18 May

DO YOU UNDERSTAND THE B-20 GUIDELINES?

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Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

What are the B-20 GUIDELINES? Chk this out !!

DO YOU UNDERSTAND THE B-20 GUIDELINES?

A new survey has emerged showing that out of 1,901 owners and would be homeowners, 43% (more than two out of five) Canadians are not confident in their knowledge of the mortgage stress tests—despite them being in place for more than a year now.

We wanted to give you a brief set of notes regarding the guidelines. This is something you can use and reference whether you are a first-time home buyer or looking to refinance underneath these new guidelines. It gives a clear picture of what/how you are impacted as a buyer or someone who is looking to refinance.

Here’s what you need to know about B-20:

The average Canadian’s home purchasing power for any given income bracket will see their borrowing power and/or buying power under these guidelines reduced 15-25%. Here is an example of the impact the rules have on buying a home and refinancing a home.

PURCHASING A NEW HOME

When purchasing a new home with these new guidelines, borrowing power is also restricted. Using the scenario of a dual income family making a combined annual income of $85,000 the borrowing amount would be:

Up To December 31 2017 After January 1 2018
Target Rate 3.34% 3.34%
Qualifying Rate 3.34% 5.34%
Maximum Mortgage Amount $560,000 $455,000
Available Down Payment $100,000 $100,000
Home Purchase Price $660,000 $555,000

REFINANCING A MORTGAGE

A dual-income family with a combined annual income of $85,000.00. The current value of their home is $700,000. They have a remaining mortgage balance of $415,000 and lenders will refinance to a maximum of 80% LTV. The maximum amount available is: $560,000 minus the existing mortgage gives you $145,000 available in the equity of the home, provided you qualify to borrow it.

Up to December 31, 2017 After January 1 2018
Target Rate 3.34% 3.34%
Qualifying Rate 3.34% 5.34%
Maximum Amount Available to Borrow $560,000 $560,000
Remaining Mortgage Balance $415,000 $415,000
Equity Able to Qualify For $145,000 $40,000

Source (TD Canada Trust)

These guidelines have been in place since January 1, 2018, and we are starting to see the full impact of them for both buyers and those looking to refinance. Stats are showing that there is a slowdown in the real estate market, however, there is also a heightened struggle for many buyers to now obtain approval under these new guidelines. It’s a difficult situation as the cry for affordable housing is still ongoing as the new guidelines may slow down the market but appear to further decrease the borrowing/buying power of individuals.
Keep in mind, this is just a brief refresher course on the B-20 guidelines. As always, if you have more questions or are looking for more information, we suggest that you reach out to your Dominion Lending Centres mortgage broker to discuss and get a full and detailed look at how it will impact you personally.

7 May

WHAT’S YOUR BEST RATE?

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Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

WHAT’S YOUR BEST RATE- CHK this out !!

WHAT’S YOUR BEST RATE?

You know at one time I could give you a quote over the phone and not worry that I would be too far out. Today is a totally different story, here are some of the variables that come into play.

1. What’s your credit score? A 700 FICO score is the new 650 for many lenders as their investors demand better quality borrowers.
2. Where is the property located? Rural areas are getting harder to finance.
3. Is it an insured file, are you putting less than 20% down payment?
4. Is it insurable? Are you putting down more than 20% on the purchase but it can qualify under the stress test, currently 5.34%?
5. Is the loan to value going to be 65% or less? You get the same rate as the guy with 5% down and have to qualify with the same criteria.
6. Are you looking to refinance or buy a rental? Sorry, both are uninsurable and have to qualify at 5.34% but you have to pay a higher interest rate.
7. So how about your employment; have you been on your job or at least in the same industry for the last 2 or more years?
8. Down payment requires a 90-day statement of where it has been kept, please be sure that it was in a bank as anything else seems to be picked to death. Larger gifts lately have required the gift or to show the money was in their account. God forbid they should have won it at a casino as they will want the print out from the cage boss, especially in B.C.
9. How fast is your deal closing, as there are quick close rates usually for insured deals?
10. While supposedly everyone is to be able to qualify at 44%TDS and 39% GDS, it’s not always the case as CMHC is still in some instances lower than a 680 FICO score and is wanting the client to be qualified at the old standard of 42% and 35%, which again cuts back the qualifying amounts.

