Can You Get a Mortgage After a Debt Management Plan?

Getting Approved For a Mortgage After a Debt Management Plan (DMP)

Navigating the world of finance can be challenging, particularly when you’re burdened by debt. One common question many of us ponder is, “Can you get a mortgage after a debt management plan?” In this article, we’ll delve into the complexities of debt management plans (DMPs) and their potential impact on your ability to secure a mortgage.

Understanding Debt Management Plans

In Canada, many people grapple with various types of debt, from credit card bills, car loans, to student loan debt. With the upsurge in living expenses and fluctuation in employment due to the COVID-19 pandemic, managing these debts has become increasingly difficult.

A debt management plan can provide a lifeline for those struggling to keep up with their debt payments. Credit counsellors can help you design an individual debt strategy to alleviate your eligible debts. This involves negotiating a payment schedule with your creditors, often with reduced interest rates, leading to a significant decrease in your monthly payments.

The Impact of Debt Management Plans on Credit

Like any debt solution, a DMP will have an effect on your credit. However, compared to more severe measures such as bankruptcy or a consumer proposal, a DMP’s impact is less direct. It’s important to note that DMPs are not an insolvency measure, yet they do limit your access to credit.

Making payments through a DMP can, in fact, positively impact your credit score in the long run. This is because your credit utilization rate decreases as you reduce your access to credit. However, lenders, including those offering mortgages, might hesitate to lend to you if they see a DMP listed on your credit report.

Securing a New Mortgage While on a Debt Management Plan

The question of acquiring a new mortgage while on a DMP is a complex one. Typically, your credit counsellor will advise against taking on new debt during your DMP. However, a DMP is not legally binding, so you won’t face legal consequences if you choose to apply for a mortgage.

Your lender, however, might not view your application favorably. Even if they approve your loan, you might face higher interest rates or less favorable loan terms. It’s also essential to note that you cannot include secured debts, such as an existing mortgage, in your DMP.

The Timing of Buying a House After a Debt Management Plan

You might be wondering when you can buy a house after a debt management plan. While you technically can apply for a mortgage while on a DMP, you might not get the terms you desire. The mark of a DMP on your credit report might lead to less favorable terms such as higher interest rates, larger deposit requirements, or shorter terms.

Ideally, you should wait at least two years after the completion of your DMP before applying for a mortgage. This improves your chances of securing a mortgage under more favorable conditions.

The Borrowing Capacity After a Debt Management Plan

The amount you can borrow after a DMP depends on several factors. It’s recommended to spend some time rehabilitating your credit before taking out new loans. Here are a few things to consider before borrowing money after a DMP:

Enhancing Your Credit Score

There are several ways to improve your credit score, such as:


  • Making your current payments on time;
  • Limiting your credit applications;
  • Building a strong credit history over time;
  • Waiting for at least two years so that your DMP is removed from your credit file;
  • Utilizing various types of credit.

Saving for a Larger Deposit

Mortgage lenders might be more willing to lend to you if you can put down a larger deposit. This demonstrates your financial capacity and commitment, making you a less risky borrower.

Wrapping Up

While debt management plans can temporarily restrict your access to credit, they can also help you manage and pay off your debts, often leading to an overall improvement in your credit over time.

Securing a mortgage after a DMP is achievable with careful planning, discipline, research, and patience. The potential difficulty in obtaining a mortgage after a DMP should not deter you from enrolling in a DMP if your debt situation calls for it.

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