How has your 2020 been so far?
Normally, a new year means new opportunities and New Year’s resolutions to fulfill. However, 2020 came with an unexpected visitor: COVID-19. This pandemic has overturned the world and everyday life is different. People are not only stressed about their health but their finances as well.
One of the most affected industries in Canada is the housing market. Mortgages are unpaid left and right and borrowers are at a loss on how to cope with mounting debt. According to a poll with a sample size of 1,335 Canadians, 6% have already missed a mortgage payment and that 67% of them are already foreseeing another missed payment in the coming months.
Because of that, the Canadian government, along with the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) have come up with mortgage assistance options that would help its citizens with their current financial woes.
Option 1: Mortgage Payment Deferral
A mortgage payment deferral gives you the chance to suspend paying your home loan for up to six months. This was set up with help from various financial institutions to help families keep their homes during the pandemic.
Please note that while you may be relieved of paying on your mortgage, this will still accumulate on your existing loan, including the interest charges.
For more information on mortgage payment deferral, read “Understanding Mortgage Deferrals in Canada During COVID-19”.
Option 2: Refinancing Your Mortgage
Refinancing in the time of a pandemic is becoming more common especially with homeowners who want to secure a lower interest rate and use some of the savings to cover their current necessities.
Since the liquidity and retirement savings of Canadians have been deeply affected by COVID-19, some are taking the risk of paying off additional expenses to keep them afloat.
Before you decide to refinance, compare your current interest rate plus charges to the new rate and charges.
Determine if the savings between the two is worth it… If so, then it’s time to have a chat with your mortgage broker.
Option 3: Change Your Mortgage from Variable to Fixed Rate
A fixed rate mortgage means that the interest rate for the duration of your loan term remains the same. On the other hand, a variable rate mortgage, the interest can fluctuate over time depending on the prime rate. (Reading enrichment: “Essential Characteristics and Features of a Mortgage Loan”)
Option 4: Tap into Your HELOC (Home Equity Line of Credit)
How many years have you been paying your mortgage? Chances are, you may be qualified for a HELOC.
A Home Equity Line Of Credit is a revolving source of potential funds that would be taken out of your home’s current equity. There are many uses for your HELOC and if you’re in dire need of some emergency funds, this is a viable option. (Reading enrichment: “Everything You Need to Know about Home Equity Loan”)
There are various paths that can help during this crisis; it’s just a matter of choosing the right one that’s beneficial to you.
Remember, you’re not in this battle alone, you have a mortgage broker here, that’s ready, willing and able to assist.