Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

June 22, 2011 08:15 ET

CMHC Survey Shows Homebuyers Taking the Time to Plan

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - June 22, 2011) - Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) released its 2011 Mortgage Consumer Survey today providing insight into the attitudes and behaviours of Canadian mortgage consumers.

The survey found that the internet continues to be a valuable resource for homebuyers. Among recent buyers using an online search engine, the most popular search terms included interest rates (86%), mortgage options (76%) and mortgage calculators (69%). Of those who noted using the internet during their research, 86% used an on-line mortgage calculator, 56% printed information, 54% did a financial self assessment and 50% researched other financial products.

Results also showed that Canadians take, on average, 11 months to plan their purchase while the majority of homebuyers (88%) indicated they had a good sense of how much mortgage they could afford before purchasing a home.

"Buying a home is one of the biggest financial decisions most Canadians will make in their lifetimes" stated Pierre Serré, Vice President, Insurance Product and Business Development. "CMHC is committed to supporting homebuyers throughout their decision making process."

As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC offers a number of online tools, such as the Household Budget and Mortgage Affordability Calculators, and publications, such as Homebuying Step-by-Step, to support Canadian homeowners and homebuyers as they pursue their housing goals.

"Through our online calculators and resources, CMHC will continue to support Canadians in the making of informed and responsible home buying decisions" noted Serré.

The survey also found that three-quarters (75%) of recent homebuyers felt it is very important to pay-off their mortgage as soon as possible while many have already taken steps to do so. Almost four-in-ten (39%) recent buyers have their mortgage payment set higher than the minimum required while 20% have made a lump-sum payment since taking out their mortgage.

Further, most home buyers (80%), to some extent, follow a household budget and when establishing their budgets assessed to some degree, the impact of rising interest rates (71%), the impact of a loss of income (69%) and the impact of rising expenses (79%). Moreover, 81% of recent buyers have set aside money in some form of additional savings.

However, opportunities exist to enhance the service and education provided to mortgage consumers. The survey also showed that during their mortgage research 23% of first time buyers received advice on budgeting while 18% received advice on managing debt. In addition, the survey found that one in four (25%) recent buyers is not sure where to go to receive reliable advice in case of financial difficulty.

About the Survey

The on-line survey, which polled more than 3,500 active mortgage consumers who undertook a mortgage transaction within the previous 12 months, asked participants a series of questions designed to gauge their attitudes and sentiments. The survey has been conducted since 1999.

As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 65 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of high quality, environmentally sustainable, and affordable housing solutions that will continue to create vibrant and healthy communities and cities across the country.

For complete details of CMHC's 2011 Mortgage Consumer Survey please visit http://www.cmhc.ca/en/hoficlincl/moloin/cosu/index.cfm

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