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The amortization period is the total number of years you will need to completely pay off your mortgage and interest. The most common amortization period is 25 years. This is also the longest period allowed if your downpayment is less than 20% and your loan needs to be insured by a mortgage insurer like CMHC.

It's often advantageous to choose a shorter amortization period, because by paying off your mortgage more quickly you’ll save on interest.

To see how choosing a different amortization period affects the total amount you pay, use our calculator.


The mortgage term is the period during which your mortgage contract and the interest rate it specifies are in effect. For example, the amortization period for your mortgage might be 25 years, while the term might be three years. At the end of the three years, you have to renew your mortgage for another term. This is an opportunity for you to renegotiate your interest rate and conditions.


The downpayment is the initial amount you pay when you first purchase your home. The mortgage loan covers the rest of the purchase price.

The minimum downpayment is:

  • 5% for properties $500,000 or less
  • 10% for the portion in excess of $500,000
  • 10% if the property has more than two dwellings (triplex, quadruplex, apartment building)
  • 20% for properties $1 million and above
  • 20% when you take out a home equity line of credit

Did you know that you can use your RRSPs to make a downpayment? Learn more about the Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP).

Fixed rate and variable rate

fixed rate remains the same for the duration of the mortgage term. This means that your payments will stay the same too.

With a variable mortgage rate, the interest rate and payment amount can go up or down depending on market fluctuations.

When you take out a mortgage loan you can choose between a fixed rate, a variable rate or a combination of the two.

home equity line of credit comes with a variable rate.

The made-to-measure mortgage has a variable rate for the line of credit portion, and for the loan portion you can choose between a fixed rate, a variable rate or a combination of the two.

View our current mortgage rates.

Capped variable rate

By opting for a capped variable rate when you take out your mortgage, you can protect yourself against rate increases. The rate you pay will never exceed the capped rate. For example, if you choose to cap the rate at 5%, you can be sure that your rate will never be higher than this.

  Variable rate Capped variable rate
Interest rate

Prime rate + 00%1
Adjusted monthly

Prime rate1 + 0.25%
Adjusted monthly


5-year closed term

5-year closed term


What is a mortgage?

A mortgage loan, or mortgage, is a legal agreement in which the house you buy is used as a security for the repayment of the funds you borrow. You must repay the loan amount plus interest.

How does mortgage financing work?

Mortgage financing allows you to borrow money to purchase a property. You repay the loan in instalments, which include interest.

We offer two financing solutions: mortgage loans and our All‑In‑One home equity line of credit™.

Are you a first-time buyer? Here are six things to do before you buy.

Need a little help? Find an advisor.

What does a mortgage advisor do?

Your mortgage advisor helps you choose the financing solution that best suits your needs. They're by your side at every step of the homebuying process and can help you get pre‑approved for a mortgage as early as your very first meeting.

What is a first mortgage?

A first mortgage is one where the mortgage lender’s claim over the secured property (in this case, the house) has priority over the borrower’s other creditors. Some lenders may agree to a second mortgage, or even to lending without security over the property. To take advantage of National Bank’s rates, your loan must be secured by a first mortgage.

If a couple divorces or separates, what happens to their mortgage?

There are a few options:

  1. The couple can sell their property and split the equity between them.
  2. One spouse can assume the mortgage (i.e., accept sole responsibility for it).
  3. One spouse can buy out the other and refinance the property (get a new mortgage).

What will happen to my mortgage if I die or become critically ill or disabled?

If you can no longer pay your mortgage, your co-borrower or your family will have to take over the payments. If they cannot afford to pay, they may be forced to sell the house.

This is why it’s important to protect yourself and your loved ones by taking out mortgage loan insurance. The insurance covers your insured payments in the event of disability, critical illness or death, depending on the coverage you choose.

Mortgage solutions

Mortgage loan or line of credit—which one is right for me?

mortgage loan lets you borrow the money you need to buy your home, which is then used as collateral for the loan. You repay the loan in instalments, which include interest.

