Even tighter mortgage rules may be needed: IMF

Ottawa may have to do more to tame Canadian households’ high levels of debt, the International Monetary Fund said on Wednesday.

Ottawa’s latest round of tighter mortgage regulations came over summer when it lowered the amortization period to 25 years from 30 years and cut the amount of money consumers could borrow against their home, among other changes.

While the real estate industry has been blaming the changes for the recent slowdown in sales, particularly in Vancouver and Toronto when November sales fell 29 and 16 percent, respectively, the IMF says more may be needed, as the debt-to-income level continues to creep higher.

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