The Following changes are for High Ratio Mortgages i.e. mortgages with less than 20% down payment.
1) The maximum number of years the government will back a mortgage was lowered from 35 to 30. This will take effect March 18th. Having a longer amortization can allow the consumer to borrower more funds or lower their monthly mortgage costs. Now 30 year amortization will be the longest option for Canadians.
2) The maximum that Canadians can refinance their home was lowered from 90 per cent to 85 per cent. This will take effect March 18th.
3) Government insurance backing on home equity lines of credit, or HELOCs, has been removed. Most lines of credit are set up conventionally at 80% loan to value so this change will not have a big impact. This will take effect April 18th.