Should I work with a mortgage broker?

Should I work with a mortgage broker?

When it comes time to apply for a mortgage, a lot of people just head to the bank. The mortgage rep offers them a rate, they say yes – and that’s all she wrote. But when you’re trying to find the best rate or you have special circumstances (less-than-ideal credit, your own business, etc.), limiting yourself to one lender won’t do you any favours. In fact, it can end up costing you thousands over the course of your mortgage.

Would you walk into a dealership and buy a car without checking out similar models from other manufacturers – or without seeing if you can get a better deal across town? A mortgage will be ten or twenty times the cost of a car, so it definitely pays to shop around.

But you definitely don’t have to do that legwork yourself. A mortgage broker will do it all for you and it won’t cost you a cent. Brokers typically have relationships with dozens of lenders, so that means you get access to a lot more options than you could find on your own, and it’s a lot easier to choose the one that’s right for you and your specific situation.

How it works

Mortgage brokers typically offer their services for free to buyers; they get a commission from the lender. They start off by reviewing your financials and mortgage application to make sure you're making the best case for a great loan with a low rate. And an experienced broker won’t just get you a good rate: they’ll know which lenders will look at your application favourably. So even if you’re self-employed or new to Canada, they can tell you who to turn to for the best result.

Something else to keep in mind
Mortgage brokers tend to be professionals who have chosen a career in helping people find financing for their homes. But at the bank level, chances are you’ll be working with someone who is using personal lending as a stepping stone in their career, not as a dedicated focus. So you may not get the experience or dedication a mortgage broker can provide (and, of course, you’re only getting access to that one bank’s products, which limits your options in a big way).

How do you find a great mortgage broker? Ask your Condo Pro for a reco: they’ve worked with many financing professionals over the years, and they’ll know exactly who’s good – and who will be able to help you find the mortgage that’s exactly right for you.

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