FREE!

General Cindi McLean 10 May

WHO PAYS YOUR MORTGAGE BROKER? NOT YOU!

If you’re looking to get a mortgage and considering a mortgage broker, there’s a good chance you’re wondering about how much the service costs.

 

Good news! Clients looking to get a standard residential mortgage pay no fees to the broker.

On standard residential mortgages, it’s 100% free for the clients. We’re paid by the bank or by the lending institution that we give the mortgage to.

But it’s not the only advantage a broker can bring you. When you’re shopping for a mortgage at a bank, they’re only able to offer you something from their stable of products. A broker, however, is able to shop at different banks to get you the best product for your needs.

If you don’t fit in the bank’s box of products, then you don’t get the mortgage. When you go to a mortgage broker, the mortgage broker has access to every lender on the market and is able to sell you basically everything to find a solution that makes the most amount of sense for you.

Because they’re able to shop around, in many cases the broker is able to find you a better rate on your mortgage.

In addition, mortgage brokers are licensed professionals covered by provincial governing bodies that looks out for you, the consumer. In many cases, the person you’re dealing with at the bank is just a salesperson, without any requirement they be licensed.

So, if you’re in the market for a new home, try a mortgage broker. It’s the safer, smarter choice for your mortgage. We’d encourage you to shop around, then get in touch with us for a no-obligation chat with a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional near you.

Article Written by:  Terry Kilakos
Dominion Lending Centres – Accredited Mortgage Professional
Ville Ste-Laurent, QC

 

How to get a free copy of your credit bureau

General Cindi McLean 12 Apr

Think of your credit score as a report card on how you’ve handled your finances in the past. A credit score is a number that lenders use to determine the risk of lending money to a given borrower.

There is always someone willing to lend you money however, higher risk = higher rates!

Step 1 for good credit – you need to know your credit history
• In Canada there are 2 credit bureaus – Equifax and TransUnion.
• You can receive a FREE copy of your credit report from both Equifax Canada and TransUnion Canada once a year
• You can pay Equifax or TransUnion for a digital copy, which is much faster, BUT you have to pay, which sucks.

I recommend you order a copy of your credit report from both Equifax Canada and TransUnion Canada, since each credit bureau may have different information about how you have used credit in the past.

Ordering your own credit report has no effect on your credit score.
• Equifax Canada refers to your credit report as “credit file disclosure”.
• TransUnion Canada refers to your credit report as “consumer disclosure”.

Once you have obtained your free credit report, check it for errors:
• Are there any late payments that have been erroneously attributed to your credit history?
• Are the amounts owing in your credit report accurate?
• Is there anything missing on your credit bureau
o Sometimes the credit bureau has more that one file with your name, which can be merged, but it takes time.

If you find any errors on your credit report, you need to dispute them with your credit bureau.

How can I get a copy of my credit report and credit score?

There are two national credit bureaus in Canada: Equifax Canada and TransUnion Canada. You should check with both bureaus.

Credit scores run from 300 to 900. The higher the number, the greater the likelihood a request for credit will be approved.

The “free-report-by-mail” links are not prominently displayed, since credit bureaus would love to sell you instant access to your report and credit score online.

Equifax, the instructions to get a free credit report by mail are available here.

For TransUnion, the instructions to get a free credit report by mail are available here.

The bottom line: when it comes to financing your life, through credit cards, mortgages, car loans or any other kind of debt – your credit score has a BIG impact on what kind of terms you can negotiate.

Keeping an eye on your credit score is important — if there’s a problem or an error, you want to know and have time to fix it before you apply for a loan. If you have any questions, contact a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional near you.

Article written by Kelly Hudson, Dominion Lending Centres, Accredited Mortgage Professional, Richmond, BC

 

Happy Holidays!

General Cindi McLean 20 Dec

From my home to your home, wishing

happy memories made this holiday season!

Best wishes for 2019

Cindi

Safety tips for a spook-tacular Halloween

General Cindi McLean 26 Oct

Halloween safety: Tips for families – published by Canadian Paediatric Society

Halloween can be a fun and exciting time for kids. These safety tips for parents, children and homeowners will help keep everyone safe and happy this Halloween.

