The Trinidad and Tobago Mortage Finance Company (TTMF) has been in operation since 1961. It was originally a partnership between the Government of Trinidad and Tobago and the Colonial Development Corporation of the United Kingdom. Today, it is jointly owned by the Government and the National Insurance Board.
TTMF’s original mission is to make residential mortgage financing available to low and middle-income households. Consistent with this mission, TTMF is a major provider of mortgage financing for government-constructed housing. TTMF has however, broadened its activities and now also makes large mortgage loans for private housing. TTMF does not accept deposits and its activities are financed through the issuance of long-term bonds and more recently, through a long-term loan from the Inter-American Development Bank.
The sole public sector mortgage institution, TTMF, is the principal source of financing for the recent significant expansion of the public sector housing program.
Since 2003/2004, the Government has constructed just over 8,200 single and multi-family units. The housing program is geared towards low and middle-income groups and involves a sizable interest rate subsidy administered through the TTMF.The latest variant of the program announced in the last budget targets families with a maximum household income of $8,000 per month and covers mortgage loans up to $500,000 with the following conditions:
- 100 per cent financing;
- A fixed-interest rate mortgage of 2 per cent to be reviewed every five years;
- An amortization term of 25 years which could be extended to 30 years.
The contract contains a unique “transferability” feature whereby, at the death of the mortgagor prior to the maturity of the loan, the mortgage liability may be transferred to his/her estate.