1) Effective January 1st, 2018, uninsured mortgage consumers must qualify using a new minimum qualifying rate. The rate will be the greater of the five-year benchmark rate published by The Bank of Canada or the lender contractual mortgage rate +2.00%. 
2) As expected the Bank of Canada has raised its benchmark lending rate by 25 basis-points to 1.25%. Canada’s biggest banks have increased their prime rate by a quarter of a percent. New prime rate is 3.45%. 
3) Effective the week of January 22nd, 2018, the Bank of Canada is changing its 5-year benchmark qualifying rate to 5.14% for insured mortgages. 
A report by Mortgage Professionals Canada estimates the new rules mean buyers will be able to afford to borrow 20 per cent less than under the previous rules.
Oxana Petrenko, BSc, FMA |  Mortgage Agent