To Stay or Not to Stay

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To Stay or Not to Stay!

To Stay or Not to Stay is the question many home owners ask themselves when trying to decide whether to stay or not to stay with their current lender or to go to a new lender when its mortgage renewal time.

With mortgage interest rates at all time lows it makes more sense than not to consider switching your mortgage to a new lender who has a better rate than the rate your current lender can offer you at renewal time.

However most consumers do not consider this fact and do not know that it is not as cumbersome and even pretty well free to switch your mortgage from one lender to another. Many Banks and mono-line lenders have promotions that cover the cost of the client switching their mortgage to the new lender.

It is for this reason that you should consult with your trusted mortgage broker or agent, when considering to stay or not to stay with your current lender, so that he or she can assess your current situation and figure out if it is worth it for you to either stay or move your mortgage. Sometimes after doing the calculations the mortgage professional will advise you that it is not worth your time and money to switch and better to just stick with your current lender, and other times the mortgage professional will advise you that it is in fact beneficial for you to switch your mortgage to a new lender due to their lower rates and other promotions.

to stay or not to stay

The most obvious reason to switch

The most obvious reason to switch your mortgage would be for many the lower mortgage interest rate that the other lender is offering. But there are other reasons why people switch their mortgage, such as not being happy with the service levels of the current lender, and wanting to take advantage of the mortgage products the other lender has to offer that the existing lender does not have.

The most obvious reason to stay

Perhaps the most obvious reason to stay with your current mortgage lender at renewal time is because of the relationship that you have developed with them throughout the years of your mortgage with the lender. Some home owners who have mortgages with the big banks want to stay with them at renewal time to take advantage of the other bank products that they may potentially be able to get approved for and receive discounts on for staying with the bank.

At Trusterra Mortgage we are here to answer your questions and help you make the right decisions when it comes to your mortgage. Don’t hesitate to Contact Us!

 

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Mortgage Renewal

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It’s Mortgage Renewal time

Is your mortgage coming up for renewal within the next several months? Don’t settle for less. If you don’t look around you’ll never know if your existing lender is offering you the best mortgage renewal package. This is where we come in. As a mortgage brokerage we shop around on behalf of our clients to make sure they get the best overall suited mortgage product for their mortgage renewal needs. And never compare yourself with another person’s mortgage as everyone’s personal situation could be different, which in turn will require customized approaches towards getting the right mortgage at mortgage renewal time.

mortgage renewal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Different Reasons for mortgage renewals

So you’ve been thinking lately about what to do with your mortgage. Contact us and lets think about it together. You’ve also heard that the lower your mortgage balance is the higher your home equity would be and the more money you can access from your home. That is true, as your mortgage balance decreases the percentage of the equity you can access from your home increases.

Here are some reasons why you should contact us:

  • You want to do a mortgage renewal for a better rate than what your current lender has offering you
  • You want to do a mortgage renewal to consolidate your debts and pay a lower interest rate on the new larger mortgage amount
  • You want to do a mortgage renewal with a new lender to add a home equity line of credit to your house
  • You want to do a mortgage renewal so you can change lenders to a new one because you’ve heard good things about them and like their offerings, or have other accounts with the new lender
  • You have other personal doing a mortgage renewal with a new lender

Perks to switch to a new lender

The lenders have internal perks, unadvertised for the general public for switching your mortgage that only the mortgage broker community knows about. For example, if we switch your mortgage the new lender could cover the legal, appraisal, and the discharge fees. Therefore not only are you benefiting with getting expert unbiased professional advice for your renewal from Trusterra Mortgage, you are also getting competitive mortgage rates, and are switching your mortgage at minimal cost to you.

 

If you recently got a new mortgage or renewed your existing one, you can always give us your details and let us know when to contact you for when the time comes to renew again by using our free Mortgage Renewal Reminder Service.

Ready to start or maybe you have some questions to ask first? Contact us and we’d be happy to help you.

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Americans buying Canadian Real Estate

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Americans buying Canadian Real Estate

With the value of the Canadian dollar being so low in comparison to the US dollar, it’s never been a better time as it is now for Americans buying Canadian real estate.

Now that the U.S. dollar has so much buying power here in Canada, American’s are finding it difficult to avoid the opportunity to invest in their second home, or vacation property in such places as cottage country in Alberta or Ontario.

If you have considered the possibility of purchasing real estate in Canada we can help you with any mortgage related matters. As well, we would be able to connect you to Realtors in the area you are considering to buy. Contact us to find out more about your options.

