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Valko Financial Ltd.

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10 Things you CAN do right now – #COVID19

1. It is irresponsible for us to guess at how long the COVID-19 pandemic will be with us.  What we do know for certain is that until there is a vaccine developed it is going to be an issue and until there is an anti-viral treatment we will be in self-isolation. This is emotionally and mentally draining for people and it is ok, it is allowed to be. I truly feel it is important in order to ensure that a few things are taken care of while we are still able, in order to assist in reducing the stresses that you will feel: -Consolidate Debts to improve cashflow -Place a Secured Line of Credit on a property when available to help with any emergency situations that might come up -Take out equity if you feel you need some additional money set aside 2. If you have found your income negatively …
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Recent Mortgage News

    CMHC commits additional $100bn to Insured Mortgage Purchase Program The agency expands its mortgage-buying program from the initial $50bn… Hundreds of thousands of homeowners seek mortgage payment deferral Canada’s big six banks report higher volumes of mortgage-related calls since relief plan was introduced…. A third of Canadians fear not meeting housing expenses due to COVID-19 Survey also says more than 40% lost their jobs or live with someone who has… Iqaluit condo owners see sharp rise in commercial insurance premiums Insurance companies being scared out of the city largely contributes to the increase…

Houses rising

Why Are Mortgage Rates Rising?

Over the past month, the Bank of Canada has lowered its overnight rate by a whopping 1.5 percentage points to a mere 0.25%. Many people expected mortgage rates to fall equivalently. The banks have reduced prime rates by the full 150 basis points (bps). But, since the second Bank of Canada rate cut on March 13, banks and other lenders have hiked mortgage rates for fixed- and variable-rate loans. That’s not what happens typically when the Bank cuts its overnight rate. But these are extraordinary times. The Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted everything, shutting down the entire global economy and damaging business and consumer confidence. No one knows when it will end. This degree of uncertainty and the risk to our health is profoundly unnerving.   Most businesses have ground to a halt, so unemployment has surged. Hourly workers and many of the self-employed have found themselves with no income for an …
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We Are Here for You!

We can still be reached by email, phone, text and we are now utilizing video-conferencing to better serve you while we observe the order for social distancing. We are NOT shut down. We are doing everything we can to make sure that business continues to run smoothly and that your interests and concerns are made a priority. Stay home.  Be safe.  Let’s arrange a call or video chat. WE ARE HERE FOR YOU     We, as a team, are working responsibly and diligently setting up virtual appointments by phone and video call with those who have questions or concerns. Please feel free to contact us! We are #HereforYou Update from The Valko Team: With the current outbreak of COVID-19. we wanted to take this opportunity to let you know that The Valko Team is here to assist you with your mortgage needs and address any questions or concerns you may …
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5 Ways to Rewire Your Brain to Deal With Coronavirus Stress – from Psychology Today

Staying mindful and connected to loved ones can help you calm down – from Psychology Today   The novel coronavirus epidemic has hit the world with a vengeance, creating widespread illness, fear, panic, uncertainty, and death. In many ways, it is the perfect storm of conditions to trigger automatic, primitive brain reactions to danger. It is life-threatening, invisible, unfamiliar, and unpredictable. These are all the conditions likely to stir up your brain’s threat detection system.   How Your Brain Responds to a Threat When your brain perceives a threat, a structure called the amygdala hijacks the brain into emergency mode. The thinking centers of your brain, located in your prefrontal cortex, go partially or fully offline, and the primitive, emotional brain takes over. The primitive, emotional centers of your brain are hardwired to create a “fight, flight, or freeze” response when they perceive a threat to your survival.   Adrenaline and cortisol flood the nervous system, …
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Fed Cuts Overnight Rate One Percentage Point But Markets Plummet

In an unprecedented Sunday afternoon meeting, the US Federal Reserve cut their key policy rate by 100 basis points (bps) to a level of 0%-to-0.25% (see chart below). Also, the Committee announced increased access to the discount window where the Fed makes loans to banks. The Fed is the lender-of-last-resort and is signalling that it will provide liquidity wherever needed. As well, with interest rates already so low, the Fed is well aware that rate cuts can only do so much. Thus, they are returning to quantitative easing–the buying of large volumes of U.S. government Treasury bills and bonds as well as mortgage-backed securities (MBS), to inject liquidity into the financial system. The Treasury and US MBS markets are usually the deepest, most liquid markets in the world. But over the past two weeks, liquidity has dried up. Financial instability has risen sharply with the high level of volatility. Banks …
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Extraordinary Coordinated Policy Actions To Ease the Economic Impact of Pandemic In Canada

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Canada would introduce a “significant” fiscal stimulus package, as part of a coordinated effort with other Group of Seven countries to counter the virus-driven global economic slowdown and calm markets. In an exceptional press conference held at 2 pm today, Finance Minister Morneau sat at the side of the Governor of the Bank of Canada, and the head of the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) to announce measures to soothe financial markets, boost confidence and support the Canadian economy. Only nine days after the Bank of Canada cut the overnight policy rate by 50 basis points to 1.25%, Governor Poloz announced another 50 bps reduction in the policy rate to a level of 0.75%. Here is the Bank of Canada’s official statement: “The Bank of Canada today lowered its target for the overnight rate by 50 basis points to ¾%. The Bank Rate is correspondingly …
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Global Markets in Turmoil, Oil Prices Plunge Along With Yields

    Markets shuddered in the face of a price war for oil and the economic fallout from the growing outbreak of coronavirus. Frightened investors poured into haven assets sending yields to unprecedented lows. Oil prices tumbled 30% after Saudi Arabia said it would cut most of its oil prices and boost output when Russia refused to join OPEC in propping up prices (see chart below). Foreign exchange markets convulsed, as the steep drops in oil and share prices overnight sparked a flight from commodity-linked currencies into the perceived safety of the Japanese yen and the US dollar. The Canadian dollar fell to 0.7362 as of this writing. The Government of Canada 5-year bond yield was as low as 0.284% overnight but has since recovered roughly 0.535%, still well below Friday’s closing level of approximately 0.65% (second chart below). Stock prices have fallen very sharply in the first hour of …
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BREAKING NEWS: Bank of Canada lowers overnight rate target to 1 ¼ percent

The Bank of Canada today lowered its target for the overnight rate by 50 basis points to 1 ¼ percent. The Bank Rate is correspondingly 1 ½ percent and the deposit rate is 1 percent. The Bank of Canada notes: “While Canada’s economy has been operating close to potential with inflation on target, the COVID-19 virus is a material negative shock to the Canadian and global outlooks, and monetary and fiscal authorities are responding.” Furthermore, the bank adds that “as the situation evolves, Governing Council stands ready to adjust monetary policy further if required to support economic growth and keep inflation on target. While markets continue to function well, the Bank will continue to ensure that the Canadian financial system has sufficient liquidity.”

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