For parents:
– Do not use masks. Masks make it hard for children to see what’s around them, including cars. Try a hypoallergenic (less likely to cause an allergic reaction), non-toxic make-up kit instead.
– Make or buy costumes in light-coloured material.
– Place strips of reflective tape on the back and front of costumes, so that drivers can better see your child.
– Costumes should fit properly to prevent trips and falls. Avoid items such as oversized shoes, high heels, long dresses and long capes.
– Dress your child for the weather. Add layers if needed.
– Put your child’s name, address and phone number on his costume.
– Children under 10 should be accompanied by an adult for trick or treating. By the age of 10, some children are ready to go trick-or-treating with a group of friends.
– Keep in mind that gum and hard candy can pose a choking risk for young children.
– Remove make-up before bedtime to prevent possible skin and eye irritation.

If your child is going out without an adult:
– Make sure your child is in a group of at least 3 people.
– Give them a flashlight. A cell phone is also a good idea if you have one.
– Discuss in advance the route they should follow. Ask them to call you if they plan to go on a street that isn’t on the route.
– Set a curfew (and make sure they have a watch with them).
– Tell your children not to eat anything until they get home.

For children and youth:
– Carry a white bag or pillowcase for your candy, and add some reflective tape.
– Dress for the weather. Cold weather or water absorbent materials in the rain can be very uncomfortable.
– Bring a cell phone, in case you need to make an emergency phone call.
– Always travel in groups. Be sure there are at least 3 of you at all times.
– Let your parents know where you’re going to be at all times.
– Don’t visit houses that are not well lit. Never go inside a stranger’s house.
– Use the sidewalk whenever possible. If there’s no sidewalk, walk on the side of the road facing traffic.
– Don’t criss-cross back and forth across the street. Work your way up one side of the street, and then start on the other.

If you have any allergies, tell the person who is giving out the treats.
– Don’t eat any of your treats before you get home. Once home, ask your parents to look through your treats with you to make sure everything is okay.

For homeowners:
– Turn on outdoor lights, and replace burnt-out bulbs.
– Remove items from your yard or porch that might trip a child.
– Sweep wet leaves from your steps and driveway.
– Use alternative to candles in your pumpkins, such as a flashlight or a battery-operated candle.
– Remember that some children have food allergies. Consider giving treats other than candy, such as stickers, erasers or a yo-yo.

Alternatives to traditional trick-or-treating
Local community centres sometimes offer Halloween night activities.
Local shopping centres often have trick-or-treat nights for young children in a more controlled environment.
Plan a Halloween night at home with themed games and movies. Invite friends.

Wishing everyone a safe and spook-tacular Halloween!

Cindi and Debbie

5 WAYS YOU CAN KILL YOUR MORTGAGE APPROVAL

General Cindi McLean 16 May

So, you found your dream home, negotiated a fair price which was accepted. You supplied all the needed documentation to your mortgage broker and you are waiting for the day that you go to the lawyer’s to sign the final paperwork and pick up the keys.

All of a sudden your broker or the lawyer calls to say that there’s a problem. How could this be? Everything has been signed and conditions have been removed. What many home buyers do not realize is that your financing approval is based on the information the lender was provided at the time of the application. If there have been any changes to your financial situation, the lender is within their rights to cancel your mortgage approval. There are 5 things that can make home financing go sideways.

1 Employment – You were working for ABC company as a clerk for 5 years making $50,000 a year and just before home possession you change jobs. The lender will now ask for proof that probation for this new job is waived and new job letters and pay stubs at the very least. If you change industries they will want to see more proof that you are capable of keeping this job.
If your new job involves overtime or bonuses of any kind that vary over time, they will ask for a 2 year average which you will not be able to provide.
Another item that could ruin your chances of getting the mortgage is if you decide to change from an employee to a self-employed contractor just before possession day. Even though you are in the same industry, your employment status has changed . This is a big deal killer.

2. Debt – A week or two before your possession date, the lender will obtain a copy of your credit report and look for any changes to your debt load. Your approval was based on how much you owed on that particular date. Buying a new car or items for the new home need to be postponed until after possession of your new home.
Don’t be fooled by “Do not pay for 12 months” sales campaigns. You now owe this money regardless of when the payments start. Don’t buy a new car and don’t buy furniture for the new home. This will increase your debt ratio and can nullify your financing.