Americans buying Canadian real estate

Americans buying Canadian real estate are finding many options of properties to choose from with reasonable down payment requirements from the Canadian lenders.

Another good reason why Americans are buying Canadian real estate is due to their close proximity to Canada, the longest border in the world and only a few hours away in many instances.

Having very similar credit score rating systems in Canada and the United States of America the Canadian lenders accept U.S. credit reports and employment making the mortgage application process fairly routine and the same as the American would go through in the U.S.

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New Mortgage Down Payment Rule

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New Mortgage Down Payment Rule

On December 11, 2015 the Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced changes to the rules related on how much mortgage down payment for government-backed mortgage insurance the consumer must provide. As stated in the Department of Finance Canada’s press release, the purpose of new mortgage down payment rule changes are “to contain risks in the housing market, reduce taxpayer exposure, and support long-term stability.”

new mortgage down payment rule
image courtesy of Macleans.ca

The new mortgage down payment rule comes into effect on February 15, 2016 for home purchase prices above $500,000 with changes to the minimum down payment amount a home buyer can provide. Up to a home purchase price of $500,000 the 5% mortgage down payment rule is unchanged. Any amount above and beyond $500,000 the borrower must now provide 10% of the above and beyond amount.

Here’s how to calculate how much mortgage down payment you will need if the purchase price is more than $500,000.

Example

Before the mortgage down payment rule becomes effective

Purchase price: $750,000 x 5% = $37,500

Mortgage amount: $750,000 – $37,500 = $712,500

After the mortgage down payment rule becomes effective

Purchase price: $750,000

$500,000 x 5% = $25,000

$250,000 x 10% = $25,000

Total down payment you will need is $25,000 + $25,000 = $50,000

Mortgage amount: $750,000 – $50,000 = $700,000

 

For the above example and comparable, after February 15, 2016 when the new mortgage down payment rules come into effect the borrower will need to have an additional $12,500 to pay towards the down payment.

new mortgage down payment rule

Curious to know how much the mortgage payment’s will be? Head over to our mortgage calculator page. You can select a mortgage rate from any of our mortgage terms on our mortgage rates page to use in the mortgage calculator.

Contact us for more complex calculations and for any questions you may have regarding the new mortgage down payment rule or any other mortgage related questions. We’re here to help!

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Mortgage Calculator

Mortgage Calculator

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Mortgage Calculator

With the advancement of the world wide web, and the progress of technology making it easier than ever for the consumer to perform research online for almost every subject under the cloud, more people are also using online mortgage calculators to find out how much their potential monthly mortgage payments would be, or how much they can get approved for.

Trusterra Mortgage also offers a mortgage calculator for visitors to explore their options. For basic calculations the mortgage calculator will get the job done, but for more advanced and accurate results it is always best to consult directly with a mortgage professional. That is why we here at Trusterra Mortgage always take the extra steps and time to really understand our clients need to be able to better serve them and provide the best suitable information and advice for our client. mortgage calculator

As mortgage professionals we have access to an advanced industry grade professional mortgage calculator that takes into consideration all the needed numbers and information in order to provide accurate results.

Whether you are ready now to apply for a mortgage or just wondering how much you could get approved for, or want to know what would be your monthly mortgage payments, we suggest that you Contact Us, at no cost to you of course, and let us help you and answer all your mortgage related questions.

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Mortgage for Cottage

Mortgage for Cottage

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Getting a Mortgage for Cottage Could be Within Your Reach

Do you have a dream cottage that you plan to own one day? You’ve probably been doing the whole cottage rental thing every summer, paying a weekly or daily cottage rental fee to go up North to that amazing spot by the lake with the family and friends. Many people feel that cottage ownership is out of reach and reality for them due to high cottage prices. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

mortgage for cottage

Mortgage for Cottage is attainable for more people than you think

Planning is key to buying any real estate, cottage property included. What better time than when you’re young and just started your career to put money aside on a monthly basis. For those families who already own a house and are starting to build equity on their property and paying down the mortgage, it can be an opportunity to use it for a down payment on the cottage.  There are so many different case scenarios that each one should be looked at on its own merits.

How does getting a Mortgage for Cottage work?

Like any other mortgage application for purchasing real estate the same process is involved with getting a mortgage for cottage. Best is to work with a Mortgage Broker or Mortgage Agent as they have specialized experience and skills with mortgages and have access to multiple lenders who would entertain your cottage mortgage application.

