Lower rates dominate most Canadians' mortgage shopping preferences

Many Canadians would rather go for non-traditional mortgages if it means getting lower rates

Lower rates dominate most Canadians' mortgage shopping preferences

A majority of Canadians looking for mortgages would opt for non-traditional mortgage channels – for instance, through online – if it means that they would get lower rates, according to a new survey.

In its latest study, Rates.ca found that while 72% of Canadian mortgage shoppers admitted that they still get mortgages in person, nearly one in five respondents would prefer to get mortgages “without talking to people on the phone or in person.”

Another 45% would consider getting mortgages online if it would lead to lower rates, with savings of at least 0.05% to 0.20%.

“Just as we saw with online stock brokerages a few decades ago, a growing segment of borrowers is willing to make their own mortgage decisions online without a banker’s advice,” Rates.ca mortgage editor Rob McLister stated in the survey’s news release.

Fully 75% of respondents consider the best possible rate the most important consideration in getting mortgages, with 47% saying that this factor is their “number one mortgage goal.” Moreover, only 23% said that the lender’s brand name is a factor when considering great rates.

This trend is fuelled by a nagging fear among many Canadians about getting a mortgage in the first place, if the results of a recent analysis by Zillow and Ipsos are any indication.

As much as 92% of those polled by the survey said that they expect at least one barrier to getting their desired homes.

The greatest worries stem from the mortgage process, with 56% saying that qualifying for a mortgage is this barrier. The figure goes up to 64% for those who recently purchased a residential property, stemming from possible changes to mortgage regulations and how said shifts will affect their eventual payments.