#16 – The Garage Talks Mortgages


In this episode, the guys wade into muddy mortgage waters. HELOCs, rates, insurance, terms, renewals there’s too much to cover for one episode. We’ll sample a few new beers as usual too. If you found this podcast you’re probably familiar with the FI/RE movement that has grown in popularity recently. Here at the FI Garage, we’re all on the path to FI, however, we consider the RE part optional.

Beer #1 – Heineken [0:35]

Advice from the Money Mechanic: Don’t buy Heineken bottles [1:25]

Useful Tool – Don’t Jump into a Cash Rewards Program [2:30]

See Reading List

Mortgages [7:30]

  • How much down? [8:30]
    • CMHC Insurance is required on any mortgage with less than 20 percent down
  • Learn about mortgages and how much you will pay [10:30]
  • Mortgage Broker or Bank? [12:15]
  • Consider the Terms of the Mortgage, Not Only the Rate [16:00]
    • Cost of Breaking Mortgage Before the Term is Up [16:50]
    • Variable or Fixed Rate [17:10]
    • Prepayment [18:30]
    • Re-advanceable [20:50, 33:30]
  • What is a Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) [21:00]
    • Accountant’s HELOC Analogy [24:00, 34:10, 34:50]
    • Might have to change lenders and/or re-qualify [33:00]
  • CIBC is Looking for Mortgage Business [25:00]
  • Hiker and his Bernese Mountain Dog Rescued After Night on Buntzen Lake Trail [36:00]
  • Why do the members of the garage have HELOCs? [38:00]
    • To Free Up Capital for Further Investing
  • Smith Maneuver [39:00]
  • Mortgage protection insurance vs life & disability insurance [40:00]
  • Payment Frequency [45:30]
Beer #2 –Hoyne Pilsner [29:00]
Stupid Money Move [48:30]

Not shopping around for the best mortgage rate on renewal a form of Paying Extra for Convienance

Reading List

Best Cash Back Apps: How to Get Rebates and Rewards from Your Purchases via onlinemoneypage

The 20 Best Cash Back Apps to Save Money When Shopping via Savvy New Canadians


  1. For anyone who is considering getting a re-advancing mortgage it is worth checking out National Bank if you fall into one of their ‘professional’ categories.


    HELOC portion of the loan as low as prime and un-secured line of credit (optional) at prime-.25%.

    Two negatives are you MUST take out one of their credit cards, minimum fee is $75/year and there is a $8/month fee for having the account. If you are looking at doing the Smith Maneuver or something similar the savings on the HELOC interest will easily pay for these fees.

    I believe the monthly fee can be added to any interest when adding up the decrease in income for tax time (do your own research, I have not tested this myself).

    1. Hand’t looked at national bank before, seems like they have a pretty good program going if you fall into those categories. A nice factor is the minimum for fees to be waived is pretty low at $2,500. The other thing I was reading that I really liked was being able to split your mortgage out into more manageable chunks. I think being able to put a smaller amount into a more aggressive payment schedule could really help people pay off their mortgages quicker.

      1. An interesting benefit of their investment platform (I’m not currently using it) is you can sell ETF’s for free in 100 unit lots.

        This would be an interesting option for someone outside of the accumulation phase. The flip side, buying 100 unit lots for free, is not as appealing due to the price of many ETF’s.

        1. Be interesting to see what costs would be associated if you were to transfer over existing ETF accounts. I agree only being able to buy for free in 100 unit lots is not ideal but if you could sell in 100 lots for free that could be a big benefit in someones meltdown strategy.

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