To assist new immigrants in settling down and purchasing a home in Canada, several banks and lenders offer mortgage solutions. This page will examine mortgages for new immigrants, including how they operate, which banks provide them, and the qualifications needed to obtain one.
What is a Newcomers Mortgage?
The majority of Canadians will require a mortgage loan in order to buy a home. A newcomer mortgage is a unique mortgage product provided by various Canadian banks for persons who are recent immigrants. They are made to assist newcomers in obtaining a mortgage even if they do not match the standards for a conventional mortgage. The following are the primary factors that make it challenging for immigrants to obtain a conventional mortgage:
- Lack of Canadian Employment History
Banks prefer it when you have worked in Canada for the past two years or more. An employment history demonstrates that your income is steady.
- Unestablished Canadian Credit History
A bank will review your credit report to determine how you have handled debt in the past. This contains your balances and credit limits as well as information about your payment history, such as if you’ve ever skipped or paid late. An established credit history demonstrates your long-term financial responsibility.
You might not have a work history or credit history in Canada if you are a recent immigrant. Banks are more lenient with regard to eligibility restrictions when it comes to newcomers’ mortgage programs. However, in order to be regarded as a newcomer to Canada, you must fulfill a number of requirements.
Am I Eligible for a Newcomers Mortgage?
The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), Sagen, or Canada Guaranty offer mortgage default insurance for people who are new to Canada. All of these insurers have minimal borrower requirements. A newcomers mortgage must be qualified with the following:
- Immigrated to Canada within the last 5 years
You must have immigrated to Canada within the last five years to qualify as a newcomer. You are no longer regarded as a new immigrant if you have been in Canada for more than five years.
- Have legal status in Canada
You must be a temporary or long-term resident of Canada. This indicates that you must be a landed immigrant or permanent resident, or a non-permanent resident with a work permit.
- Have been employed full-time in Canada for at least 3 months
For a new immigrant mortgage, you might not need to have two years of employment history, but you will need to have at least some full-time employment history. Unless you are being transferred to Canada by your existing company, you must have at least three months of full-time employment history in Canada.
- Have a down payment of at least 5%
You will be required to put down at least 5% of the purchase price. If the home costs more than $500,000, for example, the minimum down payment demand could be increased. Your lender may stipulate that the required minimum down payment must come from your own funds and savings rather than from gifts or loans. If you are unable to qualify for an insured mortgage, some lenders may want a larger down payment, such as 20%.
The minimum down payment can even be as high as 35% if you don’t have a Canadian credit history.
- Meet qualification ratios
How much of your income is used to pay off debt is shown by your debt service ratio. This ratio is bad the greater it is because you are using more of your income to pay off debt. You must have a gross debt service ratio (GDS) and total debt service ratio (TDS) of 39 percent and 44 percent, respectively.
Your GDS and TDS ratios will be evaluated using the mortgage stress test rate. Your international rental income is not taken into account when determining your GDS and TDS, but your foreign debt is.
It’s time to choose your mortgage provider if you meet these prerequisites. This can include significant Canadian banks or smaller regional lenders. You can also work with a mortgage broker to help you get a newcomer mortgage.
Steps to Getting a Newcomers Mortgage
It’s never too early or late to start considering your new immigrant mortgage alternatives, regardless of whether you have already arrived in Canada or not. Knowing the procedures might help you get ready for your home search and getting your mortgage authorized. The procedures for obtaining a new to Canada Mortgage are as follows:
- Find out how much you can afford
Knowing your budget at the beginning of the process will be helpful when you begin shopping for a property. You don’t have to choose a house that exceeds your means to pay for it. You can make an informed decision and prepare for the future when you are aware of how affordable your mortgage is. Using internet calculators, you may determine your affordability. This provides you with a general outline that you can follow. You’ll also want to start saving up for a down payment.
- Build your Canadian credit history
Even before you decide that you want to purchase a property, you should work to establish your Canadian credit history. Simply paying your phone or cable bills can accomplish this. Many institutions now provide immigrants without credit histories with complimentary credit cards. You can then begin constructing a credit history and raising your credit score as a result.
- Get a mortgage pre-approval
Newcomers may choose to obtain a mortgage pre-approval from a bank or lender to acquire a more definitive response regarding how much mortgage they are eligible to borrow. Along with rates and the size of the monthly mortgage payment, you will be aware of the maximum mortgage amount that the lender will permit you to borrow. Additionally, a note of pre-approval for a mortgage will be sent to you, which you can use when shopping for a home. You’ll also know how much down payment you will need to make so that you can start saving up for it.
- Find a real estate agent
It’s time to select a nearby real estate agent once your funds are in order. You can make an offer on a house with the assistance of your real estate agent. After your offer is accepted, you will need to have a mortgage authorized. You don’t have to obtain a mortgage from the bank or lender where you obtained a pre-approval letter. To find the cheapest rate, you can compare offers from various mortgage lenders or work with a mortgage broker.