Alternative mortgage borrowing in Ontario propelled First National Financial Corporation’s Q1 figures, the company announced last month.
First National’s new mortgage originations during the first quarter stood at $3.0 billion, a marked decline from the $3.4 billion during the same time last year ago.
Among the most significant declines were in new single-family originations, which fell from $2.2 billion in 2018 to $1.8 billion this year.
On the other hand, total mortgage renewals were at $1.3 billion by Q1 2019, compared to $1.2 billion the year prior. Single-family renewals were at $916 million, from last year’s $1.1 billion.
“Looking at our business regionally, single-family volumes in Eastern Canada were almost on par with last year, but this was due to the contribution made by our ‘Excalibur’ program, which addresses the Ontario alternative mortgage market,” executive vice president Moray Tawse noted.
“Conversely, prime mortgage volumes in Western Canada declined by 35%. Our assessment is that despite these results, First National’s single-family national market share held steady.”
Tawse added that more promising results in the commercial side helped compensate for this relative weakness. During the first quarter, First National saw $1.2 billion in commercial originations (unchanged from Q1 2018) and $386 million in commercial renewals (from $152 million last year).
“In commercial, where First National is Canada's largest mortgage lender, total originations including renewals were 17% higher than a year ago, so a great start for this business.”