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Key Stats from CAAMP’s Fall 2013 Report

CAAMP Fall Report 2013Amortizations are falling, rate discounts are increasing, people have flocked to fixed rates and volumes are down (following the 2012 mortgage rules).

That’s a sampling of the trends highlighted in CAAMP’s just-released Annual State of the Residential Mortgage Market report.

The report contains more mortgage data than virtually any other in Canada. Its data tells an intriguing story of the year that’s about to pass.

Below you’ll find the key points extracted and summarized. If you’re really short on time, check out the Top 10 Stats list. As usual, our comments are in italics.

Top 10 CAAMP Mortgage Stats:

  1. 16%: Share of mortgages on homes purchased in 2013 that had amortizations over 25 years
    • Versus 34%, for homes bought between 2008 and 2010
  2. 8%: Percentage of respondents who believe the housing bubble will burst within the next five years
    (It’s somewhat remarkable that all the media-fuelled crash speculation didn’t make a bigger dent in homebuyer psyche.)
  3. 2.15: Average percentage point discount from “posted rates” for 5-year fixed rate mortgages obtained this year
  4. 82%: Percentage of new mortgages that were fixed rate mortgages—for homes purchased in 2013
    (Variable rates have regained some market share in recent months thanks to a widening fixed-variable spread, variable-friendly economic data and growing skepticism of rate hike predictions.)
  5. 2%: Percentage of buyers with less than 20% down who chose a variable or adjustable rate mortgage (This was surprisingly low. Qualifying rates are likely having an effect here, in addition to a historically tight fixed-variable spread, general risk aversion and suitability considerations.)
  6. 42%: Share of new mortgages in 2013 that were obtained directly from a Canadian bank
    • Down from 47% in 2012
      (This number will obviously not keep dropping by 5 percentage point increments.)
  7. 40%: Share of new mortgages in 2013 that were obtained from a mortgage broker
    • Also down from 47% in 2012
      (These numbers suggest consumers are increasingly using other mortgage providers, like credit unions. That could be a long-term trend fuelled by:

      • Improved ability to reach mortgage shoppers online
      • Regulatory advantages [versus federally-regulated lenders like banks…assuming these advantages hold up], and
      • Federal credit union charters, which support expansion.
    • The rise of credit unions is slowly upon us.
  8. 70%: Percentage of households with mortgages that have 25% or more equity
  9. 57%: Percentage of 2013 homebuyers who were first-time buyers, about 250,000 buyers YTD
    (Few expected an above-average number like this. In recent years, it’s been an accomplishment to see even a low-40%-range first-timers ratio. Most observers [us included] believed a stricter regulatory environment would be a limiting factor for new buyers.)
  10. 5.0%: Decrease in average monthly sales following the government’s 2012 mortgage insurance policy changes.


Other Stats of Note:


  • 84%: Share of mortgages on homes purchased in 2013 that had an original amortization of 25 years or less
    • Up from 78% in 2011/2012
  • 30%: How much faster mortgages have been repaid (versus their original amortization)—applies to mortgages repaid during the past two decades

Lump Sum/Accelerated Payments

  • 16%: Percentage of borrowers who increased the amount of their payments in the past year
    • $400: The average monthly increase
  • 17%: Percentage of borrowers who made a lump sum payment
    • $14,000: The average amount
  • 8%: Percentage of borrowers who have increased their payment frequency in the past year (e.g., gone from monthly payments to accelerated bi-weekly or weekly payments)
  • 38%: Percentage of borrowers who took one or more of these actions
  • 62%: Percentage of borrowers who took none of these actions

Professionals consulted when obtaining current mortgages

  • 69%: Percentage of current mortgage holders who consulted a bank representative about getting a new mortgage
  • 43%: Percentage of current mortgage holders who consulted a mortgage broker about getting a new mortgage (Expect this number to rise for a period of time as consumers more easily interact with brokers online.)

Feelings About Mortgages

  • 17%: Percentage of respondents who strongly agreed with this statement: “I regret taking on the size of mortgage I did”
  • 63%: Percentage of respondents who indicated that they did not regret their mortgage choices
  • 68%: Percentage of respondents who were in agreement that mortgages are “good debt”

Interest Rates

  • 3.50%: The average mortgage interest rate for homeowners’ mortgages
  • 3.23%: The average mortgage interest rate for mortgages on homes purchased in 2013
  • 3.20%: The average mortgage interest rate for mortgages renewed in 2013
    • For these borrowers, their average interest rate is 0.82 percentage points lower than prior to their renewal

Mortgage Discounting

  • 3.06%: The average mortgage interest rate for those with 5-year fixed rates in 2013
  • 3.90%: The highest recorded actual rate
  • 1.3 percentage points: The worst discount off posted rates received by a 5-year fixed borrower in CAAMP’s survey

Variable vs. Fixed Rates

  • 86%: Percentage of borrowers with less than 20% down who chose a fixed rate


  • 46%: The average equity ratio for owners with mortgages but not HELOCs
  • 43%: The average equity ratio for owners with both mortgages and HELOCs
  • 76%: The average equity ratio for owners with HELOCS but without mortgages
  • 83%: Percentage of Canadian homeowners with 25% or more equity
    (This includes people without mortgages.)

Equity Take-Out

  • 11%: Percentage of homeowners who took equity out of their home in the past year
  • $57,000: The average equity take-out amount
    • Up from $49,000 in 2012
  • $59 billion: The estimated amount of total equity take-out in the past year
    • $16.6 billion was used for debt consolidation and repayment
    • $15.1 billion was used for investments
    • $12.3 billion was used for home renovations

Real Estate/Mortgage Market

  • 9.52 million: The number of homeowners in Canada
  • 4.28 million: The number of renters in Canada
  • 5.58 million: The number of homeowners with mortgages (who may also have a HELOC)
  • 3.94 million: The number of homeowners who are mortgage-free
  • 2.3 million: Number of total homeowners who have HELOCs
    (Up 200,000 in the last year, despite tougher qualifications and a lower [65%] loan-to-value limit in 2012.)

Mortgaging Activity

  • 450,000: The number of households that bought homes over the past year
  • 400,000: The number of buyers who took mortgages
  • One-third: Ratio of borrowers who have a HELOC, out of those renewing their mortgage this year

Mortgage Market Outlook

  • 8.6%: Average annual growth of mortgage credit in Canada over the past decade
  • 4.5%: The likely growth rate for all of 2013, estimates CAAMP
  • 10.3%: The decline in the rate of sales since the last mortgage rules took effect in July 2012 (compared to the decade prior)

Study details

The data quoted from this report was commissioned by CAAMP and produced by Will Dunning, Chief economist of CAAMP, in collaboration with Maritz. This report is based on online survey responses from 2,223 Canadians compiled during October 2013. Nearly 60 percent of those surveyed were homeowners with mortgages.

Rob McLister, CMT