Whether you’re getting set to apply for your first mortgage (congratulations! ), or you’re renewing your mortgage, you’re in a pickle. Do you go with a fixed-rate or adjustable-rate mortgage? There are several elements at work here.
Your own resources, risk tolerance, and the present economic scenario are all factors to consider. We explain the distinctions between fixed-rate and variable-rate mortgages so you can pick the best one for you.
What exactly is a fixed-rate mortgage?
The name is self-explanatory. A fixed-rate mortgage has the same interest rate for the duration of the loan. The term of your mortgage contract is its duration. It might last anywhere from a few months to several years.
Fixed-rate mortgages have higher interest rates than variable-rate mortgages, but they are a better alternative if: interest rates are now very low, and you want to lock in your rate and avoid any potential future rises.
You’d rather budget for constant and predictable payments with the same principal-to-interest ratio regardless of market volatility.
What is a variable-rate mortgage in Canada?
A variable-rate mortgage changes based on your financial institution’s prime rate. The prime rate is primarily determined by the Bank of Canada’s key interest rate. Variable-rate mortgages are changed monthly to account for these swings. It’s an appealing option if you want to take advantage of a cheaper rate from the start as well as prospective rate drops over your term.
In the case of rate rises, your budget can withstand an increase in monthly payments or a reduction in principle owed.
A capped variable rate fluctuates with the market but never exceeds a level set when you take out a mortgage. This option allows you to benefit from rate reductions while also protecting yourself from rate rises. It is important to know that this sort of tariff generally comes with an extra fee.
A variable-rate mortgage has fixed payments
With a variable-rate mortgage, several financial institutions will provide fixed monthly payments. How does this function? If your interest rate falls, you’ll pay more principal and less interest; if it rises, you’ll pay more main and less interest. When interest rates hit a specific percentage, your lender will contact you to alter your mortgage payments.
Are variable rates and fixed payments the best of both worlds?
No, not always. Even if your payments are set, rate swings will have an influence when it comes time to renew your mortgage. To maintain the same amortization time, you may need to raise your monthly payments. To preserve your reduced payments, you’ll need to refinance your mortgage and prolong your amortization.
Variable-rate mortgages are frequently the best option.
Many economic analysts believe that variable-rate mortgages are more helpful in the long run than fixed-rate mortgages.
That being said, bear in mind that the best alternative for you will be determined by your economic status, personal resources, and risk tolerance. Each instance, like other financial products, is unique.
What happens if variable interest rates rise?
If you acquire a cheap 5-year variable-rate mortgage right now (be pre-approved to lock in your best qualifying rate for up to 120 days), you still have room for multiple upward adjustments to keep you on the saving side.
However, although a variable rate mortgage offers more savings, it also introduces more unpredictability, as your mortgage payments will fluctuate in tandem with interest rate swings.
Ask yourself if you’re willing to make budget adjustments if variable rates rise in order to potentially save more money over the course of your term.
Depending on your mortgage package, you may be able to swap later. We have an excellent All Inclusive Mortgages discounted 5-year variable rate with flexible options and minimal prepayment penalties. If you decide to lock in a fixed rate later, you may still save more money throughout the period.
Are fixed-rate mortgages still a viable option?
Yes, if you desire regularity in your mortgage payments or more assurance in controlling your interest rate risk.
Despite recent rises, fixed mortgage rates are still lower than they were at the start of 2020 (an average of 2.83 percent), and even lower than they were at the end of 2018. (an average of 3.59 percent back then).
The era of the lowest fixed rates is past. However, our current fixed rates remain a fantastic alternative for people who want the security of knowing their monthly mortgage payments and how much they’ll put down on principle by the end of their term. Some clients just will not sleep well unless they are committed to a fixed rate.
- Many of our clients continue to choose our flexible All Inclusive Mortgages fixed-rate mortgage solutions at their best qualifying rates to save an average of $3,000 each loan.
- Try out our Compare and Save tool to discover how much you can save with our lower rates.
So, which rate should I go with?
Of fact, forecasting the exact future of rates would necessitate time travel (and who wants to mess with that).
Our specialist brokers remain on top of the latest news and murmurs to help you through these changing times, regardless of how much rates may rise or when. We’ll lay out your best rate possibilities and assist you in accounting for any adjustments that may occur along the route.
Right now, the focus is on our variable rate mortgage, which is worth considering if you want to save more money over time.
Please contact us. We’re always available for mortgage guidance, no matter where you are in Canada.