Most Canadians view homeownership as good long-term investment

Nearly 90 per cent of recent home purchasers across the country believe that homeownership is a good long-term investment and that almost 70 per cent think that now is a good time to purchase a home in their community, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s 2009 Mortgage Consumer Survey.

The survey results also indicated that recent purchasers are knowledgeable about the mortgage process and their lender’s assessment of eligibility. For example, 86 per cent knew that the level of total housing and other monthly payments should generally not exceed 40 per cent of gross household income, which is in line with accepted mortgage lending practices.

“Given the current economy, this study indicates that Canadians continue to be optimistic about homeownership and are astute mortgage consumers," said François Blouin, director of Insurance Products and Strategic Direction for CMHC.

“Our results reaffirm what we have seen in previous surveys — when it comes to their mortgages, Canadians are informed and manage their debt prudently.”

The survey showed that recent purchasers are prudent mortgage managers.

According to the survey, 75 per cent of purchasers have a goal to be mortgage-free sooner than their original amortization. In fact, 20 per cent of recent purchasers reported having made a lump sum payment to their mortgage.

“CMHC's 2009 mortgage consumer survey results are encouraging and provide insightful information, indicating that Canadians feel positive about Canada’s housing market," said Diane Finley, the federal minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). 

“As well, Canada’s Economic Action Plan’s home purchase and renovation incentives, and CMHC’s recent outreach campaign to help Canadians who may be facing difficulties with their mortgage payment, are clear actions to support homeowners and the housing market.”

Similar to CMHC’s last mortgage consumer survey, the recent survey indicated Canadians continue to be well served by the mortgage industry, with 77 per cent of recent mortgage purchasers expressing satisfaction with the service received from their lender or broker.

CMHC has conducted the survey since 1999 to examine consumer behaviour, attitudes and expectations when acquiring, renewing or refinancing a mortgage. This year, CMHC surveyed more than 2,500 recent mortgage consumers online from mid-March to mid-April 2009.