As you can see what’s your best rate has a lot of things come into play today and anyone who gives you a rate over the phone has hopefully asked you at least some of these questions. The best rate today is more about what fits your situation but the old adage of who, what, where and how still apply. Once we have asked the questions, we have to audit the answers to make sure it’s the best fit for your situation. If you have any questions, contact a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional near you.

29 Apr

HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR CREDIT SCORE

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Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

Check this out- HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR CREDIT SCORE ??

HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR CREDIT SCORE

When applying for any sort of loan, one of the most important metrics a lender is going to look at is your credit score.

But what really is a credit score, who keeps track of it, and most importantly, how can you improve yours?

There are a few simple ways to keep your credit score in good shape.

First off, prioritize paying your bills on time. Missing payments on your credit cards, lines of credit and so on, can have a very negative impact on your score.

You can spend an entire lifetime building up for good credit. All it takes is one mistake to negatively impact you.”
Second, try to keep your credit cards at no more than 65% of their limit. This is the sweet spot that credit scorers are looking for.

Thirdly, you should avoid the “free credit score” services out there because they’re just looking to sell you credit, or sell your information to someone who does.

When you’re looking for credit, what they’re going to ask you is, ‘What are you looking for credit for?’ And you’re going to say, ‘Well, I’m looking to get a mortgage, or I’m looking to get a car loan.’ And then what they’re going to do is they’re going to sell your information to banks and mortgage brokers and people out there who are able to supply you with credit.

Instead, what you should do is go directly to the credit scoring companies. They’re required by law to give you your credit information directly, without affecting your score. TransUnion offers an online form, found here. Equifax has multiple types of credit reports you can order here.

You also want to try to limit the number of credit inquiries by different lenders. When you’re shopping around at different banks, the number of inquiries can add up as each bank makes an inquiry to see what they can offer you.

But as a mortgage broker, we have access to multiple lenders all at once.

You could effectively come to see a mortgage broker, get one inquiry done, and that inquiry is good for 20 financial institutions, As opposed to having to go directly to every bank. If you have any questions, contact your local Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional near you.

19 Apr

WHAT’S INCLUDED IN A HOME PURCHASE AGREEMENT

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Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

Check this out- WHAT’S INCLUDED IN A HOME PURCHASE AGREEMENT- New builds vs existing homes !!

WHAT’S INCLUDED IN A HOME PURCHASE AGREEMENT

While a home purchase agreement may seem simple and straight forward, there are many differences that you can encounter that can be a big surprise to first-time homebuyers. While you expect the date of possession and the full purchase price to be outlined in the agreement, there are items that you may not be aware should be included.

New builds vs existing homes

If you are buying a newly constructed home, there are quite a few differences between what you get in an existing home.
Legal fees – often home builders will include the legal fees in the purchase price. You should be aware that the law firm that will provide the service is the builder’s lawyer. Should a legal dispute develop, they will take the side of the builder and you will have to find your own independent legal counsel. In fact, if you can afford it, you should consider getting your own lawyer. The $1,200 savings could end up costing you more in the long run.
You should be aware that the show home that you have visited usually has numerous upgrades. I know that when I purchased my first new home I assumed that the bathroom rough-ins in the basement were standard, only to find out later that this was an upgrade. Retrofitting plumbing pipes is a costly venture.
You should also be aware that landscaping, fences, and window coverings are not usually not included in the purchase price. Double check to see if the triple-pane windows on the show home are standard or an upgrade. Hardwood floors and basement development are usually an upgrade as well.

Existing homes

When you are buying an existing home, you will find that the window coverings, fences, and landscaping are included in most cases. The window coverings should be included in the offer to purchase contract.
Something that may look like it’s supposed to be there but the seller may want to take with them is the hot tub and storage shed. Don’t assume that these items are included. The legal fees are never covered in an existing home sale.

