Upgrading Your Home? Five Ways To Refresh Your Home This Spring.

General Mark Goode 1 Jun

Are you looking to upgrade your home? With warmer weather and extended sunlight hours, spring is the perfect time to give your home a bit of extra TLC. Here are five renovation projects you can do this spring that can increase your home’s appeal, inside and out:

1. Repave your driveway.

You may have noticed that your driveway is beginning to sink, or the snow, mud, salt and tire runs have taken a toll on its surface over the years. Repaving your driveway won’t be a simple DIY project, but because it’s at the front of your home, it’s worth thinking about giving it a fresh repave or investing in a more ornate design to bring your curb appeal up a level.

2. Landscaping makeover. 

Consider lining your driveway or adding flower beds, shrubs, and trees around the perimeter of your home to not only provide privacy and a beautiful aesthetic and give homes to pollinators and other wildlife. If you want options to help mow the lawn less, consider replacing some grass with bark mulch.

3. Reseal doors and windows. 

Good sealing is crucial for weatherization, making your home less drafty, more comfortable, and energy efficient. During the colder months, your door and window caulking can crack or shrink. Ensuring that there are as few gaps as possible in your door and window sealing can prevent cold or hot air from escaping or entering your home.

4. Outdoor kitchen and seating area.

An outdoor kitchen and seating can be a great home addition to entertain guests during the warm spring and summer months. With an outdoor kitchen, everything you need can be conveniently left outside, such as barbeques, ice makers, and refrigerators, saving time from making trips in and out of the house. Additionally, you can keep lingering cooking odours and messes outside. Adding an outdoor fireplace, comfortable seating, and tables lets your family and friends gather around to relax and create everlasting memories.

5. Retrofit your home.

You may have an emotional attachment to your home and desire to age in place, but you have not planned any renovations that make it easier to move around during your golden years. To boost the accessibility and comfort of your home, you can prepare for a safer washroom by replacing a tub-style shower with a curb-less or walk-in model, or you can plan features that enable single-level living, such as moving your laundry space to the main floor.

Renovating your home can be an exciting project but comes with a price tag. If you’re a homeowner aged 55-plus, the CHIP Reverse Mortgage by HomeEquity Bank is a great option to provide you with the funds you need to refresh your home to enjoy for many years to come. You can unlock up to 55% of your home’s equity in tax-free cash, and you’re free to use your money in any way you like, such as investing in your home.


Contact our team at Mortgage Man today to learn more about how the CHIP Reverse Mortgage can help you accomplish your home renovation dreams.


Source: https://dominionlending.ca/sponsored/five-ways-to-refresh-your-home-this-spring

Frequently Asked (and not so frequently!) Mortgage Questions

General Mark Goode 25 May

New to mortgages? Have questions but not sure where to start? We have the answers!

What is the best interest rate I can qualify for?
Your credit score plays a big role in the interest rate you can qualify for. The riskier you appear as a borrower, the higher your rate will be. While it is important to understand rate is NOT the most important aspect of your mortgage, it does still play a significant part. However, in some cases you may lose out on pre-payment privileges or porting options if you opt for the lowest rate. This is why it is important to look at your mortgage as a whole for your current and future needs.

What credit score is needed to qualify for a mortgage?
Generally, you are considered a prime candidate for a mortgage if your credit score is 680 and above. The higher you can get above 700 the better, as you will access lower rates. While almost anyone can obtain a mortgage via traditional or private lenders, if you have a lower credit score the key will be the size of your down payment. A sufficient down payment can reduce the risk to the lender providing you with the mortgage, thereby opening up lower rate options

What happens if my credit score isn’t great?
There are five main things you can do to improve a low credit score.

  • Pay down credit cards so they’re below 70% of your limits. Revolving credit like credit cards have a more significant impact on credit scores than car loans, lines of credit, or other types of debt.
  • Limit the use of credit cards. Racking up a large amount and then paying it off in monthly instalments can hurt your credit score. If there is a balance at the end of the month, this also affects your score.
  • Check credit limits. If your lender is slower at reporting monthly transactions, this can have a significant impact on how other interested parties view your file. Ensure everything’s up to date as old bills that have been paid can come back to haunt you.
  • Keep old cards. Older credit is better credit. If you stop using older credit cards, the issuers may stop updating your accounts. As such, the cards can lose their weight in the credit formula and, therefore, may not be as valuable – even though you have had the cards for a long time. Use these cards periodically and then pay them off.
  • Don’t let mistakes build up. Always dispute any mistakes or situations that may harm your score. If, for instance, a cell phone bill is incorrect and the company will not amend it, you can dispute this by making the credit bureau aware of the situation.

