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Mortgage Refinance Burlington Ontario

With mortgage rates starting to head up, refinancing a mortgage can still make great sense at these historically low interest rates in Canada.

As the global economy recovers and in particular, the Canadian economy thrives with housing having erased most losses of two years ago.

Refinancing your Ontario mortgage is tantamount to applying for a secured home loan in order to pay off higher interest rate loans and credit card balances. In so doing, you can save hundreds or even thousands of dollars as some credit card interest rates can approach 20 percent. Some department store cards, or even the Home Depot credit card can quickly become a very high interest rate loan if not paid off in time.

Needless wasting of hard earned dollars by paying too much on interest loans does not have to be the norm. With a simple consulation and some paperwork, big savings on interest expenses can be achieved within a week or two of applying. As there are fees related to refinancing a mortgage, these factors need to be taken into consideration to determine your net savings if any by doing a “refi”.

Having access to extra cash is also a great reason to refinance. Whether you are taking the leap and putting money into the home to finish the basement, landscape or other home related expenses, or a combination of maintenance and liquidity, a home equity loan or line of credit may be the answer.

For most people, the home is the largest asset they possess. Being able to get at some equity during a time when the money can be put to better use is also a good reason to refinance your mortgage.

Some people purchased their homes while interest rates were still higher. By converting into a lower rate offered today, savings can also be obtained even if extra cash or credit card consolidation is not needed.

Some homeowners use the home as a cash generator as it goes up in value. This though, was one of the errors that lead to problems in the States when housing prices come back down. So refinancing should have a purpose besides just getting extra cash out of the home, and contingencies should be planned for before committing to a mortgage refinance.

It is best to consider your options with a Burlington Mortgage broker who knows the Southern Ontario real estate market as well as current options for getting refinanced.

Mortgage Burlington

New Homes vs. Resale Homes in Ontario

New home builders have cut back on the production of new homes in the wake of the global financial crisis, but have reactivated building permits last year only to be met with one more homebuyer resistance factor.

The new HST tax on new homes may not affect low priced homes as much due to rebates being offered, but on the higher end homes, the full burdon of the HST plus LLT or land transfer tax packs a big wallup.

This tax may have price so called “home-flippers” out of the market. These speculators created a liquid market for real estate by buying homes and reselling them over time to willing buyers. Many times these speculators also invested in upgrading the home over the standard builder fixtures.

One thing is for certain, a million dollar home may cost as much as an additional 10% in order to buy new. This will artificially put pressure on new home prices and may give a slight lift to preowned homes.

How it plays out over the next year remains to be seen, but levying a full tax on new homes cannot be a good thing for new home construction in Ontario.

If you are looking to refinance your home or buy a preowned home, get financing from one of Burlington’s expert mortgage brokers or agents such as Homeloansontario.ca

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Rising Mortgage Interest Rates in Ontario

Mortgage Broker Ontario

Mortgage Broker Ontario

Canadian banks are hiking mortgage rates and continue to eye further hikes this year. Just as predicted, rates will rise over the second half of 2011. The more and the faster The Bank of Canada raises interest rates, the quicker the banks will follow suit and raise mortgage rates.

This is already happening before the Spring real estate market. Traditionally the Spring has been the best time of year to sell a home because there are the most buyers looking to make a summer move.

However this past year, the ending months of the year were particularly strong ahead of predicted interest rate rises. The buyers that are jumping into the market because of interest rate deals are taking up 5 year fixed mortgages to avoid the added and unknown expense of gambling on a variable rate during rising interest rate times.

Traditionally, it has usually been better to take the variable as you start the game ahead by getting a lower rate than the fixed rate. Even the 5 year fixed rate on a 30 year mortgage is a quasi-variable rate because it resets in 5 years to the current market value.

Chances are the in 5 years from now rates will be considerably higher than they are now. Proponents of variable interest rates argue that payments made in the early part of the mortgage allow more money to go toward principle hence creating less financing costs over the long haul.

Whether you have an appetite for a little risk by opting for the variable rate despite knowing mortgage interest rates are ahead, or you want to sleep at night knowing exactly how much your mortgage payment will be, the real estate market promises to be hot in Canada again in 2011 because we are still historically on the low side of interest rates.

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced today:
“The recent increase by a couple of the banks is exactly what we expected,” Flaherty explained to reporters at the House of Commons yesterday.

And more interest rate increases should be coming, Flaherty predicted, since the lending rates have been held at historic lows for quite some time.

“We’re likely to see higher interest rates as we go forward because interest rates are still very low.”

With the finance minister broadcasting higher rates, now seems to be the time to lock in lower rates for those that have not yet done so and want to take advantage of this historical anomaly.

Dominion Lending is a mortgage broker in Ontario, contact Lee Anne Taylor at Home Loans Ontario about getting the lowest interest rates available. Home Loans Ontario will shop your loan across dozens of potential lenders to arrive at the best deal for your particular situation and needs.