Finally, from a mortgage standpoint, you should be aware that if you are purchasing an acreage or a large property with several outbuildings, your mortgage lender will cover the cost of the home plus one outbuilding and up to three acres of land. If there’s a garage, barn and workshop usually the garage will be included in what the mortgage company will cover but not the smaller outbuildings. Check with your Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional before you make an offer on a property like this.

10 Apr

INCOME QUALIFIED

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Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

INCOME QUALIFIED- FOR THE MORTGAGE- Check this out !!

 

INCOME QUALIFIED

There are several different ways a borrower can qualify for a mortgage when it comes to their income. One of the most common ways is known as income qualified. All of the following methods of employment income are under the income qualified umbrella:

  1. Annual salary income employees
  2. Full-time employees working guaranteed weekly hours
  3. Part-time employees working guaranteed weekly hours
  4. Auxiliary/On-call employees with 2-yr history at the same employer
  5. Commission Sales who have the 2-yr history in same job/industry
  6. Employees earning gratuities who have claimed over 2-yr history
  7. Contract employees with 2-yr history at job/industry

There are a couple more types of employment that may fall into this category, but for the most part, these are the types of borrowers whose mortgage application is going to be done using income qualifying.

When it comes to the first 3, a borrower’s income is paid by a business in which they generally do not have any interest/ownership in. This means an human resources representative or a supervisor can write a letter of employment stating the weekly guaranteed hours, the guaranteed hourly pay rate, the start date, and the employee’s position. The lender will then use this letter, a most recent pay stub, as well as verbally confirm the letter with the employer to verify a borrower’s income. This is how a borrower who works guaranteed hours or salary has their income verified and qualified on a mortgage application.

For numbers 4 to 7, lenders and mortgage brokers will verify and qualify a borrowers income a little differently. Because an employer does not guarantee hours or income, we need to see that there has been at least a 2-year history making the same amount. This 2-year history will usually need to be with the same employer and will need to be documented on your personal income tax returns to the Canadian Revenue Agency. The income amount on your line 150 of your T1 General Tax Returns for the past 2 years are added together and then divided by 2. The amount you get is the income you are allowed to use on your mortgage application and this is then verified by a letter of employment stating you have in fact been an employee there for more than 2 years, you are currently working there, your position, as well as a pay stub showing year-to-date income that is comparable to your 2-year average given the month you are in.

The same process would be used for those who earn overtime or bonuses, claim tips, or work part-time with two jobs. If you have any questions, contact a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional near you.

y questions, contact a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional near you.

2 Apr

MORTGAGE STRESS TEST – NOT THE BAD GUY

General

Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

MORTGAGE STRESS TEST – NOT THE BAD GUY- Check this out!!

MORTGAGE STRESS TEST – NOT THE BAD GUY

Ever since the federal government regulator, The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (or OSFI) brought in the Mortgage Stress Test, there was plenty of blame heaped upon it for slowing home sales and new home starts. Even though it has slightly reduced how much of a mortgage I can approve my clients for, the initial logic is sound. The stress test attempts to protect Canadians from taking on more mortgage debt than they will be able to afford when their mortgage renews down the road.

What it doesn’t do is curb additional debt and other financial factors after the mortgage starts. Many clients do not consider long-term changes like, child care expenses, new vehicle loans, ongoing credit card and line of credit debt payments.

I work with many first and second-time homebuyers with wide-ranging financial details. The stress test is a limiting factor, but in no way is it the largest culprit in preventing my clients from getting a mortgage they are requesting. credit cards, lines of credit and vehicle loans have a much larger impact on reducing the mortgage borrowing ability for most of my clients.

Here are some real-world numbers on two hypothetical first-time homebuyer scenarios that help to illustrate what consumer debts can have on a mortgage application.

1. Individual or couple – scenario 1
Buyer(s) with a household gross income of $80,000 that have $17,000 as a down payment.
There is a student loan with a payment of $200 per month and a vehicle loan of $300 biweekly.
This application would be approved for the purchase of a $250,000 detached home.
An additional monthly credit or loan payment of only $300 per month will prevent mortgage approval for this application.

