Pick the Right Perks for your Adjustable Rate Mortgage

These are heavy days for Canadian homeowners. If you’ve been in your home even a few years, you’ve probably already enjoyed a modest climb in the value of your home. Even if you don’t intend to sell, it’s good to know that your real estate investment is doing well. But we’re also enjoying an environment in which mortgage rates have reached historic lows.

That combination — strong valuations and low mortgage rates — has an unprecedented number of Canadians looking for ways to capitalize on the great opportunities available to them.

Whether it’s to buy their first home, trade up, or take equity back out of their homes, Canadians are jumping at the opportunity to borrow at today’s rock-bottom rates.

While many homebuyers are reconsidering the value of fixed-rate mortgages to lock in those low rates, you should keep in mind that adjustable-rate mortgages – the darling of the dropping rate trend – can still offer real value to homeowners. It’s a matter of finding the right combination of mortgage features and options.

As banks have been joined by other lending institutions, we have seen our menu of ontario mortgage options grow accordingly – with some innovative new mortgage types now available to help Canadians take advantage of today’s unusual opportunities.

One of the most innovative mortgages we’ve seen in a very long time is a new adjustable-rate mortgage with some very compelling features. First, it’s based on an institutional rate benchmark known as Bankers Acceptance. Most of us are familiar with the rate benchmark known as Canadian Prime – and we are accustomed to assessing mortgage rates based on Prime. The BA, on the other hand, is the rate at which banks will lend money to one another – and it’s typically a lower rate (sometimes much lower) than the prime rate offered to a bank’s best customers. The new BA-based mortgage – compared to the best prime-based mortgage available – could have saved a mortgage client a bundle over the last several years, primarily because the prime rate tends to be “stickier” in an environment where rates are falling. Often, the more fluid, market-based BA rates deliver the rate change more quickly. The BA rate is no trade secret, by the way; pick up a copy of your favourite financial paper and look for the published money rates to find the Bankers Acceptance Rate.

But the attractive rate structure is not the only perk. The same BA-based mortgage – so welldesigned to help clients wring the last quarter point from their mortgage rate – now also comes with a rate cap which guarantees that your rate will never climb higher than 2.15% above the starting base rate – no matter what happens to rates during your mortgage term. There’s no worry about locking in too high because the rate is always adjustable down.

Only the ceiling is fixed. It’s a homebuyers’ dream:

A mortgage with limited upside and unlimited downside. If you’re thinking about buying a home this year, or you haven’t had your mortgage reviewed in the last several months, take the opportunity to get an expert assessment of your many options from a mortgage professional. It could be the best investment you’ll make this year!

The House Team is commited to providing quality information to help people make informed decisions about their mortgage financing needs.


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