What’s the maximum mortgage I can qualify for?
To help you determine what you can afford, check out the My Mortgage Toolbox app on the iStore and Google Play. This app can assist with various calculations to determine the amount you can afford, how much your monthly mortgage payments will be, allow you to play around with payment frequencies, and so much more. You can also get pre-qualified on the app, which you can follow up with a proper mortgage pre-approval once you are ready to start shopping! This will also assist with solidifying your budget and understanding your mortgage costs.

How much money do I need for a down payment?
The minimum down payment required is 5% of the purchase price of the home. However, it is ideal to produce a down payment of 20% to avoid paying mortgage default insurance and, in some cases, to access a better interest rate.

What happens if I don’t have the full down payment amount?
It can be hard to put together a down payment. Fortunately, there are many programs available that will allow you to utilize different forms of down payments through cash-back products, RRSP withdrawal or gifting from an immediate family member.

Should I go with a fixed- or variable-rate mortgage?
The answer to this question depends on your personal risk tolerance. If you happen to be a first-time homebuyer, or you have a set budget that you can comfortably spend on your mortgage, it’s smart to lock into a fixed mortgage with predictable payments over a specific period of time. On the other hand, if your financial situation can handle the fluctuations of a variable-rate mortgage, this may save you some money in the long run. Another option is to opt for a variable rate, but make payments based on what you would have paid if you selected a fixed rate. There are also 50/50 mortgage options that enable you to split your mortgage into both fixed and variable portions.

How much will my mortgage payments be?
Your monthly mortgage payment cost will vary based on several factors, such as the size of your mortgage, whether you’re paying mortgage default insurance, your mortgage amortization, your interest rate, and your frequency of making mortgage payments. The My Mortgage Toolbox app from Google Play and the iStore has many calculators that can help you preview different mortgage and payment scenarios.

What amortization will work best for me?
While the benchmark and typically used standard amortization period for a mortgage is 25-years, shorter or longer timeframes are available. The main reason to opt for a shorter amortization period is that you’ll become mortgage-free sooner. In addition, by agreeing to pay off your mortgage in a shorter period of time, the interest you pay over the life of the mortgage is greatly reduced. A shorter amortization also affords you the luxury of building up equity in your home sooner. Equity is the difference between any outstanding mortgage on your home and its market value. While it pays to opt for a shorter amortization period, keep in mind you will have higher monthly payments as a shorter amortization period means less payments overall. If your income is irregular or you’re buying a home for the first time and will be carrying a large mortgage, a shorter amortization period that increases your regular payment amount and ties up your cash flow may not be the best option for you.

How can I maximize my mortgage payments and own my home sooner?
Most mortgage products include prepayment privileges that enable you to pay up to 20% of the principal (the true value of your mortgage minus the interest payments) per calendar year. This will also help reduce your amortization period (the length of your mortgage). Another way to reduce the time it takes to pay off your mortgage involves changing the way you make your payments by opting for accelerated bi-weekly mortgage payments. Not to be confused with semi-monthly mortgage payments (24 payments per year), accelerated bi-weekly mortgage payments (26 payments per year) will not only pay your mortgage off quicker, but it’s guaranteed to save you a significant amount of money over the term of your mortgage. With accelerated bi-weekly mortgage payments, you’re making one additional monthly payment per year. In addition to increased payment options, most lenders offer the opportunity to make lump-sum payments on your mortgage (as much as 20% of the original borrowed amount each year).

Can I make lump-sum or other prepayments on my mortgage, or will I be penalized?
Most lenders enable lump-sum payments and increased mortgage payments to a maximum amount per year. But, since each lender and product is different, it’s important to check stipulations on prepayments prior to signing your mortgage papers. Most “no frills” mortgage products offering the lowest rates often do not allow for prepayments. As well, please note that some lenders will only let you make these lump-sum payments on the anniversary date of your mortgage while others will allow you to spread out the lump-sum payments to the maximum allowable yearly amount.

If I have mortgage default insurance, do I need mortgage life insurance?
Yes. Mortgage life insurance is a life insurance policy on a homeowner, which will allow your family or dependents to pay off the mortgage on the home should something tragic happen to you. Mortgage default insurance is something lenders require you to purchase to cover their own assets if you have less than a 20% down payment. Mortgage life insurance is meant to protect the family of a homeowner and not the mortgage lender itself.

