A guide to the mortgage market in Canada

Houses for sale in Ottawa

“What really sparked things to turn back higher was the pause after January, and people got a little more confident that rates were going to be steady for a while, the push higher was over, and they could have a bit of confidence in that, and I think that brought a fair amount of people back into the market.”

Reitzes added: “You still have that underlying demand, demographics are still good, and immigration is still going to drive demand there. So, it’s not as if housing is going to fall off a cliff anytime soon here. But the rebound that we’ve seen might run a little bit out of steam here.”

Since it was first recorded in 1935, Canada’s mortgage rate hit an all-time high of 20.03% in August 1981. The Bank of Canada’s lowest ever rate was 0.25%, for just under two years during the COVID-19 pandemic. The longest period that the prime mortgage rate remained unchanged at 3.0% was between September 2010 and January 2015.

The prime rate in Canada is the benchmark rate set by the banks using the Bank of Canada’s rates as their base point for changing their mortgage interest rates. The largest increase in the prime interest rate in Canada, since the introduction of inflation targeting in 1991, was 4.25%. In 1935, the rate was 2.5%. As of December 2022, the prime rate was 6.95%, which was in increase of 4.5% since March 2020.

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