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Mortgage renewals

Region: Ontario Answer # 412

Mortgage renewal occurs at the end of each mortgage loan term, unless the mortgage has been paid in full. Depending on the type of mortgage loan you select, terms generally range from six months to five years. Renewing your mortgage loan can be done with your existing lender, or elsewhere if you prefer the services and interest rate of another financial institution.

The main issue when you renew your mortgage loan is the interest rate, so you may want to consider your options with other lenders to find the best arrangement. Although your existing lender may charge you a fee to switch your mortgage to another lender, you may be able to negotiate with your new lender for the fee to be covered. In any event, make sure you begin the process of switching your mortgage loan at least 60 days before the expiry of your term to give yourself enough time to make the necessary arrangements.

Mortgage stress test

In January 2018, the Government of Canada’s Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) amended the mortgage rules introduced in 2016 that require Canadian home buyers to take a mortgage stress test to qualify for a mortgage at a bank. Previously, this test was only required to approve buyers who had a down payment of less than 20% and required mortgage loan insurance. Now all buyers, including those with a down payment greater than 20% who do not require the default loan insurance must take a mortgage stress test.

The new stress test does not apply to mortgage renewals, as long as they are with the borrower’s existing lender. However, if you want to move your mortgage to a different lender, a stress test must be applied. For more information on the mortgage stress test, view What mortgage loan amount can you qualify for? Stress Test. More information about mortgages is available from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

If you are buying a home and want to know how much of a mortgage you qualify for, use the Scotiabank mortgage calculator .

Get help from a life insurance advisor

Understanding life insurance and what is best for you can be overwhelming. It is important to get professional advice for your unique situation, and it is more affordable than you think. Life insurance can protect your family, your home and your business.  For a free consultation and quote, contact an Empire Life Insurance advisor.

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