Purchase Property

Purchase a House and Getting a Mortgage in Ontario

Purchasing a house is a big decision, especially when it comes to the financial aspects of it. Getting a mortgage can be complicated and overwhelming, especially for first-time homebuyers. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know about buying a house and getting a mortgage in Ontario. From understanding the home-buying process to finding the right mortgage lender, we’ve got you covered.

Understanding the Home-Buying Process

  1. Assess your financial situation
  2. Determine your budget
  3. Find a real estate agent
  4. Start house hunting
  5. Make an offer
  6. Get a home inspection
  7. Close the deal

Assess your financial situation

Before you start the home-buying process, it’s important to assess your financial situation. This includes calculating your current debts and expenses, determining your credit score, and understanding how much you can afford to spend on a home.

Determine your budget

Once you have a clear picture of your finances, it’s time to determine your budget for purchasing a house. This includes factoring in your down payment, closing costs, and monthly mortgage payments.

Find a real estate agent

Finding the right real estate agent can make all the difference in your home-buying experience. Look for an agent who is knowledgeable about the area and has a good reputation.

Start house hunting

Once you’ve found a real estate agent, it’s time to start house hunting. Make a list of must-haves and nice-to-haves, and be prepared to compromise on some things.

Make an offer

When you’ve found the perfect house, it’s time to make an offer. Your real estate agent can help you determine a fair offer based on the current market and the condition of the house.

Get a home inspection

Before closing the deal, it’s important to get a home inspection. This will help identify any potential issues with the house and ensure that you’re making an informed decision.

Close the deal

Finally, it’s time to close the deal. This includes signing the mortgage documents and transferring ownership of the property.

Understanding Mortgages

  1. What is a mortgage?
  2. Types of mortgages
  3. Interest rates
  4. Down payments
  5. Amortization periods
  6. Mortgage default insurance
  7. Pre-approval

What is a mortgage?

A mortgage is a loan that is used to purchase a house. The loan is secured by the property, which means that if you can’t make your mortgage payments, the lender can take possession of the property.

Types of mortgages

There are two main types of mortgages: fixed-rate and variable-rate. Fixed-rate mortgages have a set interest rate for the entire term of the loan, while variable-rate mortgages have an interest rate that can fluctuate.

Interest rates

Interest rates play a big role in your mortgage payments. They can be fixed or variable, and are influenced by factors such as the Bank of Canada’s prime rate and the state of the economy.

Down payments

When purchasing a house, you’ll need to make a down payment. The minimum down payment in Canada is 5% of the purchase price, but a larger down payment can help reduce your mortgage payments.

Amortization periods

The amortization period is the length of time it takes to pay off your mortgage. In Canada, the maximum amortization period is 25 years for insured mortgages.

Mortgage default insurance

If your down payment is less than 20% of the purchase price, you’ll need to get mortgage default insurance. This protects the lender in case you default on your mortgage payments.


Getting pre-approved for a mortgage can make the home-buying process easier. This involves submitting an application to a lender to determine how much money you can borrow and what your interest rate will be.

Finding the Right Mortgage Lender

  1. Research lenders
  2. Compare rates and terms
  3. Check for hidden fees
  4. Read reviews and ask for referrals
  5. Choose a lender and get pre-approved

Research lenders

When looking for a mortgage lender, it’s important to do your research. Look for lenders who are reputable, offer competitive rates and terms, and have good customer service.

Compare rates and terms

Once you’ve found a few potential lenders, it’s time to compare their rates and terms. This will help you determine which lender is the best fit for your needs.

Check for hidden fees

When comparing lenders, make sure to check for any hidden fees. These can include application fees, appraisal fees, and legal fees.

Read reviews and ask for referrals

Reading online reviews and asking for referrals from friends and family can help you get a better understanding of a lender’s reputation and customer service.

Choose a lender and get pre-approved

After doing your research and comparing lenders, choose the one that is the best fit for you and get pre-approved for a mortgage.


Purchasing a house and getting a mortgage can be a complex process, but with the right knowledge and resources, it can also be a rewarding experience. Understanding the home-buying process, different types of mortgages, and finding the right lender are all key factors in making informed decisions. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you’ll be well on your way to owning your dream home in Ontario.


  1. What is the minimum credit score needed to get a mortgage in Ontario?
  2. How much should I budget for closing costs when purchasing a house?
  3. Can I negotiate my mortgage interest rate with my lender?
  4. Do I need to have a job to get a mortgage?
  5. What is the difference between pre-qualification and pre-approval for a mortgage?

1. What is the minimum credit score needed to get a mortgage in Ontario?

The minimum credit score needed to get a mortgage in Ontario varies by lender, but generally, a score of 620 or higher is required.

2. How much should I budget for closing costs when purchasing a house?

Closing costs can vary depending on the purchase price of the home and other factors, but typically range from 1.5% to 4% of the purchase price.

3. Can I negotiate my mortgage interest rate with my lender?

Yes, it is possible to negotiate your mortgage interest rate with your lender, especially if you have a good credit score and can offer a larger down payment.

4. Do I need to have a job to get a mortgage?

While having a job can make it easier to get approved for a mortgage, it is not always necessary. Lenders will consider other sources of income, such as investments or rental properties.

5. What is the difference between pre-qualification and pre-approval for a mortgage?

Pre-qualification is an estimate of how much you may be able to borrow based on your income and credit score. Pre-approval is a more detailed process that involves submitting an application and verifying your income and other financial information to determine the exact amount you can borrow.