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If you are planning to buy a home in Manitoba in the near future, then you’ll likely need to take out a mortgage to finance this major purchase. Mortgages are intricate financial products and the more you know about them, the more prepared you’ll be to sign this long term contract.
Here are some important things to know about applying and getting approved for a mortgage in Manitoba.
Types of Mortgages in Manitoba
There are several different mortgage options available in Manitoba and the one you choose will depend on your particular situation and needs.
Conventional mortgages – Conventional mortgages require a minimum 5% down payment to get approved, which would be considered a high-ratio mortgage. If you are able to come up with 20%, you can avoid paying mortgage default insurance, which is a policy that protects the lender in case you fall through with your mortgage payments.
Click here to learn the difference between a conventional mortgage and a collateral mortgage.
Fixed-rate mortgages – The interest rate associated with a fixed-rate mortgage does not change over the term of the mortgage. That means mortgage payments do not change and stay the same over the mortgage term, making it easier to budget thanks to predictable payments. This is usually a good option if rates are expected to increase in the near future. In this case, you can lock in a lower rate before they increase.
Adjustable-rate mortgages – This mortgage product comes with interest rates that fluctuate over the term of the loan. At certain intervals, the rate is adjusted, which means the mortgage payment amounts will fluctuate as well. These usually come with a lower interest rate during the initial period compared to fixed-rate mortgages, but that rate can increase or decrease based on the posted rate from the Bank of Canada. If rates are not expected to increase in the near future, adjustable-rate mortgages may be a good option.
Bridge loans – Borrowers in Manitoba with bad credit may look into bridge loans, which are short-term solutions that allow borrowers to tap into the equity in their homes and give their credit scores a much-needed boost.
Second mortgages – Also referred to as a home equity line of credit (HELOC) or loan, a second mortgage is taken out against a home that is already mortgaged. Borrowing against the home allows money to be freed up and used for other purposes.
Pre-Approval Mortgages in Manitoba
Getting pre-approved for a mortgage in Manitoba before you start house hunting is highly encouraged. That’s because it will provide you with the opportunity to have your finances assessed and establish how much you can actually afford to spend on a home purchase. A pre-approval requires that you submit a number of documents to a lender for review, including:
- Tax returns
- Employment letter
- Statement of assets and liabilities
The more information you can provide to your lender in Manitoba, the easier their job will be.
Once you have a pre-approval letter, you’ll be considered more qualified in the eyes of sellers who want to make sure that the buyers they enter into a real estate contract with are financially capable of securing a mortgage. Pre-approval can also help move the final mortgage approval process along once you make an offer on a home that is accepted.
Click here to learn about how much it costs to purchase a home in your province.
Payment Options For Mortgages in Manitoba
In order to repay the mortgage loan amount in full, you’ll be given a certain time frame to do so. During that time, you’ll be expected to make regular installments to chip away at that loan amount. There are different mortgage payment schedules that lenders in Manitoba will offer and the one you select will come down to your preferences.
Look here if you’ve been searching for an installment loan in Manitoba.
Some payment options allow you to pay off your loan faster, while others allow you to make slightly smaller payment amounts that may be more affordable for some borrowers in Manitoba. Here are your options in payment frequency:
- Accelerated bi-weekly
Amortization Period For Mortgage in Manitoba
Just like the payment frequency and schedule, you have options when it comes to the length of the mortgage or the amortization period. Every mortgage will come with a due date for when the full loan amount must be repaid by.
Some buyers in Manitoba choose longer amortization periods because it allows them to make smaller payments each billing period. But because smaller payments are made and the length of time is extended, the mortgage will cost more in interest and will take longer to pay off.
Other buyers in Manitoba prefer a shorter amortization period because it allows them to pay down their loan sooner rather than later, allowing them to be debt-free in a shorter period of time. It also allows them to pay less toward interest, making the loan cost less by the end of the period. However, the payments are higher, which can make these mortgages difficult to afford for many buyers.
The most common amortization period is 25 years, though some lenders may allow longer periods if you have a really good credit score. There are also options of 20, 15, or even 10 years.
To see the differences between a mortgage term and a mortgage amortization, click this link.