Is my mortgage portable?
Fixed-rate products usually have a portability option as lenders utilize a “blended” system where your current mortgage rate stays the same on the mortgage amount ported over to the new property, and the new balance is calculated using the current rate. With variable-rate mortgages, however, porting is usually not available. This means that when breaking your existing mortgage, a three-month interest penalty will be charged. This charge may or may not be reimbursed with your new mortgage. While porting typically ensures no penalty will be charged when you sell your existing property and buy a new one, it’s best to check with your mortgage professional for specific conditions before making any changes.

If I want to move before my mortgage term is up, what are my options?
This will depend greatly on your particular lender and the type of mortgage you have. While fixed mortgages are often portable, variable are not. Some lenders allow you to port your mortgage, but your sale and purchase have to happen on the same day, while others offer extended periods. As long as there’s not too much time between the sale of your existing home and the purchase of the new home, as a rule of thumb most lenders will allow you to port the mortgage. In other words, you keep your existing mortgage and add the extra funds you need to buy the new house on top. The interest rate is a blend between your existing mortgage rate and the current rate at the time you require the extra money.

How much will I have to pay for closing costs?
As a general rule of thumb, it’s recommended that you put aside at least 1.5% of the purchase price (in addition to the down payment) strictly to cover closing costs such as: property transfer taxes, lawyer/notary fee, survey costs, appraisal fee, title insurance and a home inspection.

How do I ensure I get the best mortgage product and rate upon renewal at the end of my term?
The best way to ensure you receive the best mortgage product and rate at renewal is to enlist your mortgage professional to review your current mortgage product, financial situation and shop the market for you. A lot can change over a single mortgage term, and you can miss out on a lot of savings and options if you simply sign a renewal with your existing lender without consulting your mortgage professional.

What steps can I take to help ensure I don’t become a victim of title or mortgage fraud?

Red flags for mortgage fraud:
  • You’re offered money to use your name and credit information to obtain a mortgage
  • You’re encouraged to include false information on a mortgage application
  • You’re asked to leave signature lines or other important areas of your mortgage application blank
  • The seller or investment advisor discourages you from seeing or inspecting the property you will be purchasing
  • The seller or developer rebates you money on closing, and you don’t disclose this to your lending institution. Sadly, the only red flag for title fraud occurs when your mortgage mysteriously goes.
Ways to protect yourself from title fraud:
  • Always view the property you’re purchasing in person; check listings in the community where the property is located – compare features, size and location to establish if the asking price seems reasonable
  • Make sure your representative is a licensed real estate agent
  • Beware of a real estate agent or mortgage broker who has a financial interest in the transaction
  • Ask for a copy of the land title or go to a registry office and request a historical title search; in the offer to purchase, include the option to have the property appraised by a designated or accredited appraiser
  • Insist on a home inspection to guard against buying a home that has been cosmetically renovated or formerly used as a grow house or meth lab
  • Ask to see receipts for recent renovations; when you make a deposit, ensure your money is protected by being held “in trust”
  • Consider the purchase of title insurance.


Contact Mortgage Man DLC today to discuss your mortgage options!


Source: https://dominionlending.ca/mortgage-tips/frequently-and-not-so-frequently-asked-mortgage-questions

What is the First Time Homebuyer Incentive?

General Mark Goode 21 Apr



The first-time homebuyer incentive program is a shared-equity mortgage with the Canadian government that helps qualified first-time buyers reduce their monthly mortgage payments to better afford a home!

The Incentive: This program allows you to obtain an incentive from the government to assist with your down payment, thereby lowering your overall mortgage amount and, in turn, your monthly mortgage costs.

  • 5% or 10% for a first-time buyer’s purchase of a newly constructed home
  • 5% for a first-time buyer’s purchase of a resale (existing) home
  • 5% for a first-time buyer’s purchase of a new or resale mobile/manufactured home

Qualifying for the Incentive: This program is designed to assist first-time homebuyers, therefore you must:

  • Have never purchased a home before
  • Have not occupied a home that you, your current spouse or common-law partner owned in the last 4 years
  • Have recently experienced a breakdown of marriage or common-law partnership

If you meet the above criteria, further qualifications are based on your income and status as follows:

  • Your total qualifying income is no more than $120,000 ($150,000 for homes in Toronto, Vancouver, or Victoria)
  • Your total borrowing is less than four times your qualifying income (four and a half times your income if you’re purchasing in Toronto, Vancouver or Victoria)
  • You are a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or non-permanent resident authorized to work in Canada
  • You meet the minimum down payment requirements

Additional Costs: With the incentive, there are a few additional costs to be aware of such as additional legal fees (your lawyer is closing two mortgages, the one on your behalf and that on the Government’s behalf), appraisal fees to determine the repayment value of your home when it comes due, plus other potential fees such as refinancing or switching costs if you decide to move or update your mortgage.