The All‑In‑One is a home equity line of credit. You can use it to purchase your home and then access your repaid principal to finance other projects without having to apply for another loan.

If you’re having trouble choosing between the two, there’s another option: our made-to-measure mortgage combines a loan portion and a line of credit portion. Speak with your mortgage advisor for more information.

Magic wand icon


Get $750 or $1,500 in cashback when you sign up for an All-In-One home equity line of credit.2

What term should I choose for my fixed-rate mortgage loan?

It all depends on what your plans are and how much risk you are willing to accept. Think carefully, because once you sign your rate will be fixed for the duration of the term.

If you’re planning to remain in your home for many years, and you don’t want to renegotiate your rate, a longer term may suit your needs best. A longer term generally means a higher rate but lower risk, because you’re protected from potential interest rate hikes.

If you’re planning on selling your property, or you want the opportunity to renegotiate the rate and loan conditions, a shorter term is a better option for you. A higher tolerance for risk is required in this case: while you may save money if interest rates fall, remember that rates may also go up.

If you’re still unsure, ask your mortgage advisor for help choosing the best option for you.

What’s the difference between a conventional loan and an insured loan?

conventional loan is a mortgage with an initial downpayment of at least 20%.

If the downpayment is less than 20%, an insured loan is required. This means that the loan must be insured by one of the recognized mortgage loan insurers, Genworth Financial Canada or the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

How does the All‑In‑One line of credit work?

The All‑In‑One is a home equity line of credit. You can use it to purchase your home and then access your repaid principal to finance other projects without having to apply for another loan. Up to 65% of the value of the property can be in the form of a line of credit. You must provide a downpayment of at least 20% of the value of the property, and the rest of the financing, if applicable, must be in the form of a mortgage loan.

With this line of credit you can integrate your bank accounts ($6 per month per account) and save even more by consolidating your other loans with the same interest rate.

As you pay off your loan, the repaid principal becomes automatically available for other projects. You can access your funds at an ABM, via National Bank online, with your debit card, and more.

How can I get financing for a property that needs renovations?

You have three options:

  1. Use the equity from the property, either by taking some of your downpayment and putting it toward the renovations, or by using the funds available via your All‑In‑One home equity line of credit.
  2. Finance the renovations at the time of the purchase by adding their estimated costs to your mortgage.
  3. Apply for a Home Improvement Line of Credit in addition to your mortgage loan to borrow $5,000 or more for your renovation project.

What about self-employed workers?

If you’re self-employed or a small-business owner, you may not be able to meet the standard proof of income requirements. If you’ve been in business for at least two years and can provide evidence of sound financial and credit management, you can finance or refinance your home with our mortgage for the self‑employed.

Should I choose an open or closed fixed-rate mortgage loan?

This table compares the features of open and closed mortgage loans.

  Open Closed
What does it mean?

You can pay off your mortgage more quickly without penalty.

There is normally a prepayment charge if you make extra payments before the end of the term. Accelerated payments can be made without penalty under certain conditions.

A good option if:

You are planning to sell the property or make a large payment, for example if you expect to receive an inheritance

You are planning to keep the property until the end of the term.


See all rates

Souvent plus élevé.

Often lower

What is the fixed payments option for variable-rate mortgages?

If you opt for fixed payments, you will always pay the same amount each month, making it easier to manage your budget.

When interest rates are lower, you’ll pay off more of your principal. If rates go up, your payment amount may need to be increased if it is not sufficient to cover the interest.

Applying for financing

Am I better off buying or renting?

Can’t decide whether you should buy or rent? Take our quiz to find out which option suits you best.

Don’t forget to check out our 6 mortgage calculators, which let you try out different scenarios to help choose the best options for you.

How much can I borrow to buy a home?

Before you start browsing the real estate listings, you’re going to need to work out how much you can borrow for your mortgage. In just a few clicks, our calculator can help you get an idea of the amount you can afford.

Don’t forget to check out our 6 mortgage calculators, which let you try out different scenarios to help choose the best options for you.

How do I estimate my monthly mortgage payments?

