BC Mortgage Consumers Confident and Cautious in their Mortgage Choices

    OTTAWA, March 20 /CNW Telbec/ - Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation's
(CMHC) 2007 Mortgage Consumer Survey shows that the overwhelming majority
BC residents who recently purchased a home are confident their mortgage choice
was the best for them, and 79 per cent intend to pay off their mortgage as
quickly as possible - on par with the national average of 78 per cent.
    "This study confirms that British Columbians remain fundamentally
cautious when it comes to managing their mortgage debt," said Pierre Serré,
Vice-President, Insurance Product & Business Development, CMHC. "Homeowners in
BC are confident about their mortgage decisions and intend to pay off their
mortgages as quickly as they are able."
    The 2007 national survey focused primarily on recent purchasers and also
for the first time included questions on homeowner behaviour regarding
mortgage debt re-payment since arranging their mortgage.
    Recent purchasers in BC are taking steps to reduce their mortgage debt.
Nearly half are making weekly or bi-weekly mortgage payments, and the vast
majority of these are on an accelerated basis which has the effect of
shortening the time required to payoff the mortgage. In addition, 39 per cent
are planning on reducing their mortgage amortization period when their
mortgage comes up for renewal.
    CMHC's survey indicated that 93 per cent of British Columbians who
recently purchased a home felt that the mortgage choice they made was the best
option for them, compared to the national average of 89 per cent. As well,
more than half agreed that, whenever possible, they would use extra money to
pay down the principal on their mortgage. Among BC residents who either
purchased a home, renewed, or refinanced a mortgage, 86 per cent are confident
in their ability to manage their debt.
    Mortgage consumers in BC are also more likely to use the services of a
mortgage broker when purchasing a home. In 2007, 43 per cent of purchasers in
BC used a mortgage broker to arrange their mortgage, well over the national
average of 33 per cent.
    The survey also reveals that 89 per cent of mortgage consumers in BC are
satisfied with the services they received from either their mortgage lender or
broker, compared to 81 per cent in 2006.
    CMHC's Mortgage Consumer Survey is conducted each fall to examine
consumer behaviour, attitudes and expectations when acquiring, renewing or
refinancing a mortgage. The survey is based on a national probability sample
of more than 1,400 recent active mortgage consumers comprised of first-time
buyers, repeat buyers, mortgage renewers and refinance consumers. The results
for the entire sample are accurate within 2.6 percentage points 19 times out
of 20.
    As Canada's leading mortgage insurer, CMHC shares a wealth of knowledge
and housing expertise for the benefit of Canadians. CMHC's mortgage insurance
has opened doors for millions of Canadians, giving them the assurance and
piece of mind that comes with homeownership.

    As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on over 60 years of
experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally
sustainable, and affordable homes - homes that will continue to create vibrant
and healthy communities and cities across the country.
    For more information, visit www.cmhc.ca or call 1-800-668-2642.

For further information:

For further information: on this release: Julie Girard, CMHC Media
Relations, (613) 748-4684, jagirard@cmhc-schl.gc.ca; This release is also
available on the CMHC Web site: http://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca

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