Repayment Process: When it comes to repayment of the incentive, the homebuyer is required to pay back after 25 years or when the property is sold, whichever comes first. They are also able to repay anytime prior to this without penalty. The repayment is based on fair market value at the time of repayment and you would pay back what you received. For instance, if you received a 5% incentive, you would repay 5% of the current home value at the time of repayment.

Keep in mind, if you choose to port your mortgage or go through a separation during the term and want to buy out your co-borrower, you will have to repay the incentive sooner.

Contact Mortgage Man DLC  today to get started on your homebuying journey!


Source: https://dominionlending.ca/mortgage-tips/what-is-the-first-time-homebuyer-incentive?fbclid=IwAR1-wHGlWBpUReSgbYnzWjFBhKr8g6AEvd9XdP6qg2OKlAWpe-dzblhrtpo

Self-Employed and Seeking a Mortgage

General Mark Goode 14 Apr



Approximately 20% of Canadians are self-employed, making this an important segment in the mortgage and financing space. When it comes to self-employed individuals seeking a mortgage, there are some key things to note as this process can differ from the standard mortgage.

Qualifying for a Mortgage

In order to obtain a mortgage as a self-employed individual, most lenders require personal tax Notices of Assessment and respective T1 generals be included with the mortgage application for the previous two years. Typically, individuals who can provide this proof of income – and with acceptable income levels – have little issue obtaining a mortgage product and rates available to the traditional borrower.

Self-Employed Categories

  1. For those self-employed individuals who cannot provide the Revenue Canada documents, you will be required to put down 20% and may have higher interest rates.
  2. If you can provide the tax documents and don’t have enough stated income, due to write-offs, then you have to do a minimum of 10% down with standard interest rates.
    1. If you are able to put down less than 20% down payment when relying on stated income, the default insurance premiums are higher.
  3. If you can provide the tax documents, and you have high enough income, then there are no restrictions.

Documentation Requirements

For those individuals who are self-employed, you must provide the following, in addition to your standard documentation:

  • For incorporated businesses – two years of accountant prepared financial statements (Income Statement and Balance Sheet)
  • Two most recent years of Personal NOAs (Notice of Assessments) and tax returns
  • Potentially 6-12 months of business bank statements
  • Confirmation that HST/Source Deductions are current

Calculating Income

When it comes to calculating income for a self-employed application, lenders will either take an average of two years’ income or your most recent annual income if it’s lower.

If you’re self-employed and looking to qualify for a mortgage, or simply have, reach out to a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional today! We can work with you to ensure you have the necessary documentation, talk about your options and obtain a pre-approval to help you understand how much you qualify for.


Source: https://dominionlending.ca/mortgage-tips/self-employed-and-seeking-a-mortgage

New First Home Savings Account – Here Is What You Need To Know!

General Mark Goode 6 Apr


Prospective homebuyers wanting to take advantage of the federal government’s new Tax-Free Savings Account will have to wait longer. This new tax free savings account wont be available until later this year.

All of the Big 6 banks confirmed to CMT that they weren’t in a position to offer the new account when it launched April 1st. They are working to finalize the logistics of offering the account to clients, including obtaining the required government authorizations and awaiting tax reporting guidelines from the Canada Revenue Agency.

The new registered plan allows first-time homebuyers to save up to $40,000 for the down payment on their home on a tax-free basis. Similar to the Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA), funds in the account can be placed in a variety of investment vehicles, and can then be withdrawn tax-free as long as the funds are used for a qualifying first-home purchase.

Details of the new First-Home Savings Account

Do you have more questions about the account and how it can be used to assist with a first-time home purchase? The following are some of the key details of the program as well as its restrictions.

Who is eligible for the FHSA?

  • Any resident of Canada who is at least 18 years old.
  • Anyone who hasn’t owned a home or lived in a home owned by their spouse or common-law partner in the calendar year or four preceding calendar years.

How much can you contribute to your FHSA?

