2 Jul

Weekly mortgage update for Owen Sound


Posted by: Brian Mill

Today, the last Friday in June is typically the busiest closing day of the year.  Many agents I’ve spoken with say they have had a good June, and this past week has actually been fairly busy for new purchases.  I know my phone has been ringing all week and most of it new deals.  The interest rate hikes seem to have spurred on some activity, but has caught others off guard.  At least a couple people I’ve spoken with were surprised to hear that 3.19% is the best rate out there…..they all said “I thought rates were around 2.89%”.  My response is….yes they were….2 weeks ago. 


Many lenders have hiked rates significantly and I wouldn’t hesitate to guess the average rate is 3.39% to 3.59% on a 5 year fixed, although one or two I think are holding on to 3.19% for the weekend.  The best deal right now is a 10 year at 3.69%.  Despite all the movement in the 5 year and shorter rates, 10 year rates haven’t spiked as much.  That being said…..we’re told that on Tuesday the 10 year 3.69% deal will disappear and be more like 3.99%.  This is still a pretty good deal, however if you, or any of your clients want to take advantage of this deal call me anytime this weekend. 


“Did you know”……Interest rates have spiked and here is why.  Two things. The U.S. Fed announcement that they were considering scaling back their financial stimulus ($85 Billion a month) sometime in 2014. Secondly, there has been concerning news on money tightening in China. The markets immediately reacted by dumping bonds and subsequently the rate increases. A lot of experts have said this is an emotional reaction and will level out. Time will tell.  I know this isn’t my most exciting topic ever, however my goal is to keep my referral sources educated on what’s happening and why in the mortgage industry.  Hopefully this helped clear up the reasoning behind the spike in the middle of summer. 


I’ll be in town part of the weekend and camping for the other part, however as usual my phone will be with me and I am always available for new business!  Feel free to call me anytime and if I don’t happen to pick up just leave a message and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.


Have a great long weekend and Happy Canada Day! 

28 May

Mortgage and real estate review May 24th, 2013


Posted by: Brian Mill

Most agents are quite happy with the amount of activity these days and hopefully this pace will keep up for a while yet.  There are offers flying all over the place according to the offices I’ve been in this week and personally I’d agree…..preapprovals are down but real deals are up! 


Interest rates, with SOME lenders went up a smidge this week (5-10bps) but others are holding on to retain market share.  I’m still doing a 5 year fixed at 2.79% (for the right client and right deal).  What pleases me most is that 2 deals this week came from clients who were not happy with the service and rates from their own banks and chose to deal with me!  I’m sure anyone on commission likes to feel that they’re doing a better job than their competitors! 


“Did you know”….that cottage properties can be bought with as little as 5% down, the same as a principal residence?  In fact, cottages are treated the same as principal residences by lenders and have the same qualifying criteria.  As long as you can make the payments, you’re good to go.  Challenges often arise with cottage properties due to irregularities such as no central heating sources, not winterized, not on a cement pad or foundation (on blocks!), water source not from a well etc.  In each of these cases I have lenders who will consider these types of properties under a “Type B” dwelling which allows a more relaxed set of guidelines for the property, in exchange for a small premium in rates.  Clients often get mis-advised when it comes to cottage properties and could often use a “second” opinion to make sure they’re using the best strategy when buying a secondary property.


I would be happy to discuss this in further with you or your clients so call or email me anytime. 


Don’t forget about my gas card promotion!  I’ve received a lot of referrals in the past couple weeks (I’ll have to pay out $550 in gas cards) so keep the referrals coming.  If you are not comfortable with receiving the gas card personally I’ll gladly give it to your client on behalf of both of us. 

19 Apr

Mortgage and real estate review April 20th 2013


Posted by: Brian Mill

Now that the snow is gone and the weather is starting to feel a “bit” like spring, activity is really picking up.  2 weeks ago I had one of the busiest weeks I’ve ever had for preapprovals and now the offers are starting to fly.  I have had 2 actual deals fall apart due to sellers who were unwilling to budge on their price, and I’m not sure if this is a trend or just a coincidence.  Hopefully we don’t have a market full of overpriced listings and unrealistic sellers. 


No change on the interest rate front.  I can still to 2.84% and 2.89% on a rental property so if you have anyone looking at buying rentals, make sure they talk to me.  More and more lenders are adding premiums on rates on rental properties as they are inherently a bit riskier than a principal residence.  I can help your clients sift through the myriad of things to consider when buying and mortgaging a rental property.


