What is the minimum down payment needed for a home in Canada?

A minimum down payment of 5% is required to purchase a home, subject to certain maximum price restrictions. For instance, in the Greater Vancouver area the maximum purchase price with 5% down is $250,000. Any purchase price in excess of $250,000 requires a minimum of 10% as a down payment. In addition to the down payment, you must also be able to show that you can cover the applicable closing costs (i.e. legal fees and disbursements, appraisal fees and a survey certificate, where applicable).

Regardless of the amount of your down payment, at least 5% of it must be from your own cash resources or a gift from a family member. It cannot be borrowed.

Lenders will generally accept a gift from a family member as an acceptable down payment provided a letter stating it is a true gift, not a loan, is signed by the donor. Where the mortgage loan insurance is provided by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), the gift money must be in the your possession before the application is sent in to CMHC for approval.

Mortgages with less than 20% down must have mortgage loan insurance provided by either CMHC or GE.

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