Upsizing or downsizing? Consider these financial factors when buying a new home

It's Spring, and that means "for sale" signs are sprouting up on lawns across Canada. Many homeowners wonder if it's better to buy a new house and then put their current home on the market - or to sell their current home and then look for a new house. There are pros and cons to each approach when buying a new home.


Buying first may be the right move in a seller's market, when eager buyers are snapping up houses quickly. In this type of environment, there's a risk that it may take many weeks or even months to win a bidding war on a house you like. If you sell first, you may have to settle for a less-than-ideal property in order to move out of your current house on your closing date - or be prepared to put your belongings in storage and rent while you keep looking.

On the other hand, selling first in any market may get you a higher price because you're not under pressure to take the first offer you receive - and if you're not happy with any of your offers, you have the flexibility to simply take your house off the market. Just as important, once you've inked the deal, you don't have to estimate how much you will get for your current house. You'll know precisely how much you have available to use for your new home.


Before you start packing up your belongings, don't forget one of the most important things that can travel with you to your new home: your mortgage. Nearly all CIBC mortgages are portable, which means you can transfer your existing balance and term to your new property. This is very valuable when interest rates are rising because you can keep your current rate for the transferred amount. It also means you won't have to pay any fees for closing out your mortgage early.

Here's how a portable mortgage works. Let's say your current mortgage has a balance of $100,000 at a fixed rate of 3.5% with two years remaining in your term. If you're downsizing, you can "port" the balance and keep that rate for the next two years. If you're upsizing and need an extra $75,000, you can still "port" $100,000 at 3.5% for the next two years. Then you can add $75,000 to your mortgage at today's interest rate. If rates are higher now than when you took out your mortgage, the blended rate will be lower than if you had taken out a new $175,000 mortgage.


Your CIBC Financial Advisor can help you determine what you can afford, explain the ins and outs of your mortgage and help you achieve a financially smooth transition to your new home.

Switch and be mortgage free faster*

With our customized mortgage solutions, great rates and cash back, it can make sense to switch to a CIBC mortgage today.

Transfer-in your mortgage to CIBC for free1 today and receive:

  • A great low variable rate2 on a five-year CIBC Variable Flex Mortgage®2 or a competitive fixed rate on a five-year fixed-rate closed mortgage
  • $4,000 cash back3 to make a lump-sum payment towards your balance (based on a $200,000 mortgage)4
  • Flexible payment options to help you get even more savings and pay down more of your mortgage principal

Other terms and cash back amounts are available.4 Making the switch to a CIBC mortgage is easy and convenient. We'll contact your current institution, complete the paperwork for you and transfer your existing mortgage for free - we don't charge legal, appraisal or transfer-in fees. Talk to your CIBC Financial Advisor to get the CIBC mortgage that is right for you.

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