Housing Prices Predictions for 2011

Housing prices for Canada are all over the map for the 2011-2012 year.

Most everyone seems to agree that mortgage rates are currently artificially low and are providing stimulus to a housing market that has ignored the global financial crisis. Pundits are saying again
today that the Canadian housing market is overheated and due for a correction, but they have been saying that for the last three years.

But for a brief dip during the worldwide calamity, housing prices in Canada have roared back.
While it is true that Vancouver and other Western Canadian home prices have soared beyond a reasonable level, the gains seen in the G.T.A. were more moderate.

As a result others are forecasting stable but slow growth because they are assuming rates will not rise too fast to put too large of a damper on housing prices.

It is interesting to note that the naysayers are pointing to increasing interest rates as the downfall of housing, but fail to recognize that interest rates are currently artificially low.
A moderate raise in rates would only bring them back to more historically normal levels, not the source of a major housing decline.

Oil prices, the Loonie and Interest Rates seem to be the public triggers that will influence home prices going forward. With moderate interest rate recovery, a stable Loonie and fairly high oil prices over the foreseeable future, home prices do not look unreasonable in the G.T.A.

Low interest rates are actually a reason to buy before the cost of financing a home becomes more expensive again.

Home Renovation Financing in Burlington Ontario

Home Reno

Home Reno

Is it time to do some home renovating?

Sometimes home renovations do not need to be put off due to financing concerns as you can obtain a low interest home equity loan or home equity line of credit.

For smaller repairs and renovations, some building supply stores such as the Home Depot will allow you to delay paying the balance of your purchases for up to a year depending on the promotion, usually on purchase amounts over $300 charged to a current Home Depot card. The caveat with these types of programs is that if you don’t keep an eye on the expiration date of the program, you can be back billed all of the foregone interest at ridiculously high interest rates.

The safer and more manageable way to finance interior home renovations is through a HELOC or home equity line of credit. Your Burlington mortgage broker can help you get the lowest rates on a line of credit by shopping different lenders for you and at no cost to the borrower.

Home renovations can actually put value in your home, especially upgrading kitchens and baths.
Basement finishing in Toronto can also increase the value of your home, but such a larger project should be left to professionals that can do the framing, drywall work, electrical, plumbing and other services needed to complete a quality basement renovation or finishing. In the G.T.A., contact Carcone Construction for a quote on your basement remodel – JC Carcone has been in the construction business for over 30 years and is a local, reliable company that will get the job done on budget and on time.

For your mortgage or home equity line of credit in Burlington, contact Lee Anne Taylor at www.homeloansontario.ca .

Of course you can start a tax free savings account and plan ahead for a few years until the renovation costs can be saved, but if you get a low interest rate and have plenty of equity in your home, you can get the home renovation completed sooner. Winter months are a great time to have your basement remodelled as contractors are available that cannot complete outdoor work during the cold winter months.

Interest rates are poised to rise, so keep that in mind when borrowing against your home, or inquire into a fixed rate option. You can also find out about CHMC Purchase Plus improvements program that offers CMHC insured loans to cover coasts of major home renovations and home upgrades.

Renovations can increase the liveability of your home, increase the value, decrease the amount of time the home would be listed for sale in the case of a pending sale and most of all get your home into top shape.

Can Increasing Consumer Debt in Canada cause a Housing Decline?

Mortgage Calculator - Consumer Debt Canada

Canadian Consumer Debt

Another story is emerging in the Canadian housing market as pundits search for signs of a more moderate housing recovery.

Instead of banks in Canada being exposed to massive mortgage defaults such as in the States, banks in Canada seem to be

saddled with an increasing amount of consumer debt.

The nay-sayers are worried that if unemployment starts to increase and consumer debt borrowers are not able to meet

their credit card payment oblilgations or payments on their lines of credit, then banks could have a bigger problem.

In Canada, most of the riskier home loans are guaranteed by the CMHC which is backed by taxpayers.

More recent debt financing vehicles such as HELOC represent an increasing percentage of outstanding household debt.

The home equity line of credit is the second largest debt pool behind mortgage debt itself.

The latest change by the federal government is to stop allowing banks to get CMHC insurance for HELOCs. This could create an alternate

form of capping home price increases due to necessary sales resulting from HELOC defaults which in turn can lead to foreclosures.

Whether the consumer overextension will flow into the mortgage market remains to be seen, but the total amount of household debt in

Canada is on the rise and that may cause home prices to moderate from their quick rebound after the impact of the global financial crisis.

Flaherty Announces New Mortgage Rules

Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced new mortgage rules today. Individuals wanting to refinance their homes are now limited to 85% of the homes appraised value down from 90%. Not too long ago Canadians wishing to borrow against their home could do so at 95% of the home’s value.

The policy change was made without a congressional vote. This amounts to a major policy change that will likely affect hundreds of thousands of families every year but did not have to go through parilament and a confidence vote.