2. Individual or couple – scenario 2
Buyer(s) with a household gross income of $125,000 that have $33,000 as a down payment.
There is a student loan with a payment of $200 per month and a vehicle loan of $300 biweekly.
This application would be approved for the purchase of a $500,000 detached home.
An additional monthly credit or loan payment of only $500 per month will prevent mortgage approval for this application.

Credit cards, lines of credit and vehicle loans are exceedingly easy to obtain but could stand in your way when you are looking to buy your first or next home. Please consider carefully before financing anything. If you have any questions, contact a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional near you.

26 Mar

3 “RULES OF LENDING” – WHAT BANKS LOOK AT WHEN YOU APPLY FOR A MORTGAGE

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Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

Check this out- 3 “RULES OF LENDING” – WHEN YOU APPLY FOR A MORTGAGE- with A BANK !!

3 “RULES OF LENDING” – WHAT BANKS LOOK AT WHEN YOU APPLY FOR A MORTGAGE

Buying a home is usually the biggest purchase most people make and there are a lot of factors to consider. Our job is to provide you with much information (as you can handle!!) so you make the best decision based on your particular situation.

The 3 “rules of lending” focus on determining the maximum size of a mortgage that can be supported by your provable (what you paid taxes on) income.

You need to consider two affordability ratios:

Rule #1 – GROSS DEBT SERVICE (GDS) Your monthly housing costs are generally not supposed to exceed 36-39% of your gross monthly income. Housing costs include – your monthly mortgage payment, property taxes, and heating. If you are buying a condo/townhouse, the GDS will also include ½ of your strata fees. The total of these monthly payments divided by your “provable” gross monthly income will give you your Gross Debt Service.
Mortgage payments + Property taxes + Heating Costs + 50% of condo fees / Annual Income

Rule #2 – TOTAL DEBT SERVICE (TDS) Your entire monthly debt payments should not exceed 42-44% of your gross monthly income This includes your housing costs (GDS above) PLUS all other monthly payments (car payments, credit cards, Line of Credit, additional financing, etc.). The total of all your monthly debts divided by your “provable” gross monthly income will give you your Total Debt Service.
Housing expenses (see GDS) + Credit card interest + Car payments + Loan expenses / Annual Income

What about the other 56% of your income?? This is considered to be used up by ‘normal’ monthly expenses including taxes, food, medical, transportation, entertainment etc.)

Rule #3 – CREDIT RATING Everyone who will be on title to the property will need to have their credit run. Your credit bureau is important because it shows the lenders how well (or not) you have handled credit in the past. This gives them an indication of how you will handle credit in the future, and will you be a good risk and make your mortgage payments as promised. If you handle credit well, you will have a high Credit Score and get the best interest rates from the banks/lenders. If you have not handled credit well, and have a poor credit score, you will either be charged a higher interest rate or your application will be declined.

If you have any questions, contact a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional near you.

18 Mar

WHAT IS AN UNINSURABLE MORTGAGE?

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Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

Check this out-WHAT IS AN UNINSURABLE MORTGAGE?

With the mortgage rule changes in recent years, lenders have had to make some adjustments to their rate offerings.

There are different tiers and rate pricing based on the following 3 categories:
1) Insured – a mortgage that is insured with mortgage default insurance through one of Canada’s mortgage insurers, CMHC, Genworth or Canada Guaranty. A mortgage insurance premium based on a percentage of the loan amount is added to and paid along with the mortgage
2) Insurable – a mortgage that may not need mortgage insurance (20% or more down payment) but would qualify under the mortgage insurers rules. The client doesn’t have to pay an insurance premium but the lender has the option to if they choose.
3) Uninsurable – a mortgage that does not meet mortgage insurer rules such as refinances or mortgages with an amortization longer than 25-years. No insurance premium required.

Insured mortgages are the safest type of mortgage loan for the banks and the most cost-effective way of lending mortgage money, so clients seeking or in need of an insured mortgage will get the best rate offering on the market.
Insured as well as Insurable mortgages can be bundled and sold as Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS) meaning banks can get that money back quickly so they can lend more out. While Insured mortgages get the best rates, Insurable mortgages are typically a close second.