It’s easy! Run your numbers through our calculator and in just a few clicks you’ll have an idea of how much you'd be paying per month.

Don’t forget to check out our 6 mortgage calculators, which let you try out different scenarios to help choose the best options for you.

My downpayment is less than 20% of the value of the house I want to buy. What should I do?

If your downpayment is between 5% and 20% of the purchase price, your bank must take out mortgage loan insurance with either Genworth Financial Canada or the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), and you will have to pay a mortgage loan insurance premium in addition to your loan payments.

Did you know that you can use your RRSPs to make a downpayment? Learn more about the Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP).

Am I eligible for the Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP)?

To take advantage of the HBP, you must:

  • Be considered a first-time home buyer
  • Buy or build an eligible home in Canada
  • Occupy the property as your primary residence for the first year
  • Withdraw funds that have been in an RRSP for at least 90 days

Don't have an RRSP? An RRSP loan or line of credit can help you take advantage of the HBP.

How do I use my RRSPs to buy my first home?

You can use your RRSP to buy a home through the Home Buyers' Plan (HBP), which allows you to withdraw funds from your RRSP to use as a downpayment and repay the amount withdrawn later.

You can withdraw up to $25,000 per borrower tax-free, and you have 15 years to pay it back, interest-free. You’re basically lending yourself the money!

How can an RRSP loan or line of credit help me qualify for the HBP?

Finance your downpayment with an RRSP loan or line of credit5 to take advantage of the HBP.

Here's how:

  1. Take out an RRSP loan or line of credit.
  2. Put the money you borrowed in your RRSP (up to your contribution limit) and keep it there for 90 days. Interest charges may apply.
  3. Withdraw the amount you need from your RRSP. Note that you will need to pay back your loan in full when you make this withdrawal.
  4. Get a tax refund for contributing to your RRSP and put it toward your downpayment.
  5. Note that you have up to 15 years to pay back any funds you withdraw from your RRSP, starting after the first year.

What are the steps in the mortgage application process?

There are four main steps in the mortgage application process: preparing for the meeting with your mortgage advisor; gathering documents; submitting the application itself; and signing the official documents upon purchase.

To learn more about the application process, see Applying for a mortgage.

What documents do I need?

If you have a meeting coming up with your mortgage advisor, plan ahead to make the most of your time.

We’ve put together a list of the documents you’ll need: Preparing for your meeting.

What are the eligibility conditions?

During your first meeting, your mortgage advisor will ask you about your employment situation, your downpayment, your credit rating, and so on.

Are you a self-employed worker or business owner who is unable to provide standard proof of income documents? Our mortgage for the self-employed could be just what you’re looking for.

Do you have a poor credit rating or no credit history? Find out what it means to be a co‑borrower.

What is the difference between pre-approval and pre-qualification?

When you’re looking to buy a home, your mortgage advisor will make a general assessment of your borrowing capacity based on your income. This is called pre‑qualification.

Pre-approval, on the other hand, establishes your borrowing capacity more precisely, based on a number of factors including your credit score. The amount and the interest rate that National Bank offers you are guaranteed for 90 days. Pre‑approval is free, and there is no obligation to take out a loan afterwards.

Are you ready to get started? Get pre‑approved online in a few simple steps.

Can I make my downpayment online?

Absolutely! You can deposit your downpayment directly into your notary’s account using online banking. It’s completely secure and as easy as paying a bill!

Simply ask your notary for a coupon for funds transfer with a unique reference number. After logging in to online banking, add “Assyst Paiement” from the list of suppliers, along with the number indicated on the coupon. The notary will receive the payment in 72 hours or less.

Refinancing and renewal

My mortgage term is coming to an end. How do I renew it?

When it comes time to renew your mortgage, call us at 1‑877‑281‑0144 and leave a message including your loan number. A member of our mortgage renewal team will be pleased to call you back. They’re available Monday to Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (Eastern Time).

How long before the end of the term do I need to renew my mortgage?

renewal is an agreement on the conditions for a new term (duration, interest rate, payment frequency, etc.) once the current term is up.

