New mortgage rates provide flexible options and full prepayment privileges
HAMILTON, ON, Jan. 23, 2012 /CNW/ - FirstOntario Credit Union, one of Canada's leading member-owned financial cooperatives, today announced a four-year fixed rate mortgage at 2.98% and a seven-year fixed rate mortgage at 3.98%, effective immediately. The special rate offers - available for new and renewed mortgages - come with standard FirstOntario features such as a 90-day rate guarantee on pre-approvals and accelerated payment options.
"As consumers, we all need to be on the constant lookout for ways to reduce housing costs and eliminate debt faster," said Dave Schurman, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, FirstOntario Credit Union. "We urge anyone looking for a better deal than their current bank is giving them to take advantage of these great rate offers."
FirstOntario Credit Union is committed to helping members reduce mortgage debt and become debt-free sooner. FirstOntario offers the following tips to anyone shopping around for a mortgage:
- Take a good look at your current financial situation to determine the price range of homes available to you.
- Consider applying for a pre-approved mortgage. Pre-approval defines your price range and may give you an advantage over competing purchasers when you make an offer.
- Decide which mortgage is right for you. Whether to take a fixed rate or variable rate mortgage may depend on the stability of your income and your comfort level if interest rates start to rise.
- If possible, make accelerated weekly or bi-weekly payments instead of monthly payments.
- Make a larger down payment as a way of paying less interest over the life of your mortgage.
- Consider a shorter amortization. The shorter the life of the mortgage, the less you will pay in interest in the long run.
Earlier this month, FirstOntario Credit Union launched a public awareness campaign to educate consumers about the benefits of a community-based credit union over Canada's big banks. The campaign's website (www.MyOwnBank.ca) offers candid testimonials from consumers, links to products and services, as well as a step-by-step guide to empower consumers to make a change. The site also offers a step-by-step guide to help consumers to leave their bank for good (www.myownbank.ca/Lose-Your-Bank).
A new, national survey conducted by FirstOntario in November 2011 revealed that 40 per cent of Canadians are unhappy with the high service fees their bank charges them. The survey polled more than 2,500 Canadians on their banking practices, preferences, satisfaction levels, and asked whether they would be willing to leave their bank. Of those surveyed, 42 per cent indicated they are either 'unsatisfied completely' or only 'somewhat satisfied' with their current bank. Nearly 10 per cent said they are reluctant to switch because it is the only bank they have ever had, or they feel that switching would be too much trouble.
Canada has the world's highest per capita membership in the credit union movement, with more than 10 million Canadians and small business owners - roughly one-third of the Canadian population - presently being served by the credit union/caisse populaire system. Credit unions provide the same products and services expected from a financial institution but with a personal, friendly touch and a commitment to invest back in the communities in which they operate. Credit unions differ from banks and other financial institutions in that the members who have accounts in the credit union are owners of the credit union and thus have a voice.
About FirstOntario Credit Union
In business since 1939, FirstOntario Credit Union has more than $2.9 billion in funds under management, serves over 85,000 Members and offers a full suite of banking products including daily banking, mortgages, lines of credit, loans and investments. FirstOntario operates 21 full-service branches and two satellite branches serving 13 communities across the Hamilton, Halton, Niagara, Haldimand/Norfolk and Oxford regions and Membership at FirstOntario is open to anyone. FirstOntario is a proud advocate of the communities we serve and supports many important community organizations. FirstOntario is a founding sponsor for Hive Hamilton, and supports Co-operative Young Leaders (CYL) and youth at risk through Soupfest. FirstOntario also offers a scholastic bursary program and a microlending program in the Hamilton and Niagara regions. For more information please visit: www.FirstOntarioCU.com and www.MyOwnBank.ca.
For further information:
For additional information or to schedule an interview, please contact: