Recent data from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is showing that, when it comes to mortgages, Canadians can handle a bit of a larger debt load.
According to the public housing authority and insurer, payments on new Canadian mortgages have been outpacing the rate of inflation, but haven't resulted in higher national delinquency rates.
Average monthly mortgage payments during the fourth quarter of 2016 totalled $1,328. They represented a 4.6 per cent increase over the prior year's average payments of $1,269. That rate far outpaces the rate of inflation for Canada, which currently sits at approximately 1.64 per cent.
National delinquency rates, on the other hand, actually dropped slightly over that time period, falling from 0.35 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2015 to 0.34 per cent a year later. And despite the inordinately hot housing markets Toronto and Vancouver, those areas put up delinquency rates far below the national average, coming in at 0.12 and 0.15 per cent respectively.
Places with the worst delinquency rates were those that had been hard economically in recent months and years. Areas with resource-based economies like Calgary (0.35 per cent), Edmonton (0.52 per cent), Regina (0.47 per cent), and Saskatoon (0.51 per cent), all sat above the national average. Many of the large Maritime cities struggled as well.
From a payment volume standpoint though, the Maritimes fared fairly well. New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland were four of the five lowest-paying provinces on average. Here is a full listing of those average scheduled monthly payment amounts: