Rumour has it that lending limits for home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) could be slashed come the end of this month. These moves, which relate to the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions’ new mortgage underwriting guidelines, will limit federally regulated lenders to limit all new HELOCs to 65 percent loan-to-value, down from the current rate of 80 percent.
Canada’s big banks are required to comply with new guideline by the end of the fiscal year – October 31, 2012. However many lenders are already planning changes to take effect in September. Read more
The first round of changes to Canada’s mortgage rules were more bark than bite, according to a letter sent to the nation’s banks on Wednesday from the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions. Earlier this year, mortgage experts speculated that new mortgage rules could have a dampening effect on hot real estate markets, as more and more mortgage applications would inevitably be rejected.
Draft guidelines released in March suggested that the OSFI would eliminate 100% financing using a 5 percent cashback mortgage as well as enforce stiffer regulations concerning loan-to-value ration calculations and stated income mortgages. The document also inferred that borrowers would be required to re-qualify each time their mortgage came up for renewal.
However, Wednesday’s announcement tells an entirely different story.
More stringent mortgage qualifications are on the way. On Tuesday, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions in Canada released draft recommendations that would impact Canada’s banks and other federally regulated lenders.
The 18 page document contained a slew of information, the majority of which make complete sense. However, there’s still great cause for concern in the financial sphere. According to this document, the OSFI is proposing a swift implementation that could shake the system off its foundations. One reputable mortgage source described the OSFI’s recommendations as a “policy-initiated free-fall”.
Covered bonds have long been a source of cost-efficient and secure financing for lenders. A staple of European financing for nearly 200 years, covered bonds first made their way onto the Canadian banking scene in 2007. Since then, Canadian covered bonds have helped to lower mortgage rates (indirectly) and have provided borrowers with additional financing options. So just what are these bonds and why are some economists calling them the next hottest mortgage products? Read on to find out! Read more