If a mortgage is Uninsurable that means the banks have to lend their own money and have to commit to that loan for the full term at least. This makes it a more expensive loan for the bank, so they pass the cost on to the consumer as a premium on the rate – typically 10-20 basis-points.

While there are rumors that the Government may start to allow refinances and 30-year amortizations to be insured again, no formal announcements are expected in the next few months.
In the meantime, consumers looking to tap into the equity they’ve built (consolidation, investment, home renovations) or wanting to keep their payments as low as they can (30-year amortization) are paying the price.
If either a refinance or a longer amortization is something you are considering, it’s wise to have a free analysis of your mortgage done so you can make an informed decision. If you have any questions, contact a Dominion Lending Centres broker near you.

11 Mar

RENOVATING? CONSIDER A REFINANCE PLUS IMPROVEMENTS

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Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

Check this out – RENOVATING? CONSIDER A REFINANCE PLUS IMPROVEMENTS !!

RENOVATING? CONSIDER A REFINANCE PLUS IMPROVEMENTS

Let’s take a closer look at how a Refinance Plus Improvements mortgage can get you the extra cash you need to get your renovations completed.

The Standard Refinance

An everyday refinance allows the homeowner to access up to 80% of the fair market value of the home. The value is typically determined by a Market Appraisal on the home. Here is how it would look:

  • Current Appraised Value of the home: $250,000.00
  • Max New Mortgage Amount: $200,000.00 ß 80% of present value
  • Your current Mortgage Balance: $190,000
  • Equity Available to you for the renovations: $10,000.00

*Note: some of the equity will cover closing costs (it is a new mortgage, after all, so a new registration and fund advance needs to happen. If you are breaking a current mortgage, there could be a pre-payment penalty as well)

The remaining equity can be used for your improvements. But what happens if it’s not enough to cover the improvement costs? You’re now stuck with either making sacrifices to your dream reno, covering the additional costs out of pockets, use a higher interest line of credit or not doing the renovations at all. None of which are great options.

The Refinance Plus Improvements Mortgage

Here is how the Refinance Plus Improvements mortgage can make all the difference.

For argument sake, let’s assume for a moment that the homeowner is thinking about renovating their kitchen and main bathroom. These are in no way a small improvement. They are quite significant improvements…new flooring, cabinets, countertops and paint in the kitchen along with a full gut and renovation in the main bathroom.

After sitting down with a Mortgage Broker to determine mortgage affordability, the homeowners next step is getting estimates for the renovations. After having multiple contractors quote on the work, the homeowner settles on a contractor that has quoted $20,000.00 for the job (Labour and materials costs, all in, turnkey project). Let’s also assume for a moment that the renovations are going to increase the value of the home by $30,000.00 (side note: Kitchen and Main Bathroom Renovations can have the biggest impact on the value of a home). Here is how it would look:

Refinance Plus improvements:

  • Current Home Value: $250,000.00
  • Post Renovation Home Value: $280,000.00
  • New Max Mortgage Amount: $224,000.00
  • Your Current Mortgage Balance: $190,000.00
  • Equity Available for the renovations: $34,000.00

See the difference? The refinance plus improvements in this scenario can get the homeowner access to an additional $24,000, far exceeding the improvements planned for home. No sacrifices required. No unsecured higher interest financing required. No need to tap into personal savings. Just a nice new mortgage with a low-interest rate and one simple payment.

If you have questions about how a refinance plus improvements mortgage can make all of the difference with your renovations plans, please feel free to connect with a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional near you. We are always happy to chat mortgage strategy with you while at the same time shopping the market and rates on your behalf!

Happy Renovating!

2 Mar

FIRST TIME HOME BUYERS

General

Posted by: Sangeeta Sangeeta

FIRST TIME HOME BUYERS ?? Chk this out !!

FIRST TIME HOME BUYERS

Your First Home. What a THRILLING thing that is to think about!! One of the best parts about our job is helping individuals purchase their first home. We know that the process can seem daunting at first, but we have an in-depth understanding and knowledge of what steps are required to make the process go smoothly. Follow these and you will be turning the key into your new home before you know it.

