Five Hottest Mortgage Stories of 2014
December 23, 2014

has assembled a crack team of expert mortgage advisers, writing on everything you could ever need to know about financing your home – and more besides. Here are our five most-read stories in our Mortgages section this year.

1. The Big Catch in the Five-Year Fixed Mortgage

It seems that the five-year fixed rate is the Holy Grail of mortgages that everybody wants to secure. We are assured of a reasonable rate, steady payments, long-term peace of mind… But is a five-year fixed mortgage really right for you, or is public perception merely convincing you this is the case?

In the most popular story in our Mortgages section this year, mortgage broker Dustan Woodhouse warms that many five-year products have a major flaw for most people.

2. Self-employed? How to Qualify for a Mortgage

If you’re among the 2.7 million Canadians who are self-employed, then your income may not be as easily documented as someone who’s traditionally employed. Since 2008, mortgage regulations in the US and Canada have made it more challenging for those who work for themselves to qualify for a mortgage due to tighter restrictions on “stated income” loans.

Atrina Kouroshnia of Lava Rates explains what you need to know about income verification and documentation for self-employed borrowers.

3. Mortgage Interest Rates – Whither Do They Go?

The one question that real estate investment guru Ozzie Jurock is most often asked is: “When are interest rates are going to rise?”

To find the answer to this question, Ozzie explains that you have to take a larger look at the mad financial world we live in. In his second exclusive article for, he sticks his neck out to predict where interests rates will go and whether you should lock in your mortgage rate.

4. Why You Can't Afford Not to Use a Mortgage Broker

Buying BC real estate can be expensive. Vancouver has some of the highest real estate prices in North America, plus you may need to consider the added cost of legal fees, appraisal fees, GST (if it's a new property) and property transfer tax. Fortunately, one cost you likely won't need to factor into your budget is using the services of a mortgage broker, as they are paid for by the lender, not the client.

Despite being free to the home buyer, independent mortgage broker services offer plenty of valuable benefits and can save you huge sums of money. Atrina Kouroshnia of Lava Rates explains a few areas where a mortgage broker can be invaluable.

5. Why It Pays to Shop Around at Mortgage Renewal Time

While most Canadians spend a lot of time and effort in shopping for their initial mortgage, the same is generally not the case when looking at mortgage term renewals. Most people negotiate when it comes to cell phone contracts, travel deals or simply driving a few extra kilometres to save a couple cents on gas.

But when it comes to banking and renewing their mortgage, most people are complacent, happy to get something that is OK but not the best deal that they could get. Existing customers assume they will get the best deal because of their loyalty and don’t bother to shop around at renewal time – but this is rarely true. Here, mortgage and financing experts Jorge and Alisa Aragon explain that customers who simply renew with their current lender miss out on saving themselves huge sums.