  • You can contribute up to $8,000 per calendar year, up to a lifetime limit of $40,000.
  • You can carry forward up to $8,000 in unused contributions in a calendar year to use in a later year.

What qualifies as a first home purchase?

  • Funds withdrawn from the account are only tax-free if they are used for a qualifying first-home purchase. To qualify, the purchase must meet the following criteria:
    • Be a first-time homebuyer and a resident of Canada at the time of the withdrawal and during the purchase of the qualifying home,
    • Have a written agreement to buy or build a qualifying home located in Canada before October 1 of the year following the year of withdrawal,
    • Intend to occupy the qualifying home as your principal place of residence within one year of buying or building it.

What investments are eligible within an FHSA?

  • The rules governing the FHSA are identical to those for Tax-Free Savings Accounts, meaning account-holders can invest in mutual funds, publicly traded securities, government and corporate bonds and guaranteed investment certificates (GICs) within the account.

What if you don’t use the funds to purchase a home?

  • The funds in the FHSA account must be used to purchase a first home by either the end of the 15th year after the plan was opened or by the end of the year you turn 71 years old.
  • At either of those points, or if you choose to use the funds for a purpose other than a first-home purchase, the unused balance can then be transferred to a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) or Registered Retirement Income Fund (RRIF) or withdrawn on a taxable basis.


Source: Canadian Mortgage Trends – https://www.canadianmortgagetrends.com/2023/03/new-first-home-savings-account-launches-april-1-but-wont-be-available-until-later-this-year/?fbclid=IwAR32la1khhIQ8dSA320GxSMZR0yC5smpcUEs0ruw-HUmqe4_4oKIZsk8z_M.



Canada’s Federal Budget Describes a Deteriorating Fiscal Outlook and Slowing Economy.

General Mark Goode 31 Mar



As promised, there would be nothing much in this year’s budget for fear of stimulating inflation. The federal government faces a challenging fiscal environment and a weakening economy. Ottawa promised it would err on the side of restraint. Instead, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland announced a $43 billion increase in net new government spending over six years. The new expenditures focus on bolstering the rickety healthcare system, keeping up with the US on new clean-technology incentives, and helping low-income Canadians to deal with rising prices and a slower economy.

Tax revenues are expected to slow with the weaker economy. The result is a much higher deficit each year through 2028 and no prospect of a balanced budget over the five-year horizon.

The budget outlines significant increases to healthcare spending, including more cash for provincial governments announced earlier this year and a $13-billion dental-care plan that Trudeau’s Liberals promised in exchange for support in parliament from the New Democratic Party.

Freeland is also announcing substantial new green incentive programs to compete with the Inflation Reduction Act signed into US law last year by President Joe Biden. The most significant new subsidy in the budget is an investment tax credit for clean electricity producers. Still, it also includes credits for carbon capture systems, hydrogen production, and clean-energy manufacturing.

The budget promises $31.3 billion in new healthcare spending and $20.9 billion in new green incentive spending by 2028. On top of that is $4.5 billion in affordability measures, half of which is for an extension of a sales tax credit for low-income Canadians.

The spending is partially offset by tax increases on financial institutions and wealthy Canadians and a pledge to reduce government spending on travel and outside consultants. Freeland is planning to raise billions of dollars from banks and insurance companies by changing the tax rules for dividends they get from Canadian firms. The new tax will apply to shares held as mark-to-market assets, not dividends paid from one subsidiary to another.

Wealthy Canadians pay the alternative minimum or regular tax, whichever is higher. The government announced in the budget that it is increasing the alternative minimum rate to 20.5 percent from 15 percent starting in 2024. Ottawa is also imposing new limits on many exemptions, deductions and credits that apply under the system beginning in 2024.

“We’re making sure the very wealthy and our biggest corporations pay their fair share of taxes, so we can afford to keep taxes low for middle-class families,” Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland said in the prepared text of her remarks.

Canada’s debt-to-GDP ratio will worsen next year, despite the government’s reliance on this measure as a fiscal anchor. Debt-to-GDP will rise from 42.4% to 43.5% next year and is projected to decline very slowly over the next five years.

Not Much for Affordable Housing

The budget included a laundry list of measures the federal government has taken to make housing more affordable for Canadians.

Budget 2023 announces the government’s intention to support the reallocation of funding from the National Housing Co-Investment Fund’s repair stream to its new construction stream, as needed, to boost the construction of new affordable homes for the Canadians who need them most.

