It’s March, 2012. How will you look back at this month in 5 years time? There are certain dates in history that stand out for all of us. Some are more personal than others, like the birth of my son, the day I met my wife, my first trip overseas, NHL pro hockey camp, etc.
And then there are dates where I look back at missed opportunities.
-October 1984, I had a chance to buy a waterfront lot on Balsam Lake in Ontario’s cottage country, for $22,000…. now selling for $400,000. There was a new condo in east Toronto for $82,000 in September 1987…. now selling for $392,000….(and yes, I think I was 5 years old…Lol!)..
-Or how about that semi-detached house at Danforth Ave and Woodbine, in Toronto, for $175,000 in 1990….now selling for $500,000. More recently, I could have bought a house for $320,000 in 2005, near the water in Burlington, Ontario…..that same house sold for $800,000 last year.
The point it, I think we will look back at March 2012 as the month when the Banks declared mortgage war against each other… Only in this war, there is a winner… YOU, the consumer, YOU the borrower, YOU the investor. We are seeing record low mortgage rates. And they won’t last forever. In fact, this mortgage war is probably going to accelerate interest rate hikes… almost like starting a campfire with gasoline soaked wood… It’s burning red hot but it won’t last for long.
With interest rates are record lows, isn’t this the time to borrow? A $300,000 mortgage will carry for $1196/mth.. and that’s with a 5 year fixed rate term. Bond yields are climbing… 5 yr bond yields are up to 1.71%.. that’s up 30bps in less than a month… 5 year fixed rates follow bond movement… i think it’s safe to say, we should expect rates to climb in the near future… and the reason they haven’t moved yet is because of the Mortgage wars…
We are hearing the cries by the govt and some bankers, telling us not to borrow too much. Personal Debt level concerns are plastered all over the internet and media. But we aren’t seeing many articles telling us how to borrow and invest wisely…. borrow when rates are low instead of borrowing when rates are high… borrow when you qualify instead of borrowing when you don’t… borrow when you don’t need the money… Isn’t that when Banks want to lend you the money?
We have just seen a draft guideline, Bill B-20, entered in for review with a May 1st decision date. These new regulations are aimed at tightening lending rules even further.. and this time it’s targeting Home Equity Lines of Credit.. That’s right, they want to make it even harder to qualify for these products and possibly make the repayment terms more strict…
Opportunity is knocking… answer the door..