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1.69%

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Compare mortgage rates in Nanaimo.

Want to live on a beautiful island, surrounded by nature, that’s also home to a bustling urban centre? Look no further than Nanaimo, British Columbia. Situated on the east coast of Vancouver Island, Nanaimo is a short ferry ride away from Vancouver. Originally known as The Hub City, it also acts as a gateway to popular tourist towns such as Tofino and Comox.

With a population that cracked 100,000 people in 2021, Nanaimo maintains its small town charm while offering a bustling economy that’s driven by provincial politics, service, retail, and a burgeoning tech scene.

If you love nature and want to be on the ocean, Nanaimo might be for you. LowestRates.ca allows you to compare mortgage rates from 75+ banks and brokers across Canada. Just scroll to the top of this page and tell us whether you’re buying a home, renewing or refinancing. Answer a few questions and in just three minutes, we'll show you mortgage rates in Nanaimo. Read on to learn more about how to get a mortgage in The Harbour City.

Variable Rates

As low as

1.10%

Fixed Rates

As low as

1.69%

Cha-ching! Our rates are always lower than the posted bank rates.

Current lowest posted bank rate

2.44%

Conventional vs. high-ratio mortgages: which is cheaper?

If you’re interested in buying a home, you’re probably curious about how to find the lowest mortgage interest rate in Nanaimo. You might have heard terms like “conventional” and “high-ratio” mortgages and wonder which one is cheaper. The good news is that average mortgage rates in Nanaimo are at historical lows for both conventional and high-ratio mortgages, and mortgage companies in Nanaimo (and across Canada) will lend for either type of mortgage.

A conventional mortgage is one where the buyer puts down at least 20% of the home’s purchase price as a down payment. Conventional mortgages require more money upfront than high-ratio mortgages, but they will also have lower weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly payments due to the fact that a buyer will have a smaller mortgage balance.

A high-ratio mortgage, on the other hand, is where buyers put down less than 20% of the purchase price as a down payment. In this scenario, you’re required to purchase mortgage insurance from the CMHC. This type of insurance is to protect lenders if you stop making your mortgage payments and default on your loan.

A high-ratio mortgage, on the other hand, is one where the buyer puts down less than 20% of the home’s price. This allows buyers to purchase a home with less money upfront, but results in higher mortgage payments. A high-ratio mortgage loan in Nanaimo will also require mortgage default insurance, which adds to your total costs.

Conventional 5-year fixed mortgage rates vs. high ratio 5-year fixed mortgage rates in British Columbia

DateAverage Conventional RateAverage High Ratio Rate
09/20 2.02%1.82%
10/20 1.90%1.75%
11/20 1.82%1.64%
12/20 1.86%1.66%
01/21 1.94%1.71%
02/21 1.67%1.49%
03/21 1.89%1.73%
04/21 2.05%1.85%
05/21 2.06%1.86%
06/21 2.08%1.89%
07/21 1.99%1.72%
08/21 2.12%1.75%

Last Updated: September 1, 2021

Fixed rate vs. variable rate mortgages: which is cheaper?

When searching for house mortgage rates in Nanaimo, choosing between a fixed or a variable rate is a big consideration. On LowestRates.ca, you can compare both fixed mortgage rates in Nanaimo and variable mortgage rates in Nanaimo.

Fixed rates are the more popular option due to the fact that they offer stability over the term of the mortgage. Those with fixed rates have a locked-in rate, so they know exactly how much of their mortgage payment will go towards the principal mortgage amount. Buyers who believe rates might increase over the term of their mortgage might be more comfortable with a fixed rate.

Variable rates, on the other hand, are based on the lender’s prime rate and fluctuate based on economic conditions. As lenders lower or increase their prime rate, variable rates will follow suit. Meaning buyers may end up paying more or less toward their principal mortgage amount over the mortgage’s term. Buyers who believe rates will decrease over their mortgage term might be more comfortable with a variable rate.

5-year fixed vs. 5-year variable mortgage rates in British Columbia

MonthFixedVariable
09/20 1.93%1.83%
10/20 1.83%1.79%
11/20 1.73%1.76%
12/20 1.74%1.69%
01/21 1.83%1.68%
02/21 1.62%1.45%
03/21 1.84%1.36%
04/21 1.99%1.36%
05/21 2.01%1.35%
06/21 2.01%1.34%
07/21 1.91%1.31%
08/21 2.01%1.26%

Last Updated: September 1, 2021

Factors that affect your Nanaimo mortgage rate

When searching for a home, there are a number of factors that will determine whether or not you will qualify for the cheapest mortgage rates in Nanaimo. Lenders have a number of different ways to help them determine the size of the mortgage they offer a borrower, as well as the rate they will qualify for. Let’s take a closer look at some of these factors.

