Big banks ease mortgage applications for foreign buyers probe reveals

Foreign home buyers can secure mortgages with some of Canada’s biggest lenders without proof of income according to an investigation by the Globe and Mail.

The probe has discovered from internal guideline documents at Scotiabank that, where a downpayment of at least 50 per cent is made, there is no income check required. At BMO no income check is needed for mortgages up to $2 million when a downpayment is at least 35 per cent. BMO also requires a year’s mortgage payments available when the loan is issued.

Critics say that the lenders’ rules mean that local buyers are unfairly disadvantaged however Scotiabank and BMO have stressed that their checks on foreign borrowers are diligent.

The Globe and Mail says that its investigation requested income verification guidelines from TD, RBC, CIBC and HSBC but was did not receive specific information.

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