CIBC offers low interest rates for home builders
September 21, 2012
CIBC offers low interest rates for home builders

CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank is offering customers planning on building homes for the first time, an attractive, low interest rate.{{more}}

At a launch of the mortgage package on Tuesday, at their headquarters on Halifax Street, the bank announced that it will be offering an interest rate of 5.99 per cent fixed for three years for new construction or construction already in progress.

Those taking up the offer also qualify for a number of additional benefits, including 50 per cent off the commitment fee, a pre-approved CIBC FirstCaribbean VISA credit and debit card and free mobile and Internet banking.

Country Manager Elroy John explained that the loan is expected to attract an interest rate of 6.99 per cent during the construction phase, which is limited to 12 months.

“Since its inception, CIBC has prided itself in being a partner with its communities and being responsive to the needs of those communities,” John said.

“Despite the economic challenges facing our economies around the region from which we have emerged unscathed, we have continued to invest in our customers,” he continued.

“We expect with this offer, we will play our part in efforts across various sectors of our community and stimulating the economy through providing a boost to the construction sector.”

Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves applauded the initiative, adding that interest rates in the region, particularly within the member states of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) have been too high.

He recently made a public call for banks to review interest rates, saying that he could not legislate the lending rate, but rather that was something that the market had to decide.

But there are low lending rates available in the western world, he said, and he is watching to see what can take place here.

“I am going to continue to jawbone the banks,” the prime minister said.

He explained that financial institutions such as CIBC/FCIB were at an advantage over other stand alone, smaller ones, in that smaller institutions relied primarily on their deposits for sums of money to be made available as loans.

Institutions such as CIBC/FCIB however, have funding sources beyond the deposits here and they have sources that are cheaper.

But, as he lauded the bank’s initiative, he said that he would have liked to see the promotion extend past the November 30, 2012 date.

He said that the offer was being made available for a longer time in neighbouring St Lucia.

“St Vincent and the Grenadines cannot be 21 miles from St Lucia and you offer a longer period to St Lucia and a shorter period to St Vincent,” Gonsalves said.

He continued, saying that he hoped that the other banks were listening and would look to do the same.

“The horses are out of the stable and let us see the competition taking place,” the prime minister said. (DD)