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Typical mortgage amounts in Nanaimo

If you’ve been looking at homes and have set a budget for the price you’d like to pay, it might be time to look at what your mortgage might cost.

The size of your mortgage will depend on the cost of your house, the size of your down payment, and the mortgage interest rate you sign. Let’s look at some numbers to see what you might expect to pay. LowestRates.ca’s mortgage payment calculator can help with that.

Let’s say you’re purchasing a house that costs $665,900, which was the benchmark price for a home on Vancouver Island in June 2021, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). Our mortgage payment calculator specifies that the minimum down payment on that home would be 6.25% (5% for the first $500,000 and 10% on the amount that exceeds that). We’ll set the amortization period at 25% and assume a fixed mortgage rate of 1.75%. Mortgage default insurance would be required, because the down payment is less than 25%. That cost would be $20,543, which will be rolled into the mortgage amount. The total monthly mortgage cost for this scenario would be $2,654.

Now, let’s assume the same home price, same mortgage rate, but with 20.2% down. In this case, mortgage default insurance is no longer needed. The total monthly mortgage cost would drop to $2,187.

Nanaimo’s housing market and home prices

Nanaimo’s housing market has been heating up over the past year. As mentioned, the benchmark home price on Vancouver Island was $665,900 in June, which is an increase of 25.9% year-over-year from the previous benchmark of $539,182. Nanaimo’s home prices have been on a steady upward trajectory since June 2015, when the benchmark price was $310,000.

However, Vancouver Island townhouses offer a slightly more affordable option. Their benchmark price was $549,300 in June, according to the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board.

Nanaimo’s benchmark price has also increased over the past year. It was up to $728,200, which was an increase of 31%.

Nanaimo closing costs and land transfer tax

Closing costs are another expenditure to factor into your housing search. While trying to calculate your mortgage in Nanaimo, you might also want to calculate what your closing costs might be.

Closing costs are in addition to your down payment and typically cost 1.5% to 5% of the home’s purchase price, but they vary. Some common closing costs include:

Taxes are another closing cost to consider; these include transfer taxes. Land transfer tax in B.C. is based on the fair market value of the land. In addition to land transfer taxes, buyers are responsible for paying general property taxes. General property taxes are based on a sliding scale:

B.C. has a foreign buyer’s tax, which applies to foreign nationals, foreign corporations and taxable trustees. This is a 20% tax on the price of the property for homes in certain B.C. regions, including Nanaimo.

 

Information for first-time home buyers in Nanaimo

Banks vs. brokers: There are two main ways to get a mortgage in Canada: Either through a bank or a mortgage broker. You probably have an existing relationship with a bank, which might make it more convenient for you to also get your mortgage there. However, brokers have access to the rates of dozens of different lenders, including some of the big banks, so you might qualify for a better rate with a broker. Brokers will also provide information on things like penalties, prepayments, whether to go for a variable or fixed rate mortgage, and other mortgage details.

Down payment and deposit: You’ll need at least 5% of the home’s purchase price to put down as a down payment. If the price exceeds $500,000, you’ll need more than that. Refer to our section above on factors that affect your Nanaimo mortgage rate for more details on minimum down payments.

Home purchases also require a deposit. This is provided to and held by your lawyer — and is typically given within 24 hours of your accepted offer. The standard deposit is 5%; it will be held in trust and can eventually be used as your down payment.

Home Buyers’ Amount (formerly First-Time Home Buyers’ Tax Credit): As a first-time home buyer, you will likely qualify for the The First-Time Home Buyer's Tax Credit. This federal tax credit can be claimed for up to $750.

GST/HST New Housing Rebate: This is another way for certain buyers to recoup a small amount of costs. Buyers of a new or substantially renovated house may qualify for homes purchased as a primary residence.

Federal Home Accessibility Tax (HATC) for Seniors and Persons with Disabilities: This is another potential tax credit you might qualify for. This is a tax that’s available to certain buyers who qualify as seniors or persons with disabilities.

Provincial Home Owner Grant (HOG) program: It can help qualified homeowners reduce the amount of taxes they pay. It’s available to Canadian citizens and permanent residents and there are three different types: regular, senior, and persons with disabilities.

The regular grant is available to homeowners whose property is assessed at or below a value of $1,625,000. Those within the Capital Regional District, the Metro Vancouver Regional District and the Fraser Valley Regional District can qualify for a $570 grant. Those within all other regions can qualify for a grant of $770.

B.C. First-Time Home Buyers’ Program: Qualifying buyers may be exempt from paying property transfer tax (1% exemption on the first $200,000 of a home purchase and 2$ on the remainder of a purchase price up to $500,000).

Your questions about Nanaimo mortgages, answered.