But there was one initiative tucked away in a Backgrounder entitled “An Affordable Place to Call Home.” I am quoting this directly from the budget:

A code of conduct to protect Canadians with existing mortgages

“Elevated interest rates have made it harder for some Canadians to make their mortgage payments, particularly for those with variable rate mortgages.

That is why the federal government, through the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada, is publishing a guideline to protect Canadians with mortgages who are facing exceptional circumstances. Specifically, the government is taking steps to ensure that federally regulated financial institutions provide Canadians with fair and equitable access to relief measures that are appropriate for the circumstances they are facing, including by extending amortizations, adjusting payment schedules, or authorizing lump-sum payments. Existing mortgage regulations may also allow lenders to provide a temporary mortgage amortization extension—even past 25 years.

This guideline will ensure that Canadians are treated fairly and have equitable access to relief, without facing unnecessary penalties, internal bank fees, or interest charges, which will help more Canadians afford the impact of elevated interest rates.”

We will see what OSFI has to say about this, as the details are always of paramount importance. OSFI is scheduled to announce potential changes to banking regulation to reduce bank risk. We’ve heard a lot about banking risks in recent weeks.

The budget also reduced the legal limit on interest rates. The government intends to lower the criminal rate of interest from 47% (annual percentage rate) to 35%. According to the law firm Cassels, “’Interest’ is defined broadly under the Code and includes all charges and expenses in any form, including fees, fines, penalties, and commissions.”

Bottom Line

While this was not one of the more exciting budgets, it is important that our debt-to-GDP ratio is low in comparison to other G-7 countries. It is good news that Ottawa recognizes the financial burdens facing homeowners with VRMs. If the banks can extend remaining amortizations when borrowers renew, the pressure on their pocketbooks will be markedly lower.

Please Note: The source of this article is from SherryCooper.com/category/articles/

Canada’s Headline Inflation Cools in February

General Mark Goode 24 Mar

Further decline in inflation in February will keep the bank of Canada on hold in April.

All eyes will be on the Federal Reserve tomorrow when they decide whether to hold rates steady because of the banking crisis or raise the overnight rate by 25 basis points (bps). Before the run on Silicon Valley Bank, markets were betting the Fed would go a full 50 bps tomorrow, as Chairman Powell intimated to the House and Senate.

Since then, three bank failures in the US as well as the UBS absorption of troubled Credit Suisse, have caused interest rates to plummet, bank stocks to plunge, and credit conditions to tighten. Many worry that rate increases will exacerbate a volatile situation, but others believe the Fed should continue the inflation fight and use Fed lending to provide liquidity to financial institutions.

Relative calm has been restored thanks to the provision of huge sums of emergency cash by lenders of last resort–the central banks–and some of the US industry’s strongest players.

While Canadian bank stocks have also been hit, the banks themselves are in far better shape than the weaker institutions in the US. Our banks are more tightly regulated, have much more plentiful Tier 1 capital, and their outstanding loans and depositors are far more diversified.

This morning, Statistics Canada released the February Consumer Price Index (CPI). Headline inflation fell more than expected to 5.2% from 5.9% in January. This was the largest deceleration in the headline CPI since the beginning of the pandemic in April 2020.

The year-over-year deceleration in February 2023 was due to a base-year effect for the second consecutive month, which is attributable to a steep monthly increase in prices in February 2022 (+1.0%).

Excluding food and energy, prices were up 4.8% year over year in February 2023, following a 4.9% gain in January, while the all-items excluding mortgage interest cost rose 4.7% after increasing 5.4% in January.

On a monthly basis, the CPI was up 0.4% in February, following a 0.5% gain in January. Compared with January, Canadians paid more in mortgage interest costs in February, partially offset by a decline in energy prices. On a seasonally adjusted monthly basis, the CPI rose 0.1%.

While inflation has slowed in recent months, having increased by 1.2% compared with 6 months ago, prices remain elevated. Compared with 18 months ago, for example, inflation has increased by 8.3%.

Food prices continued to rise sharply–up 10.6% y/y, marking the seventh consecutive month of double-digit increases. Supply constraints amid unfavourable weather in growing regions and higher input costs such as animal feed, energy and packaging materials continue to put upward pressure on grocery prices.
Price growth for some food items such as cereal products (+14.8%), sugar and confectionary (+6.0%) and fish, seafood and other marine products (+7.4%) accelerated on a year-over-year basis in February. Prices for fruit juices were up 15.7% year over year in February, following a 5.2% gain in January. The increase was led by higher prices for orange juice, as the supply of oranges has been impacted by citrus greening disease and climate-related events, such as Hurricane Ian.