Did you know? Collateral mortgage charges have become a hot topic recently as some lenders have changed their policies and ALL of their mortgages are done on a “collateral charge” as opposed to a “conventional charge”.  The advantage to a collateral charge is the ability to re-advance funds up to 80% loan to value after the mortgage has been paid down below this level and/or have a line of credit or other revolving credit secured by your residence.  The disadvantage is that on renewal, if you were to switch your mortgage to another lender, the mortgage actually has to be discharged from the title and another mortgage put in its place, meaning a set of legal fees to do this.  One of the major banks was on Marketplace (The TV show on Sunday AM at 10:30 on CBC) recently as they have been doing this and not disclosing to their clients that they would have to discharge the entire mortgage to switch it out.  These lenders are using this as a “retention” tool instead of for its other uses since it is much harder to switch out on renewal.  Contact me for information on who does this and who to watch out for!


Please feel free to call me anytime this weekend at 519 379 3003…..I will be happy to answer any questions or speak with your clients directly.




Brian Mill, B.A.

12 Apr

Mortgage and real estate review April 12th 2013


Posted by: Brian Mill

The weather is doing its best to hold off the spring market as long as possible, however most agents I’ve been in contact with this week are saying activity is picking up.  There are buyers out there looking but they’re not acting very fast.  A colleague of mine in Barrie is saying that their inventory is down so they are seeing multiple offers on everything and that final prices are often well above asking prices.  Once the sun comes out I think we’ll see a significant improvement in offer activity.


Interest rates are still at the amazing low rates….most clients are sticking with a fixed rate mortgage of either 5  or 10 years.  I think I’ve only done 2 variable rate mortgages in the past year and that was specifically due to the 3 month penalty if the clients were to break their mortgage within 5 years.  The beauty with the extremely low 5 year rates is that even without the 30-40 year amortizations we had in the past few years, clients are still able to qualify for houses that they never thought they could have. 


I’m going to start a new weekly feature that will hopefully keep you informed of some of the products or rates that are available and might just help you gain a sale if you were to inform your clients.  I’m going to call it my “Did you know” and it will simply be part of my week in review emails. 


Did you know?  35 year amortizations are still available on CONVENTIONAL deals through some of my lenders?  I had a situation last week where a client was buying a duplex to live in and had 20% down, but had been declined by her bank as the ratios were too tight.  Her own bank only had 25 year amortization available even on conventional deals, however I was able to put the mortgage together using a 35 year amortization through another lender. 


My hockey pool with Dominion Lending Centres is gaining a lot of buzz around the area.  Registration starts Monday and you could win $10 000 or one of many other prizes totalling over $25000, and you get to play against Don Cherry.  Simply go to www.brianmill.ca and watch the video for more details. 


This weekend I’ll be cheering on the Attack and watching the Masters so feel free to call me anytime with questions or referrals. 




Brian Mill

8 Mar

Real estate and mortgage weekly update March 8th


Posted by: Brian Mill

By most accounts things are fairly active in our local real estate market.  I’ve spoken with several realtors this week who are pleasantly surprised by the number of clients that are coming out of the woodwork.  I’m hoping this is just the tip of the iceburg as the snow is melting and it’s beginning to feel like spring!


I really didn’t think rates could go any lower however the interest rate market is breaking new ground.  For the first time ever I can actually advertise 2.79% on a 5 year fixed rate mortgage!  This is crazy!  I don’t know why people aren’t climbing over each other to get this rate!  Seriously though…..this is a full service 5 year fixed rate mortgage with prepayment options and all.  Call if you have questions.


This could be my last weekend of hockey hockey hockey, so I’m going to enjoy it!  As usual I will have my phone with me so feel free to call or email me anytime. 

28 Feb

Mortgage and real estate review


Posted by: Brian Mill

It seems that many of my realtor partners have either been away, are away right now or are going away soon.  Looking outside that seems like a great idea and from what I’ve heard the activity out there is still decent.  Most agents I have spoken with are working with buyers however the buyers aren’t in a big rush right now which is no surprise.  Buyers seem to be waiting for the spring market which will obviously bring more listings, but likely higher demand and prices too. 


Interest rates are still at record lows and unbelievably seem to be inching lower.  I can now get 2.89% on a 5 year fixed which is unbelievable, but who knows how long we’ll be able to get this.  Urge your clients to get off the fence and take these rates while they can.  Statistics show that fixed rates usually rise in the spring along with demand and there us rarely any warning.  A couple of years ago rates rose almost an entire percent in 1 month (from March 30th to April 30th).  This can happen again and it could be an effective selling tool to make sure your potential buyers know about this. 


I have a few options for getting around no downpayment issues for qualified buyers.  Call or email me if you have a situation like this and I’ll be glad to help out. 


