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How Long Should it Take to pay off a Mortgage?

“The faster you pay off a mortgage, the more you save in interest,” says Louis-François Éthier, product manager at National Bank.

The truth is, paying off a $100,000 mortgage in a short period of time is extremely difficult without both a sizable and stable income, and relatively few expenses. A small regular payment stretched out over a longer amortization period (the total time required to pay off the mortgage) is usually considered an expensive strategy. This is because mortgage payments mostly cover interest and little of the principal until the interest is paid, so it can take decades to pay off the balance.

“The amount of your mortgage payments should be based on your overall budget,” says Louis-François Éthier.

How much of your budget should go toward mortgage payments?

Most financial institutions recommend that no more than 30% of your total budget go towards mortgage payments, municipal taxes, and heating. “It’s the classic ratio in the industry: mortgage to total debt,” says Mr. Éthier. “It’s crucial to also consider other debts, such as car loans and balances on credit cards. Mortgage counsellors can help you make the right choice.”

Of course, the expected time if would take to pay off the mortgage directly influences the amount that we spend on our regular payments. Continue reading

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How to Install a Floating Parquet Floor

A floating parquet floor is still quite popular and gains in quality. Its most significant asset is that it suits almost any decor. Moreover, its installation is relatively straightforward. Here are the basic guidelines.

  • A few days before the installation, lay the planks in the specific room to allow them to get acclimated.
  • Make sure the solid base on which the floor will be installed has no trace of moisture.
  • There is no need to remove the existing floor (unless it is carpeting) to install the floating parquet floor as long as it is properly levelled so that the surface is clean and smooth.
  • You will need to install a membrane to stifle sounds and vibrations. It will also act as a thermal insulator. It can be made of polyethylene foam or cork.
  • When laying the planks, make sure to leave a gap of approximately 10 millimetres between the floor and wall to allow the wood to move freely when humidity and temperature variations force it to expand. Otherwise, the planks will curl.
  • Begin with the straightest and longest wall, uninterrupted by the door for example, and finish with the wall with the most cut-outs. Thus, the imperfections will show less.
  • All kinds of spacers, long ruler or string, can help you keep a consistent gap around the room’s perimeter. Baseboards or quarter-round moldings will hide the joint along the walls.

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Velvet, Satin and Upholstered Furniture

Absolutely majestic! Include a myriad of velvet accents and upholstered leather furniture to your bedroom or living room and you will achieve a captivating design, especially if you add a touch of satin to the decor. Classic elegance, you say? Better! A heavenly space.

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Velvet fabric and upholstered furniture, side by side, offers ultimate elegance. It’s timeless. Even after centuries, this style is still in vogue. A long time ago, in palaces and mansions, marble was also part of the decor, and that says it all. Elegance attracts elegance. Continue reading

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Sustainable Homes Love Cork

A plant product that is sustainable, recyclable and rot-proof: cork is sought after as a floor covering and is considered one of the most efficient insulating material for walls, doors, roofs and floors. In addition, it looks beautiful and inviting. In short, it’s a God-given product.

Let’s start with the basics. Cork is often used as a subfloor for a hardwood or floating floor because of its sound and crush-resistant properties and its elasticity. A more discreet role, but an efficient one, nonetheless.

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Far from being unattractive, cork is most usually used above ground, in the form of slabs, as a flooring material. It has numerous qualities. It is flexible, effective against vibrations, soft to the touch, and pleasant to look at. A dozen shades, if not more, are available on the market. Continue reading

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Canada’s new mortgage rules – What you need to know

On January 1, 2018, the revised Guideline B-20 came into effect, governed by the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI). The changes to Guideline B-20 reinforce OSFI’s expectation that federally regulated mortgage lenders (FRML) remain vigilant in their mortgage underwriting practices. The full outline of the revised Guideline can be found on their website.

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How do these new changes affect you?

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Articles on home financing, home decor & renovations