There are three main areas that you have to consider when applying for a mortgage for cottage:

(1) Income / Employment

Like any other loan application the lender needs to make sure you can afford to pay the monthly principal and interest payments on their loan / mortgage. Whether you are employed or self-employed it is possible to apply for a mortgage for cottage. You just need to be able to show proof of income and employment or self-employment through such things as pay stub, and employment letters for those who are employed, and business licenses, articles of incorporation, Government tax filings showing self-employed declared income for those who are self-employed.

(2) Down Payment

There is no such thing as a free mortgage. In Canada you need to have at least 5% of the purchase price from your own resources. Meaning you can’t borrow money from individuals (excluding immediate family), or companies, or a lender to pay for your down payment. You must be able to show that you have that money in your bank accounts or other investments. Many people don’t realize that there are still a few lenders out there who will entertain a mortgage for cottage application with as low as 5% down. Remember that the less down payment you provide the more income you will need since the total mortgage amount will be higher than if you had more down payment.

(3) Historically strong and healthy Credit

And the third main item that the lenders look at when someone applies for a mortgage is how strong and healthy their credit report is. There should be at least a two year history of credit activity in your credit report from Equifax and Transunion, who are the two main credit reporting agencies in Canada. Lenders don’t like to see late payments, credit collections, or bankruptcy’s in your report. This is not a good sign that you are able to pay back money you borrow.

 

Trusterra Mortgage is here to Help

We’re here to help from the start to the finish, working along your side until all is done. Have you been considering the idea of cottage ownership? Not sure if you could afford to buy a cottage property? With any questions you have don’t hesitate to Contact Us.  And its no cost to you; a win-win situation!

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Mortgage Brokers

Mortgage Brokers

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Why work with Trusterra Mortgage Brokers you ask?

That’s a good question. Trusterra Mortgage likes to think of it as a win-win situation for the consumer when they work with Mortgage Brokers. There are many reasons why you should work with Trusterra Mortgage Brokers.

mortgage brokers

Advantages of working with Trusterra Mortgage Brokers

  • Trusterra Mortgage helps you explore options that will make you earn and save more money
  • Trusterra Mortgage will assist you in securing a competitive interest rate
  • Trusterra Mortgage shops around for the best rate and product for your unique needs
  • To avoid frequent credit checks / hits to your name, Trusterra Mortgage only does one credit check and uses the same one to share with multiple lenders if required
  • Trusterra Mortgage is working for your best interest and is not biased towards one particular lender and their products
  • Whether you are employed, self-employed, commission based, bad or good credit, Trusterra Mortgage has access to a diverse group of mortgage programs and products for your circumstance
  • With over 10 years of professional experience Trusterra Mortgage has the accumulated knowledge and know-how to get the job done the first time around
  • For those odd and isolated instances that we cannot get you a mortgage we will be honest with you and tell you upfront

We’re here to help. Contact us with any questions you have about mortgages. If you’re in the process of purchasing your first home, or second property, or need to refinance to consolidate your debts or anything else, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

 

Relevant posts and links you might like to check out

Beginners Guide to Owning a Mortgage

Why Your Credit Score is Important

Resources for Home Buyers and Sellers

CREA Resources for Buyers and Sellers

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Mortgage Panic

Mortgage Panic

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Having a Mortgage Panic incident?

mortgage panic

Well, don’t panic. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. As home prices in major cities across Canada increase they become less and less attainable by the average Canadian. Naturally this is a cause of concern, or shall we say a Mortgage Panic, as many first time home buyers could be pushed out of the market.

Sometimes a mortgage panic is justifiable and sometimes it isn’t. We’re here to help you figure out whether your mortgage panic attacks are rightly so or not. As well, we should keep in mind that maybe its just not your time to buy your first home, because if you do it could put you in a real mortgage panic as the mortgage payments start to pile up and put stress on the other parts of your financial responsibilities.

That’s why we always advise the consumer to first consult with a mortgage professional and have them analyze your financial health and strength. You can call it a personal financial stress test.

A common result of a mortgage panic is confusion

Confusion as to what steps to take first, then second and so on. When in a mortgage panic mode you can inadvertently create unduly high stress levels and further confusion as to what to do with the whole home buying process. Many times when we consult with our clients it becomes clear for them where they stand in the affordability chart and it provides them with a sound level of knowledge to make an informed decision as to whether to buy their first home or to wait a little longer.

If you are feeling the mortgage panic and the confusion coming we advise you to contact us so that we can consult with you, and bring things down to perspective, which will in turn calm you down allowing you to better assess your situation and make the right decisions.

