Getting a mortgage as a newcomer to Canada

Date: April 24, 2023

When it comes to moving – especially to a new country thousands of miles from your current home – everything can seem impossibly overwhelming and stressful. At Westoba, we understand that immigrating to Canada, while exciting, can be a challenging task.  

Westoba proudly employs new Canadians, supporting them through their journey to make Manitoba their home. If you’ve chosen to make Canada your new home, welcome! We are here to help.  

Finding the perfect house to call home can go a long way in helping you feel settled and established, which is why we’ve developed mortgage options that make it easier for new Canadians to own a home.  

“Our mortgage is a no-income qualifier mortgage available to non-landed immigrants, new permanent residents, or Canadian expats returning to Canada,” explains an Assistant Branch Manager with Westoba.

What this means is that new Canadians and their families can get into in a new home in less time. Westoba has confidence in the capabilities of those who immigrate to Manitoba for work or school and have created a mortgage that makes it easier for them to meet the requirements to buy a home and begin building a new life here. 

With over 13,000 new Canadians choosing our multi-cultural province as their new home every year, you are not alone on your journey. Keep reading below to find out if you are eligible for the New to Canada program – you are closer to owning your home than you may think.

Eligibility for the New to Canada Mortgage

Our no-income qualifier mortgage means you don’t need to have found a job yet, in order to be eligible. To qualify for the New to Canada Mortgage, you must: 

  • have lived in Canada for five (5) years or less or 3 years if Canadian expat ; OR  
  • have a work permit*, student visa* or permanent resident  
  • Have a minimum down payment of 25%* of the purchase price 
  • obtain life insurance or assign existing life insurance. 
  • You must be purchasing first primary residence in Canada 

Qualifications for the New to Canada Mortgage 

Whether your dream home is a single-family house, a side-by-side, a condominium or a town home, as long as it is your primary residence you may qualify for a New to Canada Mortgage. Along with being your primary residence, the home you are purchasing must: 

  • Have a minimum down payment of 25% of the purchase price; 
  • Have an economic life of at least 25 years (the expected period of time during which the home remains useful to the average owner); 
  • Be valued at less than $1,000,000; and 
  • Be a residential property located in a market with demonstrated ongoing resale demand within 150 kilometres of Winnipeg or Brandon, Manitoba. 

Or maybe you would prefer to build your new home from the ground up! In this case, you may apply for a New to Canada construction mortgage, which is a loan used to pay for building your new home that then converts into a standard mortgage. To apply for a new construction mortgage, you must meet the following conditions: 

  • The approval letter must state that any overages require pre-approval by Westoba Credit Union; 
  • The down payment (25%) must be held on deposit with Westoba Credit Union and sent to the legal representative upon request; 
  • The build is completed as a turnkey build; 
  • Progress draw mortgages (a loan where the borrowed funds are used to help finance the construction of your new home. The funds will be released to you in installments – or ‘draws’ – as construction progresses) may be considered providing with the above requirements are met and: 
  • 25% down payment be made with an additional 10% to be held on deposit with Westoba Credit Union. An additional 10% will be released upon 100% completion of the home once confirmed that no cost overruns exist. 

*Some conditions apply. 

How to apply

This may be a lot of information to take in, but we are here to help you every step of the way. If you are ready to get started, the application process is as easy as scheduling a meeting with one of our Financial Consultants or giving us a call at 1-877-WESTOBA. 

Our experts are fantastic resources to answer any questions you may have, identify opportunities and the right programs for you, and guide you through a Financial Fitness Checkup to better understand your financial status.  

“A Financial Fitness Checkup is an opportunity for you to sit down – either virtually or in-person – to help gain an understanding of your financial status,” explains Tristan.  

During the meeting, a Westoba Financial Consultant will focus on helping you identify your financial priorities – whether that includes paying down debt or saving for something specific. Once you’ve created those goals, they can work with you to design a tailored action plan to achieve these goals as fast and efficiently as possible. 

A great first step you can do from home is taking the Financial Fitness Quiz on our website to give you an idea of your current financial status. 

Additional programs available 

Once you have been approved for the New to Canada Mortgage, you could be eligible for additional programs like No-Fee Banking, a Credit Card or a Home Equity Line of Credit.  

No-Fee Banking 

At Westoba, we understand that coming to Canada was a big investment, which is why we offer a no-fee transactional banking account for up to one year. We will help you become familiar with the Canadian banking system while you have peace of mind knowing you will not incur any service charges during your first year in Canada. 

Credit Card 

Establishing a healthy credit history is critical in ensuring long-term financial success, and we can help you by offering a guaranteed-approval credit card of up to $1,000 to get you started.  

Home Equity Line of Credit 

If you are interested in remodeling your home, paying for college or even wanting to take a vacation, the Home Equity Line of Credit is available to you on approved credit. 

Ready to get started? Call 1-877-WESTOBA or book an appointment with a Westoba mortgage specialist 

Book now!