3. Down payment source – And yet again I reiterate that the approval is based on the initial information you have provided. You will be asked at the lawyer’s office to verify the source of the down payment and if it is different than what the lender has approved, then you may be in trouble. For example, you said that you were going to save the funds and then at the last minute Mom and Dad offer you the funds as a gift. There’s no problem accepting the gift if the lender knows about it in advance and has included this in their risk assessment, but it can end a deal.

4. Credit – Don’t forget to make your regular credit card payments. If your credit score falls due to late payments, this can kill your financing. If you have a high ratio mortgage in place which required CMHC insurance, a lower credit score could mean a withdrawal of their insurance once again , killing the deal.

5-Identity Documents – This can be a deal killer at the lawyer’s office. The lawyer is required to verify your identity documents and see that they match the mortgage documents. Many Canadians use their middle names if they have the same name as their parent. Lots of new Canadians adopt a more Canadian sounding name for their day-to-day lives but their passports and other documents show another name.

Be sure to use your legal name when you apply for a mortgage to avoid this catastrophe . Finally, keep in touch with your Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional right up to possession day. Make this a happy experience rather than a heartbreaking one.

Article Written By:
David Cooke
Dominion Lending Centres – Accredited Mortgage Professional
David is part of DLC Clarity Mortgages in Calgary, AB.

SPRING INTO ACTION: REFINANCE YOUR MORTGAGE WITH THE HELP OF A MORTGAGE BROKER! Give me a call. I’m here to help! 705-783-8383

General Cindi McLean 26 Mar

We sprung forward earlier this month by changing our clocks one hour ahead. For some, their microwave and oven clocks are once again displaying the correct time since the last time we needed to adjust our clocks (in the Fall). Patience is a virtue – except for when it comes time to refinance a mortgage!

The Spring is a busy time for mortgage brokers across the country. We welcome this change in season knowing that we are in the best position to give families mortgages that make sense for them.

This is the time of year that banks begin to send out their mortgage renewal notices. Some people will simply sign the documentation sent over from their bank and take on a new mortgage at the rate the bank has suggested. However, this may not be the best rate for which you and your family can qualify.

What is a Mortgage Renewal?

A mortgage renewal is when the current terms of your mortgage come to an end and you sign on for a new mortgage term.

The time is now to spring into action, up to three months ahead of your mortgage renewal deadline. By shopping around for the best mortgage rate for your financial circumstances, you may save yourself thousands of dollars. To do that, you may want to consider working with a seasoned professional – your local mortgage broker.

The benefits of working with a mortgage broker to help find a mortgage solution that works best for you are three-fold.

A mortgage broker gives you a second opinion.
While your current mortgage lender claims to have your best interest at heart, getting a second opinion on your financial situation does not hurt. There may be new options and products available for you that your current lender is forgetting or unable to offer. A second opinion on your changed financials may be able to save you money or highlight some new options that may be better suited to your needs.

A mortgage broker does the work for you, at no cost.
Some people are still concerned that hiring a seasoned professional to look at your finances and find new mortgage rates will cost a lot of money. This is a myth! Mortgage brokers provide their services at no charge (yes, free!) and take a fee from the lending institution, not the client. So, let us look around for the best mortgage rates available to you on your behalf – all at no cost to you.

A mortgage broker does ONE credit check but can check MULTIPLE lenders without lowering your credit score.
One of the biggest advantages to having a mortgage broker shop around on your behalf is having them conduct one credit check and then using that information to shop around among several different lenders. If you wanted to shop around on your own, you would have to allow each institution to run a credit check and, as a result, lower your credit score. Working with a lender also means a lot less paperwork for you, too!

In short, a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage broker does the legwork on finding the best mortgage rate for you, at no cost and with only one credit check. Be sure to spring into action this Spring to get a jump on your mortgage renewal process.

Article written by:
Max Omar
Dominion Lending Centres – Accredited Mortgage Professional
Max is part of DLC Capital Region based in Edmonton, AB.