What’s the difference between a mortgage term and an amortization period?

Mortgage term and amortization period are two important time periods for all mortgages. While many may confuse the two, they are both different but are equally important to understand.

A mortgage term is the contracted amount of time a home buyer agrees to pay a specific mortgage rate. Mortgage terms in Canada range from six months to as long as 10 years. The most common term, however, is five years. Every home buyer will pay off the entirety of their mortgage over the course of a number of different mortgage terms.

The amortization period, meanwhile, is the entire life of the mortgage, as agreed upon by the home buyer and the lender. Mortgages are paid off over the course of the amortization period, which commonly range from 25-30 years. Mortgages that require mortgage default insurance can have a maximum amortization period of 25 years.

What’s the difference between an open mortgage vs. a closed mortgage?

The best mortgage lenders serving the Nanaimo area offer both open and closed mortgages. There are a few differences you should understand before choosing one over the other.

An open mortgage is one where the lender allows the borrower to make additional mortgage payments, known as prepayments, to the payments already agreed upon. So, say your monthly mortgage payment is $1,500. Open mortgages allow you to make more payments toward your mortgage than the set payment amount. This allows borrowers to pay off their mortgages quicker.

Closed mortgages lack the same flexibility. These mortgages have rules about the amount of additional payments that can be made. The tradeoff, though, is that closed mortgages typically come with a lower mortgage rate.

So, when doing a mortgage rates comparison in Nanaimo, consider which one might be a better fit.

How much does it cost to live in Nanaimo?

Whether you’re buying a home or renting a home, your housing costs will only make up one part of your cost of living. So, while it’s prudent to shop for the lowest mortgage rates in Nanaimo, it’s also a good idea to consider the additional expenses you can expect to incur.

Nanaimo does have a public transit system and ferry system so, depending on where you choose to live on the island, you might be able to rely on those for getting around. However, you’d likely want the flexibility of owning a car — particularly if you’re interested in exploring the beautiful nature around B.C. That means you might have to factor car payments into your budget.

Car insurance is another expense you should expect to have. Unfortunately, British Columbia has the highest car insurance rates in Canada, according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada. The average driver can expect to pay $1,832 per year. For context, Ontario drivers — which pay the second highest rates in the country — pay an average of $1,505 per year.

How much does getting a lower interest rate matter in Nanaimo?

A low rate is only one, albeit important, factor a borrower should consider when searching for the best mortgage rates in Nanaimo, Canada. A low rate ensures your payments will be more affordable, but there are some other factors in a mortgage that should also be taken into account.

We mentioned open and closed mortgages as well as prepayment privileges. If you’re someone who wants payment flexibility — particularly if you want to pay off your mortgage as quickly as possible — you might want to consider a mortgage that offers flexible prepayment privileges.

Penalties are another factor. Some lenders will charge penalties for breaking the mortgage early or for making additional payments. Have a look at the fine print in the contract to better understand penalties and how they might impact you.

Finally, portability is another factor you might want to consider. A portable mortgage is one that can be transferred from one home to another. Say you’re unsure how long you’d like to live in a certain property or area. A portable mortgage would allow you to take that mortgage with you to your next home, should you decide to make a move.

If you keep these additional factors in mind when you compare mortgage rates in Nanaimo, you’ll be prepared to choose the best possible mortgage for your situation.

Your questions about LowestRates.ca, answered.

How are mortgage rates determined on LowestRates.ca?

LowestRates.ca works with 75+ banks and brokers to bring you competitive mortgage rates from lenders in Canada. We work with our partners to obtain their best deals and offers, and then we let them compete for your business. All you have to do is answer a few questions, and in minutes you’ll be provided with today’s mortgage rates for Nanaimo. There’s no obligation, but you can choose to speak with our broker partner to secure your best rate and see if you're eligible for more savings.

Is it safe to get a mortgage online?

Yes, it’s safe — you no longer need to visit a bank branch or mortgage broker’s office in person to apply for a mortgage. It’s becoming increasingly common for Canadians to apply for mortgages online. LowestRates.ca only works with reputable, trustworthy financial institutions. Your credit score won’t be affected and your information is secure. We don’t share your information with anyone unless you want to connect with a mortgage broker. We take care of the heavy lifting by comparing the market for you and can connect you with the best mortgage lenders in the country.

How do I know I’m getting the lowest rate?

We have a strong selection of lenders on LowestRates.ca including the big banks and many independent providers and we’re adding more lenders all the time. This ensures we’re always delivering you a competitive rate. Even if you’re not ready to commit to anything, you can use our site as a starting point for research (it’s totally free, and you’re under no obligation).

The better informed you are, the more likely you'll negotiate a better deal for yourself. And, really, that’s what we care about the most.

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