This weekend I’ll be around town and available to meet with you or your potential clients if needed.  Call or email me anytime.

15 Feb

Weekly real estate and mortgage update


Posted by: Brian Mill

By most accounts the weather has finally gotten hold of the local real estate market and while it hasn’t completely stopped, it’s definitely not as brisk as it was in January. Many agents I’ve been in touch with this week are still actively working on new deals, however it is very apparent that every deal is getting a lot of attention since at this time of year, every deal is important! 


Interest rates are still extremely low and not showing any indication of moving, however that typically is the case in the spring…..rates move up along with demand for money.  If you have any clients who are sitting on the fence about buying this might make the difference.  I can easily get 2.94% these days on a quick close high ratio mortgage, which would fit the bill for most first time home buyers.  I would appreciate any opportunities to preapprove your clients so feel free to forward this email along to anyone you think might benefit from speaking with me. 


This weekend is a mix of hockey and a variety of other family fun for my wife, son and I.  My phone will be with me all weekend so please feel free to call me or shoot me an email if you’d like me to speak with your clients directly.


Have a great family day weekend! 


8 Feb

Real estate and mortgage weekly update Feb 8


Posted by: Brian Mill

We’re into another blast of winter and this time it seems that purchasers have finally said enough and things have slowed down a bit.  Many agents say they’re still going on listing appointments so hopefully in a few weeks we’ll have lots of inventory for these buyers to choose from, but not “too much inventory”. 


Interest rates remain unchanged and at record low levels.  Refinances seem to be the hot item right now as people are taking advantage of these low rates to consolidate debt and get their finances back in shape.  I can still get 2.94% on a 5 year fixed and 2.65% on a variable, however most people are sticking with the fixed rate mortgages.  If you or any of your friends/family/neighbours are considering a refinance or have a mortgage coming due, please put them in touch with me.  I give my clients the best rate up front and don’t make them haggle so we can focus on getting the right product and solution for them.  My financial planning knowledge also helps me give advice to my clients that not every mortgage agent can offer.


I will be around all weekend with shovel in hand so call or email me anytime.  This would normally be my annual ice fishing weekend with “the guys” however being the coach of my son’s team I will be hanging around ice rinks all weekend instead of an ice hut.  I’m sure the fish in the lakes around North Bay are breathing a sigh of relief that I’m not going this year!  (J)

1 Feb

Real estate and mortgage weekly update Feb 1


Posted by: Brian Mill

We have seen some wild fluctuations in the weather this week however the real estate and mortgage market seems to keep chugging along at a pretty decent pace given the time of year.  Many agents I’ve been in touch with this week say they’re going on lots of listing appointments and showing a reasonable amount of homes too.  Offers are coming together too, however I’ve seen a few that are challenging at best.  It seems people have been preapproved by lenders only to find out that their preapproval didn’t hold water due to either undisclosed facts or the lender not actually digging deep enough to get all of the facts. 


Interest rates are still at record low rates and many people are starting to act on refinancing their homes after they have seen what savings can be had but doing so.  If you, any of your current clients or friends and family would like to run the numbers to see if it makes sense to do so, please call or email me anytime.  I can honestly say that I personally did this last year and it was the smartest thing I’ve done in a while (since becoming a broker!).


This weekend I’ll be getting caught up on some work around the house as we only have one game on the road!  Call or email me anytime if you have a question or would like me to speak to your clients. 

25 Jan

Real estate and mortgage weekly update


Posted by: Brian Mill

This was by far the most “wintery” week we’ve had in a long time, however it doesn’t appear to have slowed the market down at all.  Most agents still are saying there is a reasonable amount of activity out there.  Many said they’ve been busy with listing appointments and many have been also showing properties.  Who knows why it is this active for the deep freeze in the middle of January, but I’m sure going to take advantage of it!


Interest rates are still low and steady with no change in the federal prime rate this week.  Many of my inquiries the past month or so from potential clients have been about refinancing an existing mortgage, before renewal in order to take advantage of lower interest rates.  In most situations it makes sense however it all boils down to how long our rates are going to stay low.  Most people are willing to pay a bit to break their existing 3.50%-4.50% mortgage in order to guarantee 2.99% for the next 5 years.  Many have been keeping their payments the same as they were before, but working hard on paying down the principal by shortening the amortization.  If you or anyone you know would like to run numbers based on your own situation, I’m just a phone call away. 


No surprises this weekend for my “schedule”……hockey hockey hockey.  I will welcome the opportunity to speak with you or any of your potential or existing clients so feel free to call me anytime.