Learn About The CMHC Program For Self-Employed People

Learn About The CMHC Program For Self-Employed People

The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is a national housing organization that promotes the housing industry and provides affordable and sustainable housing financing to Canadian citizens. CMHC offers a variety of services and products to support homeownership, including mortgage insurance, housing research, and financing options.


CMHC offers a program for self-employed borrowers (who are not working under someone else but independently, like freelancers, sole proprietors, independent contractors, consultants, artists, and creative professionals). The self-employed program by CMHC allows self-employed individuals to access mortgage financing without having to prove their traditional income documentation.

Self-Employed People

Purpose of the CMHC Program

Provide Affordable Housing

The CMHC Program is a government initiative that aims to provide Canadians with affordable housing options. The government took the initiative with the vision that everyone should own their home.

Increase Homeownership

The CMHC’s program for self-employed people works to increase homeownership options for individuals and families across the nation through several programs and initiatives.

Offer Financial Assistance

The CMHC collaborates with lenders, developers, and other stakeholders to offer financial assistance and resources to support self-employed Canadians in achieving their housing objectives, like mortgage loan insurance, affordable housing programs, research and data, and more.

CMHC Program

Benefits of The CMHC Program

Here Are Some Key Features of The CMHC Self-Employed Mortgage Program:

1) Income Documentation

Self-employed applicants can submit alternative forms of income validation, such as business financial statements, contracts, invoices, and bank statements, in place of traditional income documentation, such as T1 General Tax forms.

2) Minimum Down Payment Requirements

You must make a minimum down payment to get mortgage loan insurance. The amount of the down payment is calculated by keeping in mind the cost of buying the house. 

  • If the house costs $500,000 or less, then you'll need to make a minimum down payment of 5%. 
  • If the house costs more than $500,000, you will be required to make a down payment of at least 5% on the first $500,000 and 10% on the remaining sum.
  • Mortgage loan insurance is not offered for homes costing $1,000,000 or more.

3) Credit Score

A credit score of at least 600 is required. This score shows that the borrower has a good credit history and is likely to repay the loan on time.

If your credit score is below 600, then you may need to work on improving it before applying for a loan. 

However, if your score is above 600, you may have a better chance of being approved for a loan and receiving favorable terms and interest rates. 

It is important to remember that a good credit score is not the only factor that lenders consider when evaluating loan applications, so be sure to also have a stable income and a low debt-to-income ratio.

4) Maximum Loan Amount

To be eligible for CMHC mortgage loan insurance, the valuation/price of the property must be less than $1 million. Additionally, the property must be located in Canada. 

Therefore, if you are looking to obtain CMHC mortgage loan insurance, you must ensure that the property you are interested in purchasing meets these eligibility criteria.

5) Limits on Debt Service Ratios

The maximum gross debt service ratio (GDS) allowed is 39%, meaning that the percentage of your gross income that goes towards housing shouldn't be higher than that. 

When housing costs and other debts are taken into account concerning your gross income, the total debt service ratio (TDS) shouldn't be higher than 44%. 

Lenders frequently use this to assess your capacity to pay back a mortgage.

6) Amortization Period

25 years is the maximum amortization period. This means that the length of time it takes to pay off your mortgage cannot exceed 25 years. In Canada, the 25-year amortization period is standard practice for most mortgages. This allows homeowners to pay off their mortgage in a reasonable amount of time without accruing too much interest. 

7) Repayment

The CMHC Self-Employed Program offers flexible options for repayment. They can choose the repayment schedule that works best for them by having the choice of bi-weekly or monthly payments, ensuring a simple and convenient mortgage experience. Thanks to this flexibility, self-employed people can effectively manage their mortgage payments and match them to their income streams. 

The CMHC Self-Employed Program is an excellent option for self-employed individuals looking to purchase a home. It offers key features such as income documentation, minimum down payment requirements, credit score considerations, maximum loan amounts, debt service ratio limits, amortization periods, and repayment options. Additionally, certified mortgage brokers in Vancouver, Surrey, British Columbia, serve as invaluable allies to help borrowers secure favorable terms and interest rates. Contact Alpha mortgage brokers