The use of social media to gather mortgage information is increasing, with three in 10 consumers using social platforms to get advice, according to a comprehensive Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) survey released June 7.
Some 29 per cent of respondents said they use social media to get mortgage information, compared with 20 per cent in the 2015 survey. Of these people, the most popular platforms they visit for such information are Facebook (53 per cent), YouTube (30 per cent) and online forums (27 per cent).
Unsurprisingly, CMHC found the use of social media to gather mortgage information to be higher among consumers aged under 35 years (45 per cent) and lower among older consumers (13 per cent of 55- to 64-year-olds, and 10 per cent of those aged 65 or more).
The CMHC also found that large numbers of Canadians are searching online for mortgage information. It found that 72 per cent of consumers use the internet to research their mortgage options. Of these, 55 per cent looked at mortgage lender websites, 25 per cent used broker websites and 15 per cent used both.
However, only 27 per cent of those going online said they use mobile technology for research purposes.
The CMHC added in its report, “When looking for lender and broker websites, about three-quarters of mortgage consumers used an internet search engine, such as Google (77 per cent for lender sites and 74 per cent for broker sites).”
The survey found that first-time buyers looking for a mortgage tend to seek advice from a number of different sources. These include family and friends (64 per cent), real estate agents (64 per cent), real estate lawyers (58 per cent) and mortgage lenders (56 per cent).
Surprisingly, mortgage brokers were consulted by the lowest proportion, with only 43 per cent of first-time buyers saying they are consulting or have consulted a mortgage broker prior to getting a mortgage.
“Understanding the way active Canadian mortgage consumers behave and what they are looking for allows mortgage professionals to provide better service and improve the overall customer experience,” said Nathalie Fredette, vice-president, Client Relationship Management at CMHC.
To see the full results and infographics from the 2016 CMHC Mortgage Consumer Survey, click here.