The process of buying your first home can be intimidating, especially if you’re young and have a relatively brief financial history. It takes time to save up for a down payment, build good credit and establish a strong relationship with your financial institution — and as we all know, none of this happens overnight or without effort. When you go to a lender and ask for something as significant as a mortgage in your 20s, when your career and financial plan are still developing, it’s natural to wonder if you’ll actually get approved.


Good news: your chances are pretty good. While it may be daunting to apply for a mortgage in your 20s, Interior Savings has solutions for Canadians in all stages of life. Here’s how to get a mortgage approval in your 20s — if you have any questions, please reach out to our team for personalized advice.

Get ready to apply

If you plan on buying a home in the near future, there are steps you can take to improve your chances of getting approved for a mortgage. Check your credit score and ensure that you’re making all bill payments on time and in full. Make an effort to pay off any outstanding debts (particularly consumer debt like credit cards and personal loans) and save as much money as you can for a down payment. The stronger your financial position is when you apply, the better your chances of securing a mortgage at a great rate.


It’s also important to understand the difference between pre-qualifying for a mortgage and getting a mortgage pre-approved by your lender. Here’s a great explanation from our team.

Know your options

Mortgages are not a one-size-fits-all scenario, and it’s important to understand your own needs as well as your options. There are cash back mortgages, mortgages designed for first time home buyers, and construction mortgages designed for new builds and custom homes. There’s also a Family First mortgage that incorporates the financial backing of a parent or other family member — more on that below.


Another option to consider is borrowing funds from your RRSP to make a down payment on your first home. The federal government allows individuals to withdraw funds from their RRSP without penalty if the money is going towards the purchase of their first home. There are limits to how much can be borrowed, and these funds must be paid back into the RRSP within a specified timeframe. The details of this program are available here.

Secure family support if needed

If you’re unable to successfully obtain a mortgage approval on your own or don’t have sufficient savings for a down payment, consider asking a parent or other family member to co-sign your application. There are two ways a person can co-sign your mortgage: as a co-borrower who is named on the title of the property or as a guarantor who agrees to take over the loan if you default on payment. The primary benefit of having a co-signer is that it increases the income assessed by your lender and may lead to the approval (and buying power) that you want. Just make sure you can truly afford to carry the cost of your mortgage — if your income truly isn’t enough to cover monthly expenses, it’s best to wait or look at less expensive housing options.


If you’re confident that you can afford monthly mortgage payments but are having trouble getting financial approval on your own, Interior Savings has a Family First mortgage solution that allows a parent, grandparent or other family member to help you secure both a loan for a down payment and the actual mortgage loan. Essentially, the co-signer agrees to back a lump sum loan for your down payment as well as the mortgage loan itself. This is an excellent opportunity for older family members to help younger family members get into the housing market without offering a financial gift from their own savings. To learn more about this option, please contact an Interior Savings advisor in your region.


There are additional complexities to home ownership that require personalized financial advice, from mortgage agreements to home insurance and taxation. Our team can help answer your questions, introduce new ideas and make recommendations based on your specific needs, goals and financial situation. This is what our advisors are here for, so please don’t hesitate to reach out for guidance. When all is said and done, we want to see you with those new house keys in hand.

Book an appointment at the branch nearest you

Call us at 1-855-220-2580

For after-hours service contact one of our Mortgage Specialists.