Trish & Cheryl Niagara Real Estate Agents Niagara on the Lake Realty

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Bridge Financing-What you need to know

Bridge Loans – one way to reduce the stress of moving!


Bridge loans have become a very popular way to take possession of that new home without the stress of packing, moving and unpacking all on one day.  The stress of waiting for the deal to close before being able to get procession and if there is a domino happening (more than one house closing for the deal to happen) it may not happen to late on the day.  People are closing 2 or 3 weeks ahead of time to allow for renovations.


Bridge loans are short-term loans that bridge the gap between two different closing dates, more commonly used when an existing homeowner sells their home, and buys another home, with two different closing dates.   Best of all, it’s really inexpensive!

More buyers are taking a more relaxed approach.   Bridge Loans are gaining in popularity.. It allows for a more relaxed move over a 2 or 3 day period… or in the case of renovations, maybe 2 or 3 weeks.    It’s certainly less stressful and could even save you money if you are doing a bigger renovation (contractors could end up charging you a little more if they have to deal with a family living in the house during the renovations or if they are rushed).


One example on how much Bridge Financing works and what it costs…


In this example we’ll use a couple that sold property for $400k with a closing on November 1.   There is an existing mortgage of $250k.    They bought another house for $600k.   Closing is November 22.  They will spend $50k in renovations for a new kitchen and bathroom.   They want a $450k mortgage to cover renovations closing costs and take out some money for personal use. 

  Here’s how the Bridge loan works:


•Bridge loan amount would be $150k… we calculate this by taking the Purchase price ($600k) less the new mortgage amount ($450k).

•Rate of interest will vary but it’s around Prime plus 2.00% (today’s prime rate is 3.00%).

•Lender admin fees range from $250 to $500.

•Legal fees vary depending on Lender and Lawyer… $200 to $400.

•Interest costs are $20.55 per day.  Total interest would be $287.70.

•Overall total cost of the Bridge Loan would be between $737 and $1200 depending on your lawyer’s legal fees and Lender admin fees.


Some qualification, limitations and risks when getting a Bridge Loan

•Bridge Loans are only offered by the mortgage provider for your new home.  It’s a product most Banks don’t like to offer as there is really no profit for them.  They get nervous about the possibility of your existing home not closing.   There is some exposure and risk to the Bank… it’s limited but it’s there.

•Your lawyer will be required to provide an undertaking to register a mortgage if the sale of your existing home collapses (that’s not a common occurrence but it can happen).

•Speaking of sales… you must have entered into a firm sale on your current home to qualify for a Bridge Loan.

•Lenders will only offer a Bridge Loan equal to the down payment required for your new home.  This amount cannot be greater than the equity remaining in your current home.

•There is also the option of obtaining Private Lender bridge financing but this is more expensive and should only be considered as a last alternative.


Standing back and looking at the big picture, I think most of us would be happy to pay $700 to $2,000 for sake of being able to have an empty house for 2 to 4 weeks to do a clean up or reno, etc.


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