In February, energy prices fell 0.6% year over year, following a 5.4% increase in January. Gasoline prices (-4.7%) led the drop, the first yearly decline since January 2021. The year-over-year decrease in gasoline prices is partly the result of a base-year effect, as prices began to rise rapidly in the early months of 2022 during the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Shelter costs rose at a slower pace year-over-year for the third consecutive month, rising 6.1% in February after an increase of 6.6% in January. The homeowners’ replacement cost index, related to the price of new homes, slowed on a year-over-year basis in February (+3.3%) compared with January (+4.3%). Other owned accommodation expenses (+0.2%), which include commissions on the sale of real estate, also decelerated in February. These movements reflect a general cooling of the housing market.

Conversely, the mortgage interest cost index increased at a faster rate year over year in February (+23.9%) compared with January (+21.2%), the fastest pace since July 1982. The increase occurred amid a higher interest rate environment.

Bottom Line

The Bank of Canada is no doubt delighted that inflation continues to cool. Canada’s inflation rate is low compared to the US at 6.0% last month, the UK at 10.1%, the Euro Area at 8.5%, and Australia at 7.2%.

The Bank was already in pause mode and will likely stay there when they meet again in April.

Please Note: The source of this article is from SherryCooper.com/category/articles/


These are the Ontario communities that are expected to see the biggest home price declines

General Mark Goode 15 Mar

While Toronto has seen a significant dip in home prices as borrowing costs have gone up over the past year, other places in Ontario are seeing an even more dramatic drop according to a new report released Monday.

The report, from economists at financial services company Desjardins, examined the Ontario housing market in the context of recent developments, such as interest rate hikes and supply. It found that Ontario is projected to see the biggest correction compared to other provinces in Canada, an anticipated 25 per cent drop by the end of 2023 from the market’s peak. However within Ontario, the GTA is not the location where prices are projected to fall the most.

“Given nearly half of existing home sales take place in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), that market tends to garner the most attention,” the report notes.  “But during the pandemic, it was surrounding communities that grabbed more of the headlines. Home prices rose significantly in the GTA, but not nearly as much as they did in smaller Ontario communities or nationally for that matter. And these places are expected to continue seeing the biggest correction.”

Places like Windsor, Oshawa, Sudbury and London saw skyrocketing home prices from Dec. 2019 to the market’s peak during the pandemic, rising between 75 per cent to close to 100 per cent in a short period.  But that means there’s a long way to fall from those peaks now that the real estate market has cooled off.

Bancroft is expected to see the steepest decline in home prices by the end of the year, with a projected 50 per cent drop. That’s followed by Northumberland Hills (-42 per cent), Woodstock-Ingersoll (-40 per cent), Grey Bruce Owen Sound (-39 per cent) and Muskoka & Haliburton (-39 per cent).

Areas where the price is expected to fall roughly 30-38 per cent by the end of the year include Durham, London, Windsor, Guelph, Peterborough, Barrie, Orilia, Kitchener, Niagara Falls and other areas.

While prices in the GTA are still projected to fall by the end of 2023, the drop is anticipated to be softer, more like 20 per cent from peak.

Mississauga (-23 per cent), York Region (-19 per cent), Ottawa (-20 per cent), Timmins (-20 per cent) and Thunder Bay are also projected to see drops of less than 25 per cent.

“While analysts and the media follow Toronto and all‑Ontario real estate data closely, there is significant variability across communities within Canada’s largest province. Supported by buyers’ desire for more space when working and educating children from home, homebuying activity surged most significantly in smaller Ontario centres during the pandemic,” the report’s authors write. “While we expect home sales and values to find a bottom in the second half of 2023, these smaller cities should continue to experience some of the most pronounced corrections in Ontario.”

The report says the “erosion of affordability has made life challenging for households across Ontario” and calls for the provincial government to be mindful of smaller communities when proceeding with its housing plan.

“As policymakers move forward on ambitious plans to increase the housing supply to improve affordability, considering local market needs will be of paramount importance,” the report states.


