New mortgage rules could hit Calgary market, and reduce temptation of debt

One specialist worries new mortgage rules could make things more difficult for some Calgarians, but still argues the changes are prudent.

Increase in down payment minimum could provide another blow in economic downturn, but also help curb debt

Calgary's housing market could take a hit from new federal mortgage rules according to Peter Kinch, but they could also help steer buyers to more affordable decisions. (Robson Fletcher/CBC)

One specialist worries new mortgage rules could make things more difficult for some Calgarians, but still argues the changes are prudent. 

As of Feb. 15, would-be homeowners across Canada now have to cough up a 10 per cent down payment on homes over $500,000, up from five per cent.

"When you look at Calgary, four per cent of the market will be impacted," said mortgage specialist Peter Kinch. 

"In the normal market, you look at Alberta over the last 10 years, the impact would be negligible. However, Calgary is suffering right now, let's face it, and the last thing they need is one more straw to put on that pile."

Kinch says the new rules put more of a burden on Calgary home buyers when it's other Canadian cities that have greater mortgage debt issues.

The intent of the federal move is to minimize household debt and to help cool off overheated markets like Vancouver and Toronto.

Despite his apprehension, Kinch does say the rule change is prudent and will help steer people towards purchases they can afford. 

Homes below $500,000 still only require a five per cent down payment. 


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