Preparing For a Mortgage: Are You Ready to Buy?

Hi all! Michele Ellis here with another post for the Mortgage Studio blog. Today’s topic is something that I deal with every day as a professional mortgage broker: how do you save money when looking for a mortgage? But right now I want to talk not about what I do but about what you can do. My number one piece of advice for anyone looking to save money on their mortgage is, of course, to give me a call – but that’s not all there is. Here are a few of my favourite tips for getting the most out of your mortgage:

1) Build Your Credit

Having good credit is an absolute priority when trying to purchase a home, so you want to make sure you’re in a good financial position before you start looking for a mortgage. You can request access to your credit report (this link runs down exactly how to do that), but the principles of improving your credit score are pretty straightforward: always pay your bills on time and in full, pay your debts as quickly as possible, and stay under the credit limit on your credit cards. If that still sounds daunting, don’t worry! I have lots of experience helping Canadians establish or rebuild their credit, and I’d be happy to help you, too. All the information you need is just a phone call away!

2) Get Pre-approved For A Mortgage

Getting pre-approved for a mortgage means filling out a mortgage application before you even go house hunting, which, if successful, means you’ll know exactly how much money you’ll realistically be able to spend on a home. More than that, it sends a clear message to sellers that any offer you put down is serious – and, most importantly, that it will be approved. Sometimes, that certainty is just the advantage you need to seal the deal!

3) Know What You Want, But Also What You Can Afford

Building off the previous tips, it’s important to be aware of what kind of mortgage is the best fit for your life. It’s a cliche to say that buying a house is the biggest investment you’ll ever make, but it’s cliche for a reason. You want to have a very clear picture of the amount of debt you can take on before you start looking for homes, because it’s a lot easier to find a house that fits your budget than to find a budget that fits your house. There are a lot of imperfect mortgages out there, and it’s easy to look at them and figure you can work out the details later. But if you put in the extra effort up front, you can get your perfect mortgage straight off the bat – because I promise, that’s out there too.

So what does that extra effort entail? That’s up to you, but I know what I would recommend: a single phone call to an experienced mortgage broker (my number, again, is 604.892.4647). I know that sounds like cheating, since I said these tips were things you could do yourself – but the truth is that as a mortgage broker, I’ve consulted with hundreds of people in the exact same position as you. I have first-hand experience consulting on credit, securing pre-approved loans, and finding perfect mortgages. So sure, you could do it on your own – but why would you? Mortgage brokers get paid by lenders directly, so you don’t pay a dime. You get to have an experienced professional with you every step of the way, at no cost. The single best thing you can do for your mortgage is to take advantage of that!

Until then – have a great weekend!

Michele Ellis – Senior Mortgage Broker, The Mortgage Studio