What Does a Mortgage Broker Do For You?

Hi everyone! I hope you’re all enjoying the end of October! Halloween is right around the corner – and if you’re a home owner, that means trick-or-treaters are right around the corner as well. I hope you’re all stocked up on candy!

But maybe you’re not a home owner – or at least not yet – and you’re who this post is really directed to (for all the people hoping for a breakdown of my favourite chocolate bars, I’m sorry to disappoint). You see, I meet with a lot of first time home buyers who don’t necessarily know all the different options available to them. And that’s not their fault at all – buying a home can be an overwhelming process, and it’s likely the single biggest purchase many of us will ever make. So there’s a lot of pressure involved to get it right, and that’s why there are so many people who make a career out of alleviating that pressure. Real estate agents, for example, facilitate the process of finding the perfect home. A lot of people are very comfortable with that idea, and it’s easy to understand why hiring one might be good practice. But mortgage brokers are another group dedicated to home buyers, and it’s sometimes less obvious how our services are helpful.

So to all you first time (or not!) home buyers out there, let me make it a little clearer: mortgage brokers don’t just get you a mortgage, they get you your mortgage.

I’ll break that down a bit, and I’ll compare it to real estate agents again. It’s not that you’re not capable of finding your own home to buy (you absolutely are!), it’s just that real estate agents are able to tailor your search to your specific needs. They know your buying limit, the size of your family, your location preferences, and they match that up to every home on the market to provide you with the options that fit only with what you’re looking for. In short, they find you your home, and they do so in the most efficient way possible. Mortgage brokers do the exact same thing, but for your mortgage. Our knowledge of the industry, our years of experience, and our relationships with multiple lenders give us the ability to fine-tune your mortgage search, and to provide you with the most perfect option. It’s not that you won’t be able to find a mortgage on your own (again, you absolutely can!), it’s just that it’ll be a much longer, less accurate process.

And unfortunately, you have a lot to lose if you sign a mortgage that doesn’t work for you. Ultimately, and in the simplest terms, that’s exactly what I (and mortgage brokers) do: we make mortgages work for you. Not everyone fits in the same box, but if you walk into a bank looking for a mortgage they’ll give you the same form they give everyone else. That’s the problem I help solve – not only do I provide tailored service, I can get you better rates (and if there’s one reason to use a mortgage broker, it should be that).

Since I’ve opened my store in downtown Dawson Creek, I’ve had several clients come in who were freshly turned down by the banks. This happens for a variety of reasons – not being able to borrow from their unsecured line of credit, for example – but to me it doesn’t matter. I have access to over 40 lenders besides the Big 6 Banks, and I can find you your perfect mortgage no matter what.

Here’s something else I want everyone to know, and especially those of you first time home buyers who may not be aware of it – if you have good credit, and you qualify, you can borrow the down payment from an unsecured line of credit. Again, that’s something I can help you with, and it’s the kind of useful information you might not come across without a mortgage broker.

So whether you’re a first time home buyer, renewing your mortgage, or a seasoned buyer, I’m here to help you with all your mortgage needs. The title of this post is “What Does a Mortgage Broker Do For You?” and the answer, in short, is this: whatever you need us to.

Lori Lalonde, Your Northern BC Mortgage Broker

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How Mortgage Brokers Get Paid: A Friendly Reminder

Hey everyone! It’s been a busy month for me as I settle into my new Dawson Creek office. For all the novel challenges that experience has brought me, the fact that it’s a mortgage office means I’m facing a lot of familiar challenges, too. Don’t get me wrong! I love my mortgage broker business, and if I didn’t love those familiar challenges it wouldn’t have been very smart of me to expand it. That said, there are a few misconceptions surrounding mortgage brokers that I see day in and day out – and that’s an obstacle I wouldn’t complain about getting rid of for good.

The most important issue I want to clarify is this: how in the world do mortgage brokers like myself get paid?

This is a question that’s dear to my heart, because it’s one I get asked several times a week by prospective clients. And it’s a perfectly fair question! It’s obvious that mortgage brokers aren’t simply volunteering their time, and (as much as we love what we do!) we couldn’t work if we weren’t getting paid. Most people – rather understandably, to be honest – assume that by using a mortgage broker, their mortgage payments are somehow feeding our salaries. And so the problem for consumers is this: why should I pay a mortgage broker to get me a mortgage when I can do it just fine on my own?

And here’s the answer, highlighted in bold so it’s impossible to miss:

Most of the time, you aren’t the one paying your mortgage broker at all.

Here’s how it works. When you go to a mortgage broker for help, we reach out to our extended network of lenders to find a mortgage that’s tailored specifically to your needs. That’s the first, most obvious benefit of using our services: you get to ditch the cookie-cutter mortgages offered by the banks in favour of something custom designed for you. That’s a big benefit, and it’s why a lot of people think they have to pay directly for it. But 99% of the time, the lender we send the deal to pays us directly. That means no cost to you, and I think the reason a lot of people are hesitant to go to a mortgage broker is because that sounds too good to be true… but it is! And if you’re still skeptical, why not give me a call at (250)-782-9665 or sit down with me directly? You’ll never owe me money unless I get you a mortgage – and again, 99% of the time you won’t owe me anything at all.

Let’s get that 1% out of the way right now, because I want to be completely transparent – there are certain cases where you’ll have to pay some money out of pocket. This only applies to clients whose credit history prevents the traditional banks and lenders from approving a loan (for example: a past bankruptcy, a repossessed car or truck, etc). In rare cases like that, the only option might be to contact a private lender, in which case there might be an associated fee.

And that’s it! That’s how mortgage brokers are paid, as plainly as I can explain it. My primary focus in this profession is to get people their perfect mortgage, and if I charged them tooth and nail to do that, it wouldn’t be a very productive endeavour. That’s why in the majority of cases, I don’t charge my clients at all. And if you need to go through a private lender for you mortgage, it’s still better to work with a broker than to wade through those waters on your own. In either scenario, there’s no harm in talking to me about it first. Sit down with me for a quick consultation, and if you still don’t like the sound of my mortgage services, then it’ll have cost you nothing. And if you do like the sound of my services, all the better! It’s a no-lose situation, and what you stand to gain is the perfect mortgage.

I’ll be waiting in my new office if you want to come and chat!

Lori Lalonde, Your Northern BC Mortgage Broker

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