1. Find a Fantastic Mortgage Broker
Finding a mortgage broker who can help with your pre-approval process can allow you to determine the price point of home you can really afford. Finding a mortgage broker right off the bat can also give you an advantage over working with your bank:

  • Mortgage Brokers work for you, not the bank or lender
  • They have access to multiple lenders and are not limited to one single product
  • They are an expert in the field. They focus on mortgages and mortgages alone!

2. Get Comfortable With The Numbers
There are two numbers that all first-time homebuyers should keep in mind: 39 and 44. These two numbers can help you budget and determine what you can truly afford when looking to purchase a home. Why 39 and 44? Here’s why:

  • A maximum of 39% of your total income can go towards your housing costs. This will cover your mortgage payment, property tax payment, heating costs, and strata fees.
  • A maximum of 44% of your total income can go towards your housing costs and total debt payments. This will include ALL housing costs and all debt repayments (credit cards, car loans, student loans, etc.)

Now, here are a few other key numbers that can help you in your house hunting:

3. Know What Your Down Payment Needs to Be
You know the numbers, now let’s look at what you need to know about the down payment itself. First, if you have less than 20% down payment your mortgage will be insured and have insurance premiums added to your mortgage. If you are considering putting the minimum down, that would be 5% if the property is worth $500,000 or less. A down payment of 10% is required for any amount over $500,000. Here’s a quick example of what this looks like:

Purchase Price of $600,000

5% of $500,000                                   $25,000

10% of $100,000                                             $10,000

Total Down Payment:                                   $35,000

4. Take Advantage of The RRSP Home Buyers Plan
The Canadian government’s Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP) allows for first time home buyers to borrow up to $25,000 from your RRSP for a down payment, tax-free! You are able to combine this with your partner if you are both first time home buyers you can both access the $25,000 from your RRSP for a combined total of $50,000. Certain qualifications do apply for you to use this plan, we have laid them out here for you to review.

5. Don’t Forget About the Closing Costs!
This is one so many people overlook! Closing costs are something that can add up quickly when you are purchasing a home. Here is an approximate breakdown of the funds you will need:

  • Legal Costs: $1000
  • Title Insurance: $200
  • Appraisal: $350
  • Property Transfer Tax: Pending on purchase price

An additional few facts on property tax for you to consider:

This is an approximation of what your closing costs may be, but it is always good to budget for them beforehand.

6. Have your Documents Ready to Roll
Mortgages = paperwork! There are a number of documents that you will need to have to give to your mortgage broker. This will vary depending on your employment situation and where your down payment is coming from, but here is a general list you can follow:

  • Most Recent paystub
  • Letter of Employment
  • NOA’s (2 years)
  • T4’s (2 years)
  • Down payment verification—up to 3 months of bank statements
  • Contract of Purchase and Sale (Your realtor will provide this)
  • Property Disclosure Statement (Realtor will provide)
  • if you are self-employed you may also have to show:
    o T1 Generals
    o Articles of Incorporation
    o Financial Statements

7. Start Working on Your Credit Score
Yes, your credit score does directly impact your ability to get a mortgage. Lenders want to see that you can responsibly manage credit and debt repayment before loaning you a large sum of money to purchase a home. Your credit score will be a determining factor in the terms and rate associated with your mortgage.

Just what impacts your credit score? Good question! Here are a few things:

  • Late payments will lower your score
  • Collections, judgments, consumer proposals, bankruptcy this will lower your score
  • Exceeded limits on credit cards
  • Ideally, you will be able to show a minimum of 2 active and current trade lines
  • The longer your trade line is, the better increase in your score!
  • Lenders also like to see a minimum of $2,000 limit on your credit cards.

Understanding and using this knowledge can help make your first home buying experience a great one! Once you have gone through the pre-approval process with a mortgage broker the fun part begins! Upon you receiving your preapproval, you can begin the house hunting. From there, you can put an offer on your dream home (yay!) Once your offer is accepted, we go through the mortgage process with you and then it’s moving day for you!

This is an exciting time for first-time homebuyers—we enjoy getting to help our clients go from start to finish and helping them get the keys to their first ever home. If you have questions or are looking to find out just how much you will qualify for you can check out our mortgage calculator OR you can reach out to a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional directly!