What is an Insured Mortgage?

An Insured Mortgage is a mortgage covered by Mortgage Default Insurance.

An insured mortgage is a mortgage covered by Mortgage Default Insurance. This insurance is purchased to protect the lender (not the borrower) against any losses related to borrower default and foreclosure, and is applied to mortgages with Loan to Values less than 80%. Currently, there are three insurers in Canada; CMHC, Canada Guaranty and Sagen. Each of these insurers offers two types of insurance coverage.

Transactional Insurance, referred to as a High Ratio Mortgage: This one-time premium is applied to mortgages with Loan-to-Value ratios greater than 80% (sometimes added to lower LTV’s in unique situations). Borrowers are responsible for paying the insurance premium and it is typically added to the mortgage balance at the time their mortgage is advanced. The premium is tiered and reduces as the client puts more down towards the principal. You can see a full breakdown of the premiums here: https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/finance-and-investing/mortgage-loan-insurance/the-resource/mortgage-loan-insurance-and-premiums.

Portfolio Insurance or Bulk Insurance: This premium is also an applicable option for mortgages with Loan-to-Values less than 80%. Most often borrowers are not even aware that this coverage has been purchased as the premium is paid for by the lender or bank. Mortgage Finance Corporations (such as First National and MCAP) typically use this type of coverage on all the mortgages they fund, and Big Banks may also use this insurance, but to a lesser extent. Mortgage Finance Corporations will buy this type of insurance in order to offer lower mortgage rates.

Since default insurance is added to help protect the lender, mortgages that have been insured are viewed as more secure, and therefore borrowers often receive lower rates. Note: Recent Government changes have resulted in greater restrictions on what kinds of mortgages can be insured.

You can read more here: Confused by your Rate Options?

Note: Rules and guidelines are subject to change. Please inquire within.