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10 Things Canadian Homebuyers Need to Know

  • How to better understand your Mortgage, potentially saving you thousands
  • The importance of pre-approval
  • Tips/Tricks/Techniques – How to pay off your Mortgage fast
  • Details! Down payment sources, rental suites… and more!

First Time Home Buyer Incentive Program (FTHBI)

Effective September 2, 2019, the Government of Canada introduced the First Time Home Buyer Incentive (FTHBI) to help qualified First Time Home Buyers (FTHB) purchase a home, making homeownership more affordable by reducing their monthly mortgage payment without increasing their down payment.

The FTHBI is considered a Shared Equity Mortgage (SEM) where the Government of Canada has a shared interest in the borrower’s property value. This program is available through the default insurers; Canada Mortgage Housing Corporation (CMHC), Genworth and Canada Guaranty.  Borrowers will receive an incentive in the form of an interest-free loan towards their down payment:

5% for the purchase of a resale property OR

5% or 10% for the purchase of a new construction home

Program Eligibility

  • The borrower must be a Canadian Citizen, Permanent Resident or Non-Permanent Resident who is legally authorized to work in Canada.
  • At least one borrower must be considered a FTHB based on the qualifying criteria.
  • Property must be owner occupied and located in Canada.
  • Borrowers must contribute the minimum required down payment from traditional sources.
  • Default insurance premiums will be calculated based on the purchase price less the borrower’s own down payment and the FTHBI amounts.
  • The loan has no monthly payment. Repayment amount will be based on fair market value to be determined at the time of repayment.

Repayment will be required when the property is sold or at the end of the 25-year term, whichever happens earlier.

Voluntary repayment of the full incentive can be made without any prepayment penalties.

Application Process Requirements

  • In addition to the signed privacy agreement and credit application, customer must provide a signed original or signed copy of the ‘FTHBI Program Attestation, Consent and Privacy Notice’ at the time of application. This form can be found on the FTHBI website.
  • Application must be submitted on or after September 2, 2019, and the closing date must be on or after November 1, 2019.

Only High Ratio mortgages (greater than 80% Loan-to-Value) are eligible and the borrower’s annual qualifying household income does not exceed $120,000.

The combined mortgage loan amount and incentive cannot exceed four times the total annual qualifying income. To verify this, colleagues can use the Government of Canada’s online calculator tool.

Brokers will indicate in their comments to underwriters that this is a FTHBI 5% or 10% submission when coding the Down Payment under ‘Other’.

If additional details of the program are required, you can call the Government of Canada at 1-877-884-2642 or visit the website at  https://www.placetocallhome.ca/fthbi/first-time-homebuyer-incentive.