Institute makes mortgage warning

Institute makes mortgage warning

Institute makes mortgage warning Think tank crunches mortgage stats, urges policy makers to take a close look at mortgage habits and the impact of interest rates.

Canadians have qualified for much larger mortgages over the past two decades due to record-low interest rates, and that has impacted affordability according to the Fraser Institute.

"Increased borrowing power, brought about by falling interest rates and rising incomes, is potentially the most overlooked and least understood factor influencing home prices across Canada," Niels Veldhuis, president of the Fraser Institute, said.

In its new study, Interest Rates and Mortgage Borrowing Power in Canada, the institute found mortgage interest rates fell from 7% to 2.7% between 2000 and 2016 and increased the maximum mortgage for Canadians by 53%.

“Based on average family incomes in 2000, falling interest rates resulted in increased mortgage borrowing power in the four main regions over the same period: Vancouver from $183,751 to $280,893; Calgary from $221,214 to $352,671; Toronto from $221,214 to $338,161; and Montreal from $171,692 to $262,459,” the institute said in the study.

Incomes increased in lockstep, jumping 53% nationwide – and contributing to even more purchasing power among Canadians.

And the results have the Fraser Institute warning policymakers about the potential implications of increased borrowing power.

"This increase in borrowing power -- in simple terms -- means that an average Canadian family, dedicating the same share of their income to monthly mortgage payments, can afford a mortgage that's more than twice as big now as it would have been in 2000," Veldhuis said. "As would-be homebuyers and governments contend with rising prices across Canada, policy makers should look closely at the impact of interest rates, rising incomes and increased mortgage borrowing power on home prices."

Related stories:
Elevated home prices incite consumer spending—National Bank
Consumer confidence seemingly unaffected by recent rate increases
  • Dan Pultr 2017-08-18 12:07:11 PM
    Yes, rates have dropped...however, government intervention has decreased the mortgage amount people can qualify for.
    -Increased down payment
    -Introduction of a benchmark qualifying rate (currently 4.84%...2% above the best rates available)
    -Reduced amortizations from 40 to 25yrs

    If you actually crunch the numbers, the mortgage payments the average Canadian is getting is very close to the same as they were 10 years ago.
    Post a reply