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So you have decided to buy a home! (In Canada)

You will typically have a down payment of at least 5% of the purchase price of the dwelling, depending on the dwelling type.

  • Normally, the minimum down payment comes from your own resources. However, a gift of a down payment from an immediate relative is acceptable for dwellings of 1 to 4 units. For eligible borrowers, additional sources of down payment, such as lender incentives and borrowed funds, are also permitted. Check with your lender for qualifying criteria and availability.
  • Your total monthly housing costs, including Principal, Interest, property Taxes, Heating (P.I.T.H.), the annual site lease in the case of leasehold tenure and 50% of applicable condominium fees, shouldn’t represent more than 32% of your gross household income (Gross Debt Service (GDS) ratio).

    Closing costs include but are not limited to one-time items such as lawyer fees, HST as applicable, land transfer tax if applicable, adjustments, etc., to allow you to complete the house purchase.  You also need to think about closing costs (for example, legal and land transfer fees) equivalent to 1% to 3% of the purchase price. Many first-time buyers are surprised by these costs.

    Also, if you are considering alternative lending options and need to know the credibility of the lender, consult this CMHC approved list of lenders.


    I hope this article has been of interest to you, please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns!
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