Credit Score Requirements in Manitoba
In order to get approved for a conventional mortgage in Manitoba, you’ll need to have a minimum credit score of 680. Any less than this will make it much more difficult, if not impossible, to get approved for a mortgage. Borrowers with very high credit scores tend to have a relatively easy time getting approved for a mortgage and are given lower interest rates as well.
Credit scores tell lenders what a borrower will potentially be like. Low credit borrowers are more likely to miss payments, while high credit borrowers are likely to be more diligent with their payments. As such, lenders prefer to work with the latter and reward them with mortgage approval and low rates.
Mortgages For Bad Credit Borrowers in Manitoba
If you happen to have bad credit and are not able to get approved for a mortgage the traditional way, there are other options in Manitoba to consider, including the following:
Get a co-signer – While you might not be able to get approved for a mortgage by yourself, adding the name of a consumer with good credit on your mortgage in Manitoba might be a way to get approved. A co-signer does not actually own the mortgage like you do, but they are responsible for the mortgage payments if you fail to make these payments yourself. If that happens, the co-signer will have to step in to cover the payments on your behalf.
Want to know some facts about guarantor loans? Take a look here.
Alternative lenders – In Manitoba, traditional lenders like banks and credit unions may not approve you for a mortgage with bad credit, but there are others out there that might. Alternative lenders deal with borrowers who may not have all the criteria needed to get approved for a conventional mortgage.
Rather than focusing on credit scores, they will rely more on things like your down payment and income before approving you for a mortgage. It should be noted that these lenders will likely charge you a higher interest rate in exchange for loaning you money with bad credit.
Give your credit score a boost – Rather than applying for a mortgage in Manitoba while your credit score is still low, consider postponing your home purchase by a few months to a year so that you have time to improve your credit score. After making some changes and giving your score a boost, you’ll have a much easier time getting approved for a conventional mortgage at a lower interest rate.
To do that, be sure to make all of your debt payments on time, keep old credit lines open, refrain from applying for many loans, and minimize your credit card spending to no more than 30% of your credit limit.
Comparing Mortgages in Manitoba
You don’t have to settle for the first mortgage product you are offered. Instead, take the time to shop around and compare different mortgages to choose the one that’s best for you. When doing so, be sure to compare the following key components:
- Early repayment penalty fees
- Interest points to lower your rate
- Amortization period
- Pre-payment options
You can always hire a mortgage broker to do the legwork for you when comparing mortgage products to take some of the work off your plate.
Saving Up for a Down Payment
A down payment can translate into thousands of dollars that must be paid upfront before you are approved for a mortgage. But it can be a real challenge to save up that kind of money. That said, it’s still possible and doable, here are a few tips to help you gather up the funds needed for your down payment:
- Cut back on spending
- Keep a budget
- Prioritize your savings
- Take a portion of your paycheck and deposit it into a dedicated savings account
- Automate your savings
- Borrow against your RRSPs
- Take advantage of First-Time Homebuyer Programs
- Take monetary gifts from family members
- Pay off your high-interest debt
Want to know about Canada’s RRSP Home Buyer’s Plan? Get information here.
Hidden Costs of Purchasing a House in Manitoba
The overall cost of buying and owning a home goes well beyond just the mortgage and down payment. In addition to these major expenses, there are several other costs involved, including the following:
- Home appraisal
- Property taxes
- Home inspection
- Real estate commissions
- Legal fees
- Survey fees
- Home insurance
- Maintenance fees
- Title insurance
- CMHC insurance
- New home warranty fee
There are definitely plenty of costs associated with buying a home and it’s extremely important that you understand what they all are in order to know exactly how much you’ll be responsible for paying when closing day arrives.
Read this to learn more about these hidden costs.
Can I still qualify for a mortgage with bad credit?
What do I need to get a pre-approved mortgage in Manitoba?
Can I pay off my mortgage early?
Are you ready to buy a home and apply for a mortgage? Before you do, it’s important to fully understand what mortgages are and what’s involved in applying and getting approved for one. When you’re ready to buy a home and take out a mortgage in Manitoba, let Loans Canada help you find the perfect mortgage product that best suits your situation.