Updated mortgage stress test rules

In early May, the Bank of Canada announced another increase in the mortgage stress test interest rate used for those seeking a home loan. The rate increased by 20 basis points from 5.14 percent to 5.34 percent. It was the fifth increase since May 2017, when the rate was 4.64 percent. Previously only those seeking an insured mortgage (paying less than 20 percent of a down payment) were required to go through the stress test. But as of 2018, all homeowners must pass. The stronger stress test is meant to ensure that borrowers can still keep Jul up with their mortgage payments as interest rates are rising. The stricter rules mean more first-time buyers will have to wait longer and save up more before diving into homeownership, or seek other ways to boost their savings.

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