. Or perhaps you need a new mortgage, are renewing, or are looking to refinance. If you have house shopping plans, be sure to get pre-approved now.

Given new rules that went into effect on January 1, it’s very important to work with an experienced professional who knows the right questions to ask to assess your situation and provide the direction you need to save money over the long term. Good advice early will save you a lot of time and stress!

We regularly receive short-term rate promotions that are not posted online, which means our rates change frequently. Please contact us for these unpublished rate specials.

Terms Posted Rates Our Rates
6 MONTHS 3.14% 3.10%
1 YEAR 3.04% 2.64%
2 YEARS 3.24% 2.54%
3 YEARS 3.44% 2.79%
4 YEARS 3.89% 2.94%
5 YEARS 5.14% 2.99%
7 YEARS 5.30% 3.69%
10 YEARS 6.10% 3.74%

Insured mortgage rates, subject to change. Conventional and refinance rates may be higher. OAC. E&EO

 

Prime Rate 3.20%
5 yr variable 2.30%

 

Crunch the numbers and explore different scenarios with our website calculators.

Book a no-obligation chat with me to discuss your mortgage options click here: https://calendly.com/ronlefebvre

New year. New rules. New chance to review your mortgage and wealth-building options. Get in touch for a review of your situation… Click here to schedule a quick chat: https://calendly.com/ronlefebvre

Mortgage rule changes that came into effect January 1 have made rates and qualifying much more complicated, which means it’s important to get in touch as early as possible when you have an upcoming financial need.

Are you thinking about buying another home (moving up or a second home)?

1.Be careful looking online for a “best” 5-year rate. Fact is, these days a “best rate quote” is meaningless, because mortgage pricing is now based on multiple factors. Everything depends on your personal situation.

2.If you have over 20% equity, you may want to consider a 30-year amortization mortgage. Benefits can be significant and outweigh any rate premium – more purchasing power, easier mortgage qualifying, and lower payments to boost cash flow or to allow you to divert cash to build a savings buffer or use for investing. Taking a variable-rate mortgage could also improve your mortgage qualifying, allowing you to lock in later.

3.While counter intuitive, lenders offer the best rates to borrowers who need mortgage insurance because they have less than 20% down. So even if you have more than 20% down and don’t need mortgage insurance, it may actually be worth purchasing. You’ll get a lower rate and better options at renewal. I can run the numbers and see if it makes sense for you.

4.If you are self-employed, get in touch early so I can advise you on what documentation and information you’ll need for building a strong case to present to lenders.
Do you have a large loan or a stubborn credit card balance that is eating away at your cash flow?

5.While refinancing may be more difficult for some, I have access to other financing options that can help you get your debt under control.

6.Always keep up good credit habits: pay your bills on time, never let your debt exceed more than 50% of your limit, and don’t be tempted to apply for store cards “to save on your purchase today”.

7.A home with a rental suite could help offset mortgage payments in the house you’re in.
Is your mortgage coming up for renewal within the next 12 months?

8.Lenders love insured mortgages. If you have one, let’s check out the competitive landscape at renewal. If you aren’t sure if your mortgage is insured or not, I can find out.

9.If your mortgage isn’t insured, we should definitely still look at your available options or I can help you renew with your lender and make sure you get the best deal.
And finally…

10.Do you want to pay off your mortgage early, or start that long wanted renovation? Wherever you are in your homeownership journey or whatever your need, a great conversation at any time can identify all the ways you can make it happen and save thousands of dollars.

New year. New rules. New chance to review your mortgage and wealth-building options. Get in touch for a review of your situation.

Click here to schedule a quick chat: https://calendly.com/ronlefebvre

debt

TORONTO – Canadians are keen to lighten their debt loads in 2018, according to an annual opinion survey conducted for CIBC.

The Toronto-based bank says debt reduction or elimination was the top priority for 25 per cent of the poll respondents.

Paying bills or just getting by were the top goals for about 15 per cent of respondents.

By comparison, 13 per cent said their top priority was growing wealth or investments.

Lower on the list of financial goals were saving for a vacation (eight per cent), retirement (seven per cent), or for a house or renovation (six per cent).

Read more here

Posted in Personal Finance

Piggy BAnk

Because the biggest single expense in retirement is usually tax, high-income seniors should strive to use Tax-free Savings Accounts (TFSA) to minimize the tax bite in their later years.

The key is to maximize both contributions and growth no matter how old you are, which means holding proper growth investments (equities) instead of fixed-income instruments that pay a pittance.

The TFSA is a mis-named vehicle,” says T.E. Wealth’s senior vice president Warren Baldwin, who prefers the term “Tax-free Portfolio Account” or TFPA. Still, it’s fortunate that despite the misnomer, the TFSA can act as a TFPA.

Because the TFSA was introduced only in 2009, most seniors have ten times as much money in RRSPs and RRIFs than TFSAs, says Sandy Aitken, CEO of M-Link Mortgage Corp, developer of TFSA Maximizer. Over 15 years, his product aims to reverse that ratio.

The main issue is when RRSPs convert to RRIFs after age 71 (if not annuitized) and the legislated annual minimum withdrawals that require them to pay income tax at high marginal tax rates.

 Why is the TFSA so valuable to seniors? Click here to find out

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Budget

 

As you’re closing one year and resolving to make the next one even better – in whatever way you have in mind – remember that your financial plan has to be ready for the new year, too. You need to go over what you did with your money in 2017 and consider what expenses you’ll face in 2018. In short, you need a budget.

“While [budgeting’s] not necessarily anyone’s favorite part of the financial planning process, it’s a really important part because that’s where you can uncover opportunities or problems,” says Chantel Bonneau, a financial advisor with Northwestern Mutual. “And it really gives us the data to take action from there.”

Here are five steps to build your budget for the new year.

Click here for full article

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