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What Mortgage Can I Afford?

As a trusted mortgage broker, I understand the importance of determining the mortgage amount that aligns with your financial situation and goals. One common question among Alberta homebuyers is, “What mortgage can I afford?” I will provide you with valuable insights to help you understand the factors that determine your affordability and guide you in making informed decisions.

Understanding Affordability

Affordability refers to the ability to comfortably manage your mortgage payments and related housing costs within your overall financial circumstances. Determining affordability involves analyzing various factors, including your income, expenses, debt obligations, and down payment size.

Gross Debt Service (GDS) Ratio

Lenders often use the Gross Debt Service (GDS) ratio as a guideline to assess affordability. The GDS ratio represents the percentage of your gross income that can be allocated to cover housing costs, including mortgage payments, property taxes, heating expenses, and, if applicable, condominium fees. With good credit, lenders will go up to 39% GDS on your gross income.

Total Debt Service (TDS) Ratio

In addition to the GDS ratio, lenders also consider the Total Debt Service (TDS) ratio. The TDS ratio represents the percentage of your gross income that can be allocated to cover all your debts, including housing costs, credit card payments, car loans, and other outstanding loans. And again, with good credit, lenders will go up to 44% TDS on your gross income.

Down Payment Size

The size of your down payment significantly impacts your mortgage affordability. In Alberta, a down payment of at least 5% is typically required for a home purchase. However, a larger down payment can reduce your mortgage amount and monthly payments, potentially increasing your affordability.

Mortgage Affordability Calculators

To get an estimate of the mortgage amount you can afford, consider using online mortgage affordability calculators. These calculators take into account your income, expenses, interest rates, and other factors specific to Alberta’s housing market. They provide a useful starting point for understanding your affordability range.

Consultation with a Mortgage Broker

While online calculators are helpful, consulting with me is crucial for a comprehensive analysis of your financial situation. I can review your income, expenses, credit history, and other relevant factors to determine your maximum mortgage amount. I have access to a wide range of lenders and mortgage products in Alberta, enabling me to find the best options that align with your affordability and financial goals.

Determining what mortgage you can afford is a critical step in the home-buying process. Utilizing online affordability calculators tailored to Alberta’s market can provide initial estimates, but it’s advisable to consult with a broker like myself for a thorough analysis. I am here to guide you through the process, helping you determine the mortgage amount that fits within your financial means and supports your homeownership goals.

Duane Springsteel     
Duane Springsteel