Canada: Rate of mortgage arrears lowest level in more than 10 years

The proportion of mortgages in arrears in Canada is at the lowest level for more than 10 years. According to the Canadian Bankers Association, only 0.24 percent of mortgages were more than three months past due in November 2017.

Somewhat paradoxically, regions which have seen the highest growth in house prices in recent months have even lower arrears rates; In Ontario, the level of arrears is at an all-time low at only 0.09%, and in British Columbia, just 0.16% of mortgage payments were in arrears.

"According to the Canadian Bankers Association, only 0.24 percent of mortgages were more than three months past due in November 2017."

This has been attributed to several factors; Firstly, mortgage rates have been low over the past few years, what has helped to keep repayments relatively stable despite rising house prices. Secondly, the tightening of mortgage lending criteria to borrowers with <20% deposits in 2016 has meant borrowers are currently more resilient to adverse borrowing conditions than they have been in the past.

Finally, the housing markets in these areas have been extremely active, meaning that borrowers that face difficulties making loan repayments are easily able to convert their home into cash.

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