According to popular opinion, mortgages are fundamentally a private contract between a bank and a client that should have only basic federal regulation. Canada has one of the most conservative and stringent banking systems in the world which takes on the least bad debt of any banking system in the world.

Opinion on the street yielded following commentary: “Last year the refinancing limit was dropped from 95% to 90 percent in Canada. This year it drops to 85%, where will it stop? If Flaherty is so concerned about household debt he should be doing something about our tax burden. Relieve some of our taxobligations and we won’t need to sell so much of our our souls to the banks for the basic necessities of life.
This is going way too far. After being caught up in last years reduction from 95% to 90% refinancing limitaiton, I have since being setting myself up to refinance to accomplish some very important issues at home based on a 90% mortgage. Now that is all gone at the whim of a self important politician who thinks he knows better about my family than do I! This is far more than the beginning of the end of Canada’s middle class.”

Politicians will argue that they are doing what is best for the people. They know that interest rates are poised to rise so are doing their job to stem the problems rising interest rates may cause. Should rates rise faster than expected, many Canadians may be forced from their homes.

But the other side of the coin is that the household debt that needs reducing first are the high interest credit cards and the loan shark high interest loans. Taking away the possibility to move high interest unsecured debt to low interest secured debt will just mean more money out of pocket for those already struggling with the aftermath of a global economic meltdown coupled with extremely high taxes.

Once again as the government makes housing less affordable for those in growing or recovering businesses and careers, there is no reduction in heavy handed taxes which would also be a way to put more money back in people’s pockets.

In any case, the new mortgage rules are here to stay, so no more refinancing above 85% of the home’s value and of course every new mortgage must qualify at the 5 year fixed rate.

Mortgage Burlington

Christmas in Burlington

Christmas in Burlington


Christmas in Burlington

Being in the center of the Golden Horseshoe are of the GTA, Burlington is close to both Toronto and Niagara as well as other Lake Ontario area destinations. There are many Christmas and holiday related activities in the region from the Christmas parades and festivities to the awesome Festival of Lights in Niagara Falls.

Burlington captures the Christmas spirit with many local events such as the Singleton Family Lights On Christmas Display located in Campbellville and a tradition now for over 30 years. The Singletons share their love for Christmas each year by putting on an impressive Christmas display featuring lights, music, animated boxes, giant candy canes, snowmen, reindeer and holiday joy.

The Singleton Family Christmas Festival of Lights is open to the public free of charge from mid-November to the end of December and they accept donations for the Halton Women’s Place for its Children’s programs. The display is located south of Highway 401 (exit 312) in Campbellville at 8565 Guelph Line.

The United Church also holds Christmas Concerts such as Saturday evening November 27 at the 375 Plains Road East location (7:30 pm to 9 pm).

Friday December 3, 2010 at 8 pm, the Gingerbread Village and Tree Lighting Event is being held at 422 Pearl Street. This year there will be twelve gingerbread houses decorated to the nines, so sip some cider and hear the Victorian carolers share holiday songs. The official tree lighting occurs at 8:30pm to light up the Village Square.

Sunday December 5, 2010 features the Christmas Parade in Burlington at 2 p.m. which starts from the Burlington Mall, Prospect Street and Guelph Line. This year there are over 65 entries in the parade.

So join your fellow merrymakers this year and get in the holiday spirit. It seems it will be a White Christmas in Burlington this year.

Burlington Ontario Suburb and Halton Region has Low Crime

Burlington Ontario Crime

For a town of over 173,000 residents, Burlington Ontario is a safe place to live, work and raise a family. According to the Halton Regional Police Service, the reports of violent crime per year in all of Halton Region was only 386 in 2009 and there were only 1,729 property crimes in all of 2009 as well. There are a few break and enter crimes as there are anywhere, but Halton Regional Police pride themselves on quick response and also partner with Crime Stoppers of Halton to achieve a safe community standard.

The Crime Stoppers of Halton is a non-profit, non-police organization that encourages public engagement in crime prevention.   This organization has processed over 10,000 tips from the community since its inception in 1988.  Even local high schools are facilitating the use of the Crime Stoppers network to report crimes in the community.  By having each citizen be the eyes and ears of law enforcement, the unwanted element is kept at bay.

There are several common themes to teach kids to take a proactive stance against crime.

Teach kids never to talk to strangers

Know where your kids are at all times

Make a list of your kids local hangouts, friends and neighbors for easy phone access

Kids should always walk in a group or with a friend, never alone

When walking home from school, kids should take the best public path and not wander through forested areas or other shortcuts.

The communities of Oakville, Burlington and Ancaster are some of the nicest communities in the region.

Burlington Ontario Tourism Video

Here is a nice video about Burlington Ontario Canada.

Burlington Ontario offers 4 season living on the shores of Lake Ontario Canada. This growing community is between Oakville and Hamilton with a population about the same size as Oakville.