Bancroft -50%

Northumberland Hills -42%

Woodstock-Ingersoll -40%

Grey Bruce Owen Sound -39%

Muskoka & Haliburton -39%

Chatham Kent -38%

Welland -38%

Windsor-Essex -37%

Peterborough & the Kawarthas -37%

St Catharines -37%

Niagara Falls-Fort Erie -36%

Parry Sound -36%

London and St Thomas -36%

Guelph -35%

Tillsonburg -34%

Quinte -34%

Huron Perth -34%

Brantford -34%

Kawartha Lakes -33%

Durham Region -33%

Cambridge -32%

Simcoe -32%

Kitchener-Waterloo -32%

Barrie -31%

Orillia -30%

Hamilton-Burlington -30%

Rideau-St Lawrence -30%

North Bay -30%

Cornwall -30%

Orangeville -29%

Southern Georgian Bay West -29%

Sudbury -28%

Sault Ste Marie -28%

Southern Georgian Bay East -28%

Renfrew -27%

Sarnia-Lambton -27%

Oakville-Milton -24%

Kingston -24%

Mississauga -23%

Greater Toronto -20%

Ottawa -20%

Timmins -20%

York Region -19%

Source: CP24 https://www.cp24.com/news/these-are-the-ontario-communities-that-are-expected-to-see-the-biggest-home-price-declines-1.6301182


Simcoe Spring Home and Cottage Show returning after three years!

General Mark Goode 10 Mar



After 26 years of being the spring event that kicked off the prime season for many businesses in our area, the local home and cottage show is returning this April.

Mandates and lockdowns prevented the annual Simcoe Spring Home and Cottage Show from being held for the last three years. After this hiatus, the spring show is returning to the Barnfield Point Recreation Centre in Orillia on April 22 and 23.

“The show has become a destination event for many in our community,” says show organizer Glenn Wagner. “Those considering a home renovation or addition, or looking for various home- and cottage-related services, have found a wealth of information at the show. It gives people a fantastic opportunity to talk face to face to the various businesses — and it gives the businesses an excellent two days of talking to their prime prospects. It’s a win-win all under one roof.”

While only January, over half of the booth space for the spring event has been sold. Wagner expects the remainder of the vendor space to go quickly now that the new year is upon us.

“We sell out every year and usually have a waiting list of firms wanting to exhibit. It will be interesting to see if this holds true in 2023. After several years with no event, I expect we will see a good deal of participation from businesses — and I expect attendance to be better than ever.”

Wagner also expressed excitement for the businesses that rely on the show being held.

“It has been a tough time for show organizers with no revenue stream for several years, but also those that rely on the show for income. The drapery and carpet rental firms; the sign companies that supply signage to those exhibiting; the facility owners that receive rent; the restaurants at the facilities — all have been really hurt by the lockdowns and mandates. I’m thrilled we can get this event going again for all concerned.”

The Simcoe Spring Home and Cottage Show will be on at Barnfield Point Recreation Centre Saturday, April 22 and Sunday, April 23 in Orillia.

Interested exhibitors can contact Glenn Wagner at 705-323-0124 or email glennwagner@rogers.com.

Local mortgage broker wins two prestigious awards

General Mark Goode 3 Mar

Mark Goode, Mortgage Man – Dominion Lending Centres (DLC) has been recognized for his hard work in 2022 as well as over the last two decades.

DLC has awarded him with a 2022 Masters award for exceeding $500,000 in gross revenue and funding over 150 files. He has also been added to the prestigious Hero Hall of Fame. This award recognizes individuals that have been with the company for over 10 years, have achieved at least $6 million in gross revenue, and funded at least 1,650 files.

Mark, who is the broker and President of Mortgage Man DLC, says, “We are very thankful to win these awards. This accomplishment is not only for me but for my team. Everyone on the team is a big part of our success and I couldn’t have won these awards without my team.”


Offering a Variety of Services

The team at Mortgage Man DLC offers a wide range of services. Including mortgage pre-approval, refinancing, mortgage life insurance, self-employed solutions, commercial/leasing options, and CHIP reverse mortgages.

“We take pride in our dedication to meeting our clients’ needs. Our customer service is a priority and we make our clients feel comfortable during the mortgage process, which we know can be a stressful,” explains Mark.

Serving the Community for Decades

Mark and his team have been serving the community for over 20 years. They are passionate about helping families achieve their home ownership goals and they love the community. As local residents, they are very involved in the local area including sponsoring the Orillia Cornhole Club.

“Winning these awards is great, but helping people get into their homes is the best feeling and why we are in this industry,” says Mark.


Source Orillia Matters: https://www.orilliamatters.com/spotlight/local-mortgage-broker-wins-two-prestigious-awards-6585943