Posts Tagged ‘Buying a Home’

5 Government Programs that help Home Buyers in Ontario

February 4, 2016 Leave a comment

ontario programs home buyers

There are a number of programs available from both the provincial and the federal government, which provide help for home buyers in Ontario. Each of these can help you to save money, either directly, or when you file your tax return. Here are 5 helpful programs which can save you money:


Ontario Energy and Property Tax Credit

This is a tax credit that helps low to moderate income individuals with property taxes and the sales tax on energy expenses. The credit is part of the Ontario Trillium Benefit and refunded on your tax return.


Home Buyers Tax Credit (HBTC)

This is a tax credit for first time buyers which reimburses a portion of closing costs. The credit is refunded on your tax return.  The max is $750.


Ontario Healthy Homes Renovation Tax Credit

ontario healthy homes credit

This tax credit benefits seniors and can help them with the renovation costs to improve safety and accessibility in the home. Seniors are eligible for up to 15% back when they spend a max of 10,000 on home renovations.  Amounts are refunded on your tax return.


Home Buyers Plan (HBP)

First time home buyers can withdraw up to $25,000 from their RSP’s tax free to use towards down payment and closing costs when buying a home.


GST/HST New Residential Rental Property Rebate

This rebate is for purchasers of a newly constructed home for use as a rental property and GST/HST was payable at closing. As a landlord, you are eligible to receive most of it back by filling out an application and mailing it in.

We hope you find these programs useful. With thanks to Sherry Love, Home Financing Advisor at Scotiabank Mississauga, for her expert input. You can reach Sherry at (416) 908-8563.

Got questions about home financing? You can equip yourself with all the latest money saving tips, by clicking here. Get all the answers to help you with the purchase of your next home.


CityGate Condos – Mississauga

August 10, 2013 Leave a comment

CityGate condos, located at 3939 Duke of York Blvd in Mississauga,  was the first tower to be built in the Square One area by Toronto developer Davies-Smith. This 34 storey point tower won several awards for its architecture, and today is a popular and sought after address for Mississauga condo dwellers. CityGate has gained a reputation as a well run building, with excellent facilities, location, and solid real estate activity in both sales and rentals.

CityGate condos

CityGate condos

CityGate was the first condominium tower to offer loft residences in Mississauga, in addition to regular apartments, and it also offers a generous array of amenities – 24 hour concierge, swimming pool, sauna, hot tub, yoga and gym rooms, party room, and a rooftop deck area on the podium which has BBQ facilities, to name just a few.

As part of my ongoing series of profiles of popular Mississauga condos, I have compiled a full review of CityGate’s first tower here:

My review covers prices, history and features of the property, walk score, and much more. See my main site for the full article on CityGate condos.

Eve Condos – Mississauga

June 22, 2013 1 comment

Eve condos were the second tower to be completed in the Mississauga Square One area by Amacon Corporation of Vancouver. Together with its sister towers of Eden Park and Elle, Eve features attractive modernist architecture, standing 32 storeys tall. Municipal address for Eve is 3515 Kariya Drive.

Eve Condo Mississauga

Eve Condo Mississauga

Eve, like its sister towers Eden Park and Elle, is blessed with a terrific location in the heart of the City of Mississauga, only steps away from the massive Square One shopping mall, dining, entertainment, parks, good schools, and public transit. The amenities in the condo itself include indoor swimming pool, hot tub, spa, gymnasium, exercise room, BBQ pit areas, and a children’s play area. Further details for Eve Condo’s amenities can be found at

For a full profile and review of this fine condominium, see my main site here – Eve Condos Mississauga.

Eden Park Condos – Mississauga

June 11, 2013 2 comments

Eden Park Condos are a fairly recent addition to the Square One area of Mississauga.  Located  at 3504 Hurontario Street, this luxury high rise condominium was built by Amacon Corporation of Vancouver, B.C. Eden Park was completed in 2006, and stands 33 storeys tall.  It’s a popular project due to its high end finishes, and its excellent location for transit, schools, and shopping.

Eden Park condo Mississauga

Eden Park condo Mississauga

Eden Park features a mix of 1,  2, and 3 bedroom suites, and a highlight of the amenities is the 40 foot indoor swimming pool.

For a comprehensive look at what that this wonderful condo has to offer, with additional information on amenities, selling and rental prices, walking score and much more, check out the feature article – Eden Park Condos – at my main site.

Canadian Mortgage Rules Are Changing

January 17, 2011 Leave a comment

Jim Flaherty, Canada’s Finance Minister, announced  changes to mortgage lending rules today which will have an effect on the Canadian real estate market. 

In announcing the changes, Mr. Flaherty lauded Canada’s well-regulated housing industry, and noted that the real estate market has been an important strength in the Canadian economy. Canada’s relatively conservative banking rules have allowed the country to avoid the mistakes of other nations and have helped protect Canadians from the worst of the recent global recession….
There are three basic changes under the new rules, which take effect on March 18, 2011:

1.)  the maximum amortization period for new government-backed insured mortgages will be reduced from 35 to 30 years.

2.) the maximum amount Canadians can borrow to refinance their mortgages will be lowered to 85% per cent from the current 90% per cent.

3.) The government will withdraw its insurance backing on lines of credit secured on homes, such as home equity lines of credit. (not in force until April 18, 2011)

These changes will take effect on March 18, 2011. Overall this is not bad compared to what had been speculated. The one which will have the greatest effect is the lower amortization period, as it reduces borrowing power by the purchaser.

If you are a buyer, or are considering refinancing your home, it is probably a good idea to speak to your mortgage professional asap.

What Are 50/50 Mortgages?

January 7, 2011 Leave a comment

There’s something new on the Canadian mortgage scene – hybrid mortgages – also known as 50/50 mortgages – they include an equal mix of fixed-rate and variable-rate components within a single mortgage. This means you get the best of both worlds – the security of fixed repayments with the flexibility and lower cost of a variable rate.

Although in recent times, most mortgage experts have considered a variable rate mortgage as the obvious choice to save consumers money over the long term, with fixed rates remaining near historic lows, a 50/50 mortgage may be something to consider.

In a nutshell, since it’s extremely difficult to accurately predict rates over the long term, a 50/50 mortgage offers interest rate diversification, which can help reduce your level of risk.

If you opt for a  50/50 Balanced Mortgage, half of your mortgage is locked into a five-year fixed rate and half is at a five-year variable rate. You can lock in your variable-rate portion at any time without paying a penalty. As well, each portion of the 50/50 mortgage operates independently – like two separate mortgages – yet the product is registered as only one collateral charge.

The 50/50 mortgage product is well-suited to a variety of borrowers, including those who:

  • Would normally go fully variable but are afraid prime rate is at its bottom
  • Aren’t comfortable being locked into a fully fixed rate
  • Can’t decide between a fixed or variable mortgage

Some features of the 50/50 mortgage include:

  • 20% annual lump-sum pre-payment privileges
  • 20% annual payment increase ability 
  • Portability (the option to transfer your existing loan amount to a new property without penalty)

This information is courtesy of Sarah Makhomet,  my good friend and expert mortgage broker at Dominion Lending. As always, if you have questions about the 50/50 mortgage product and whether it’s right for you, or any other mortgage-related questions, we welcome your comments!

Simple Guide to CMHC New Mortgage Rules April 2010

April 6, 2010 2 comments

Created a summary “In Plain English” of the new rules from CMHC pertaining to mortgage loan approval in Canada….these new rules will  affect all home buyers across Canada, but especially self employed people, as well as commission sales people….link to my Simple Guide to CMHC New Rules April 2010……..

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