February 23, 2024 CMSpeople

B-ing There for You: A Guide to B-Lender Mortgages in Canada

Buying a home in Canada is a dream for many, but navigating the mortgage maze can be daunting. And if you already own a home, perhaps a mortgage refinance is becoming a challenge with the big banks. If you’ve encountered roadblocks with traditional banks/lenders due to credit score, income, or down payment constraints, B lenders might offer a lifeline. But before diving in, understanding the ins and outs is crucial.


Who are B Lenders?

Unlike the big banks (“A” lenders), B lenders are non-big bank financial institutions offering mortgages to borrowers who don’t meet the stricter criteria of their A counterparts. They cater to individuals with:

Lower credit scores: B lenders generally accept scores below the 600 minimum often required by most A lenders.

Non-traditional income: Self-employed individuals, recent immigrants, or those with variable income streams may find B lenders more flexible.

Higher debt ratios: If your debt-to-income ratio exceeds the 44% threshold for A lenders, B lenders will have options for you.


Pros and Cons of B Lender Mortgages:


Accessibility: B lenders offer a chance for homeownership, for those excluded by traditional bank and lenders.

Lenient criteria: They consider factors beyond the credit score, like future earning potential or alternative income sources.

Shorter terms: B lender mortgages often have 1–3-year terms, encouraging quicker improvement and transition to A lenders.



Higher interest rates: B lenders compensate for increased risk with significantly higher interest rates compared to A lenders.

Larger down payments: All B lenders require a minimum down payment of 20%, unlike the 5% allowed by A lenders for purchases under $1 million.

Fees and penalties: Expect higher origination fees (and possible higher prepayment penalties, and other charges depending on the lender)

Limited product selection: B lender mortgage options might be less diverse than those offered by traditional banks and lenders.


Is a B Lender Mortgage Right for You?

Carefully consider your situation before taking the B lender route. Here are some key questions to ask your mortgage broker:

  • Can you afford the higher interest rates and fees?
  • Is the shorter term a realistic timeline for improving your credit and income?
  • Are there alternative options like government programs or credit counseling?


Exploring B Lenders:

If you decide to pursue a B lender mortgage, research thoroughly. Here are some tips:

  • Have your mortgage broker compare rates and terms from multiple lenders.
  • Read the terms and conditions and understand all fees and penalties – with the help of your mortgage broker.
  • Seek advice from a mortgage broker specializing in B lenders. In other words, how much B business do they do on an annual basis? Do they understand the mortgage products available across most B lenders? You want to work with someone who has experience and takes the time to update themselves on changes in underwriting.


Remember: You must go through a licensed mortgage broker to obtain a mortgage through a B lender. B lender mortgages can be valuable solutions, but they’re not a magic bullet. Approach them with an open mind, understand the implications (if any), and ensure they align with your long-term financial goals. By being informed and making responsible choices, you can turn a B lender mortgage into a stepping stone towards achieving your homeownership dreams.


For more information on B-Lender mortgages, check out this other blog written by CMS: B Lender Mortgage in Canada: Pros and Cons (cmsmortgages.ca)

Call us for best representation you can get in this industry! (905) 455-5005

Call Now Button