You don't need to wait until the end of your term to renew your mortgage. By renewing early, you may be able to lock in an attractive rate. Call us now at 1‑877‑281‑0144 to talk about it.

Has your term expired? Contact your advisor as soon as possible, or call us on the number above.

What is mortgage refinancing?

Mortgage refinancing lets you borrow against the equity in your home. Refinancing allows you to borrow up to 80% of the estimated value of your property, minus the balance of your existing mortgage.

This can be an attractive option, because it provides a new source of credit to help finance your projects.

Good to know: If the value of your home has gone up over time, your home equity will also have increased.

How do I transfer my mortgage?

If you want to switch banks, sometimes you can transfer your existing mortgage instead of creating a new mortgage. In this case, the debts secured by the original mortgage must be repaid to the first lender. For help with your individual situation, don’t hesitate to contact your mortgage advisor.

Managing my mortgage

How can I pay off my mortgage faster?

Are you looking to pay off your closed mortgage more quickly? There are four ways to do it: increase your payment frequency, increase the amount of your payments, make additional payments, or make a prepayment. Learn more about accelerated mortgage repayment.

What is the cost of prepaying my mortgage?

There are three ways to find out:

Can I skip or delay a payment if my finances are stretched?

Unfortunately that’s not possible. However, if at some point you think you might have problems paying, contact your mortgage advisor to discuss solutions that could help.

I want to change my payments. How do I do it?

You’ll have to wait until the end of your term to change the payment conditions.

But with an All‑In‑One line of credit, you’re free to decide how much to repay each month. Only interest and insurance, if applicable, must be paid monthly.

How can I make a payment on principal?

To help you pay off your mortgage faster, you’re allowed to pay off up to 10% of the original principal once per calendar year.5 It’s up to you whether you make your payment on principal in one or several payments. You can do it via online banking, under My accounts summary.

How can I avoid prepayment charges?

Start by reading your mortgage contract carefully before you sign, and if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask your mortgage advisor. Here are some strategies to help you avoid charges:

  • Take advantage of your prepayment privileges each year.
  • Wait until the end of your term to prepay.
  • When it's time to renew your mortgage, think carefully about all your options.

To learn more about optimizing your payments, read our advice on accelerated mortgage repayment.

I’m selling my home. What happens to my mortgage?

You can either transfer or break your mortgage. If you choose to break your contract and you have a closed mortgage, you may have to pay a prepayment charge. There may also be a charge if you transfer your mortgage to another lender before the end of your term.

With an open mortgage, you can make a partial or full prepayment with no penalties.

Where can I find my mortgage statement?

If you’ve signed up for online statements, you can view your mortgage statement by visiting your online bank.

How do I view my mortgage transactions online?

To view your transaction statements online, log in to online banking and go to Manage my statements.

The transaction statements for your mortgage loan or home equity line of credit are normally sent by mail. Only the balance as of the last payment appears in online banking.

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Little details that matter

Legal disclaimers

TM All-In-One is a trademark of National Bank of Canada.

1. Subject to change without notice

2. Offer valid from January 17, 2011, to April 31, 2018. Limit of one cashback per All‑In‑One. The cashback will be credited to the client's All‑In‑One account at National Bank or will be granted in the form of a bank draft. If the loan is repaid in full, refinanced or renegotiated before expiry, a portion of the cashback prorated to the effective duration of the loan must be repaid. Employees of National Bank and its subsidiaries and entities are not eligible for this offer. National Bank reserves the right to end this offer at any time without notice. This offer cannot be combined with any other offer, promotion or advantage. All details and conditions are available in branches.

3. Subject to credit approval by National Bank.

4. Subject to not exceeding the maximum line of credit amount available, i.e., 65% of the value of the property.

5. Subject to credit approval by National Bank. Speak with your accountant, tax specialist or financial planner to see if this is the right strategy for you.

6. Certain restrictions apply. Please consult your loan contract.

Learn more about buying a home

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