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Mortgage Broker News

  • FirstLine Mortgages FirstLine has re-launched its Matrix and variable-rate mortgages.
  • Maple trust will reportedly officially merge with Scotiabank on October 31.
  • Mortgage Alliance has sold about $1 billion of its private labelled RightMortgage in the last year. It’s a product whose rate depends on the features you add to the mortgage (like prepayment privileges). Mortgage Alliance is also one of the first Canadian brokerages to have their proprietary mortgages listed in public rate tables, like FP’s.
  • BNN says “Optimum Mortgage, Canadian Western Bank’s alternative mortgage business, has seen its loans grow 21% year-over-year to reach $432 million at the end of July. Almost 60% of that business is in Alberta. About 5% of the bank’s total loan portfolio consists of alternative mortgages in Optimum. At the end of Q3, Optimum’s loan book had a fairly conservative average loan-to-value ratio at initiation of approximately 70%.” This is according to Desjardin analysts Michael Goldberg, who adds that “Optimum has clearly scaled back its lending in B.C.”
  • We’ve heard some evidence to suggest a small number of lenders are showing preference for CMHC insurance, which is 100% backed by the government. In the unlikely event of insolvancy, Genworth and AIG have only 90% backing. Investors know this, making it hard for some lenders to sell off (securitize) non-CMHC insured mortgages for top dollar.
  • First National has tightened its debt service guidelines for rental properties. See your BDM for details.
  • Merix has suspended its “No Frills” and “Quick Close” products.  (Update:  They’re back as of October 20)
  • CMHC’s new high-ratio guidelines require at least one borrower to have a 600 credit score. That means co-applicants can have scores under 600 if allowed by the lender.
  • The MBABC will now promote CAAMP‘s AMP designation to its members. In return, CAAMP will give MBABC a “monetary contribution to be used for the promotion of the AMP designation” in the province of BC.
  • TD has ended its 5% cash back down payment mortgage.
  • First National has terminated its Flex Down Cashback mortgages.  They’ll still offer cash back mortgages, but the borrower won’t be able to use the cash for the downpayment.
  • CAAMP now has it’s Mortgage Journal magazine online.
  • CAAMP’s early-bird discount for the 2008 Mortgage Expo ends Friday. The following lenders permit use of their points to buy admission: FirstLine Points, First National LP Wizard Spending, MCAP MSA, Merix X Rewards, Mortgage Intelligence IPS, ResMor Advantage Club Dollars, Street Capital Street Rewards
  • Xceed has launched its new Prestige Broker Program with six levels of volume and funding-ratio based incentives–some quite attractive.
  • HSBC has suspended its 5-year open variable mortgage.
  • Scotiabank has suspended its 5-year open variable mortgage.