New lending rules lowering the maximum mortgage period to 30 years come into effect today, and experts say that could slow down Vancouver's spring real estate market.

Mortgage broker Mike Sjervan says he has seen many of his clients opt for the 35-year product.

"For someone making $50,000 a year in Vancouver, it's going to reduce the maximum mortgage they can get by say $30,000, or it's going to increase their payment for seven to nine per cent, or maybe $100 a month," said Sjervan.

Homeowners with 35 or 40 year mortgages will also feel the impact.

"If your mortgage is above 85 per cent of the value of your home, come renewal time, you won't be able to change lenders," said Sjervan.

The rules for refinancing have also changed. In previous years, homeowners were allowed to borrow 90 per cent of their home's equity. Now, it's down to 85 per cent.

"That's five per cent less equity you can use to pay off high-interest debt to use for your child's education, for repairs on your house, for renovations," said Rob McLister, editor of

Cameron Muir, an analyst for the B.C. Real Estate Association says the new rules could hurt the market.

"They're obviously not stimulative. They pull back the marketplace in terms of demand," said Muir.

Owen Kwong is a Vancouver homebuyer who is feeling the effects of the changes.

"I also have to check out my finances and work things out, crunch some numbers and see if I can afford a place now," he said.

With a report from CTV British Columbia's Shannon Paterson.