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Everything you always wanted to know about your mortgage

Sam Taylor loved helping people which is why she started her career as a social worker. But after almost three decades, Sam was burnt out and needed out. After a great deal of soul-searching she decided to start her own home staging business. “Over the years more and more people have asked for my help,” she explains. “I have a flare for it.” To start and grow her own business, however, she needs capital. To get capital she needs to sell her home—and that means breaking her fixed-rate mortgage.

What Sam found out shocked her. She was on the hook for almost $18,000 in fees, as a penalty for breaking her mortgage early. Turns out, breaking up (with your mortgage) really is hard to do. And Sam was lucky. According to the Financial Post, Tyler Bollhorn, a personal finance author who decided to move from Kelowna, B.C. to Hawaii, was shocked when he learned he’d have to pay more than $150,000 to break his mortgage. “I got stuck with a pretty good penalty because I never read the fine print,” he says.

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