Tips to Keep in Mind Between Your Mortgage Approval and Funding Dates.

General Cindi McLean 8 Mar

In light of the new market realities and tightening of credit underwriting standards by both lenders and mortgage default insurer as of late, keep in mind that now – more than ever – it’s important to be careful what you do between the time your mortgage is approved and when it funds.

More and more lenders and insurers have been doing something lately that they have not done in a long time – pulling new credit bureaus prior to funding, especially if there is a long period between the time of your approval and when the mortgage actually funds.

Following are 8 tips to keep in mind between your mortgage approval and funding dates:

1. Don’t buy a new car or trade-up to more expensive lease.

2. Don’t quit your job or change jobs. Even if it’s a better-paying job, you still are likely to be on a probationary period. If in doubt, call your mortgage professional
and they can let you know if this may jeopardize your approval.

3. Don’t change industries, decide to become self-employed or accept a contract position. even if it’s within the same industry. Delay the start of your new job, self-
employment or contract status until after the funding date of your mortgage.

4. Don’t transfer large sums of money between bank accounts. Lenders get especially skittish about this one because it looks like you’re borrowing money. Be ready to
document cash transactions or money movements.

5. Don’t forget to pay your bills, even ones that you’re disputing. This can be a real deal-breaker. If the lender pulls your credit bureau prior to closing and sees a
collection or a delinquent account, the best you can hope for is that they make you pay off the account before the will fund. You don’t want to have to scramble to pay off a debt at the
last minute!

6. Don’t ope new credit cards. Again, just wait until after your funding date.

7. Don’t accept a cash gift without properly documenting it – even if this is from your proceeds of a wedding. If you have a bunch of cash to deposit before your funding
date, give your mortgage professional a call before you deposit it.

8. Don’t buy furniture on the “Do not pay for XX years plan” until after funding. Even though you don’t have to pay now, it will still be reported on your credit bureau, and
will become an issue – especially if your approval was tight to begin with.

While you may not risk losing your mortgage approval because you have broken one of these rules, it’s always best to talk to your mortgage professional before doing any of the above just to make sure!

Please give me a call, I’m here to help! 705-783-8383

Confused about what a Mortgage Agent can do for you? Well here’s your answer……

General Cindi McLean 26 Feb

I realized recently that there’s still some confusion surrounding exactly what we do and what services we have to offer as independent Mortgage Professionals.

With today’s uncertain economic climate, the record debt levels many Canadians now face and the fact that interest rates are beginning to rise, we’re fielding more questions than ever before.

We work with Canada’s leading Financial Institutions, including Banks, Trust Companies and Credit Unions. This includes Scotiabank, TD Canada Trust and many others. There is a complete list of all our lending partners available on my website.

Since our company, Dominion Lending Centres, sends these lenders more than $14 billion in mortgage volume annually, these lenders provide us with exceptional rates, fast turnaround times and flexibility with approvals.

When you use us to find you the best mortgage products and rates catered to your unique needs, we negotiate on your behalf and there is no cost to you. The lender pays us a fee for bringing business their way. Remember, this saves lenders from paying out the costs associated with additional employees in wages, vacations, training, office space and benefit. There is no cost to you, and we only earn a fee if we arrange the mortgage for you. The fee is the same, regardless of which lender I choose, and it’s not built into the rate. The rate is typically lower than if you went directly to the lender, and the process is much simpler.

We also have lenders available that specialize in providing mortgages for clients who are self-employed, contract employees, those who have seasonal income, have trouble proving income or lack some of the standard documentation. We are experts in negotiating the best rates for all Canadian, but understand that sometimes you may have challenges in your past that we can work through with you – and help get you back on track.

Many borrowers think their bank will automatically give them the best rates simply because they have been loyal customers for many years, have multiple accounts with them or have high account balances. Don’t fall into that trap. That kind of thinking has cost many clients thousands of dollars in unnecessary interest.

I’m a fully licensed Mortgage Professional with a financial planner background that gets the job done. The safety and security of your personal information is of utmost importance and all discussions, documentation and file management are completely confidential at all times.

For a discussion on how I can help you, give me a call. I’m here to help!

Looking forward to hearing from you,
Cindi

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