At the end

You find out that there is in fact a light at the end of the tunnel and your mortgage panic will disappear allowing you to start working towards your home ownership goals and dreams. After the consultation and analysis of your financial health and reality we will advise you on what steps to take next. For example, it may be that you don’t have enough down payment, and all you have to do is to spend the next year saving more money. Or it may be that your credit score is poor. The goal here would be to accompany you and guide you on what to do to improve the health of your credit report and its score, known as the beacon score. It could even be a combination of several issues that need attention and nourishment.

So don’t be shy and reach out to us. We’re here to help!

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Home Equity Line of Credit

Home Equity Line of Credit

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What is a Home Equity Line of Credit?

A HELOC or Home Equity Line of Credit is a secured line of credit against your property. Just like a personal line of credit, which is unsecured, a home equity line of credit gives you access to a revolving line of credit but at a much lower interest rate than a personal line of credit.

home equity line of credit

More Equity on your home = More Home Equity Line of Credit limit

In Canada regulations limit how much you can be approved for a Home Equity Line of Credit. You can have a HELOC limit of up to 65% of the appraised value of your personal residence.  Therefore the faster you pay down your mortgage, or the more down payment you provide when purchasing your home the faster you can get access to the HELOC.

Where can you get a Home Equity Line of Credit?

All the Chartered Canadian Banks offer home equity lines of credits along with their portfolio of mortgage products. As well, some of the mortgage lenders, mono line lenders, also offer HELOC’s, but not all.

How do I get approved for a Home Equity Line of Credit?

When you apply for a mortgage is the time that your mortgage broker professional would also request for a HELOC for you. The approval of a home equity line of credit will be based on which lender you are applying to, your income to debt ratios, and whether there is enough equity in your home, or in another way to say it . . . how much mortgage you have in comparison to the value of your home.

You do not necessarily need to get a mortgage in order to be approved for a home equity line of credit. Should your home be free and clear, or if you have been living in it for a long time and the value in comparison to the mortgage balance is significantly greater, then you can also apply for a HELOC.

Why do I need a HELOC, what would I use it for?

A home equity line of credit can be a very handy and effective resource to have for when you need extra money at low interest rates. You can use your HELOC for many different purposes. Here are a few common ones:

– pay down high credit card debts

– use towards purchasing a second property or investment property

– a source of emergency money for when the need arises

– purchasing larger items that are expensive enough that you would not want to pay by cash

What is the interest rate for a Home Equity Line of Credit?

Home equity lines of credit interest rates are based on the lenders prime rate plus a certain percentage. With most lenders HELOC rates range anywhere from Prime +.50% to Prime +1.0% depending on the credit limit. The higher the limit the better the discount.

 

Have you been considering getting a Home Equity Line of Credit but not sure if you are qualified for one, or how much you can be approved for? Contact us and we would be happy to help you with your HELOC inquiry’s.

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Check Your Credit Report

Check Your Credit Report

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Did you know that you can check your credit report for free?

That’s right, once a year you can ask the credit reporting agencies Equifax and Transunion for free to mail you, or you can pick it up in person, your personal credit report. If you need it faster, you can always create an account online with them and quickly pull your credit report and save it electronically for future reference. Otherwise, if you have the time, you can wait for your personal credit report to arrive in the mail.

check your credit, equifax, transunion, score

Check your credit report once a year

It is recommended to check your credit report once a year. This regular interval is helpful to prevent fraud, because when you check your credit report you can see exactly all your credit activities and if someone fraudulently uses your credit information it will be noticed and can be rectified immediately.  Alternatively, if left unchecked and only noticed some time later when you apply for a credit card, or a car loan, or for a mortgage, and then at that point it is noticed, the problem can set you back with your applications as you first will need to resolve the issue(s).

It is educational and informative to check your credit report

When you check your credit report not only do you see a credit score, but you see everything about your credit activity and history in the last seven years. You learn what is being reported to the credit bureaus, what your balances, are and also you might see credit items that you thought were closed or canceled or paid off still no closed or not canceled or not paid off. This gives you time to go after the discrepancies and rectify the problem, because it could be negatively affecting your credit strength and score.

Government of Canada has information on how to check your credit score

We are thankful to the Government in being proactive in providing helpful information and tools that assist the consumer in learning about how to manage their debts and improving their credit strengths.

To learn more about how to check your credit score or find out about the different tools on their web site, check out the following links:

Financial Consumer Agency of Canada

“How to Order your Own Credit Report”

“Understanding your Credit Report and Credit Score”

 

Trusterra Mortgage is also hear to help. Should you have any questions about credit score and how it affects your mortgage approval rating do not hesitate to Contact Us. We would be happy to assist you.

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