14 Dec

Your quick guide to your best short-term financing options.

Mortgage Tips

Posted by: Tyler Cowle

Short-term financing – credit or loans that are designed to be paid off in a short period of time – can be a useful financial tool in a variety of different situations, such as:

  • Bridge financing

If you’re planning on moving and have found a new home before selling your existing one, you may need a short-term loan to make a down payment on the new place.

  • Seizing an investment opportunity

If an opportunity arises, a quick injection of cash will enable you to take advantage of it.

  • Consolidating debt

If you have multiple different loans, you can consolidate them into one single loan if you find one with a lower interest rate.

  • Covering unexpected expenses

Accessing some short-term cash will let you cover unplanned expenses, such as paying off medical bills or helping out an adult child during a period of unemployment.

But what are the different types of short-term financing options? And how do you know which are right for your situation?

Short-term financing options

Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC)

A HELOC is a revolving line of credit secured against your home, typically allowing you to borrow up to 80% of your home’s value.


  • Interest rates are typically low.
  • You have flexibility over when you pay it off.
  • You can access portions of the approved sum at different times.
  • You therefore only pay off and pay interest on the amount you access.


  • Retirees can find it hard to qualify, particularly if they don’t have a regular income or a strong credit score.

Private Loan or Mortgage

These are loans which typically have a period of one year.


  • They’re usually fairly easy to qualify for if your home has enough equity.


  • Set-up fees and interest rates are typically high.

Short-Term Installment Loan

These are loans in which set amounts are repaid at regular intervals for the term of the loan.


  • You pay it off in installments rather than all at once.


  • Unlike a credit card or line of credit, you can’t access portions of the approved sum at different times.
  • They can include hidden prepayment fees.

Payday Loan

A payday loan is a short-term loan characterized by very high interest.


  • Usually easy to qualify for.
  • You can often access them even if you have a bad credit score.


  • Interest rates are extremely high – often exceeding 300% over a year.

Convertible Mortgage

These are short-term mortgages, typically six months, with a fixed interest rate.


  • They can be switched to a long-term mortgage if you choose.


  • They usually have a higher interest rate than adjustable rate loans.

Cross Collateralization

This is when the collateral of one loan, such as a car, is used to secure another loan you have with the same lender.


  • Interest rates can be lower.


  • The lender may keep you from selling the asset being used as collateral, even if you have paid it off.

A New Short-Term Financing Option

CHIP Open is a new, short-term financing product offered by HomeEquity Bank. It’s a reverse mortgage which allows you to access up to 55% of the value of your home in tax-free cash. However, unlike a traditional reverse mortgage, there are no prepayment fees, meaning you can pay off the full amount whenever you like.


  • Easier to qualify for than other short-term products since its not based on income or credit rating.
  • No monthly repayments.
  • Interest rate and fees are highly competitive in the short-term lending space.
  • If you decide you need a longer-term solution, you can switch to the CHIP Reverse Mortgage at a lower interest rate.


  • Only available for Canadians 55+.
  • You must own your home.
  • Interest rates are higher than the regular CHIP Reverse Mortgage, allowing us to completely waive any prepayment penalties.

If you’d like to find out more about how CHIP Open can help you with your short-term financing needs, contact a DLC Mortgage Professional today!

Published by Home Equity Bank!

13 Dec

Renewing Your Mortgage.


Posted by: Tyler Cowle

Did you know? Close to 70 percent of mortgages never make it to the end of their term! This means that, for a variety of reasons, homeowners are ending their mortgages early. However, that still leaves a solid 30 percent of home buyers who keep their mortgage until the term is up and it is time to renew!

If you are not planning to move in the near future and are happy with your current mortgage, you are likely one of the 30 percent who will renew once the term ends. So what does this process look like?

When it comes time to renew your mortgage, most lenders will send you a renewal letter when there is around 3 months remaining on your term. While nearly 60 percent of borrowers simply sign and send back their renewal without ever shopping around for a more favorable interest rate, this is actually the best time to check out your options.

Most standard terms are 5-year terms and, with that much time having passed since signing, the market rates could be very different once the term is up! Despite this, lenders tend to provide higher rates on renewals versus new clients as they are hoping that the ease of renewal will prevent you from seeking out new rates. However, shopping around for a better rate is not as difficult as it sounds – especially with the help of a mortgage broker – and it could end up saving you a couple hundred dollars a month (depending on your situation)! Ideally, you should be keeping track of your own mortgage term end date as shopping for a new rate between four and six months before your expiry will ensure you are able to find the most affordable option for you.

After shopping around, you may find that your bank is actually offering a great rate – in which case you can simply submit the renewal! But if you are able to seek out a lower rate, we promise you will thank yourself for putting in the effort to find out! As another point of interest, renewal time is also a great time to make an extra payment on your mortgage, if you are able!

Beyond renewing your mortgage, home owners also have the option to transfer or switch the mortgage. This can be done any time during the term of the mortgage but may have penalties associated with breaking the mortgage before the term is up. Transferring to another lender is generally done to get a better rate, but you will need to go through the entire mortgage process again – including the ‘stress test’ – which makes shopping around at renewal time an even smarter option.

If your mortgage is coming up for renewal and you want to find out what lower rates may await you, contact your local mortgage professional! They can help you find the best option for where you are at in your life now and help you to ensure future financial success.

Published by the DLC Marketing Team!

10 Dec

Tis the Season of Staying Motivated.


Posted by: Tyler Cowle

The winter holiday season is often said to be the most wonderful time of the year. However, it is also one of the busiest and most stressful times of the year. There are increased demands at work or in your business. The holidays tend to be socially demanding too. With all this going on at work and in your personal life, it can be very emotionally draining. This time of year is often centered on celebration, family, and friends. The fact is some people find themselves mired in family conflict or feeling lonely, heightening their levels of emotional stress.

Unfortunately, the pressure during these months can cause us to get distracted from some of our most important goals. No matter what your goals may be, many people find it difficult to stay motivated.


Here are six tips I use help me stay motivated during the holidays:

  1. Write your goals down. Carve out 30 minutes of your time to sit down without any distractions (turn your phone on airplane mode if you have to) and write down each goal you have on one side of a cue card. You should keep it to three goals or else your mind gets overwhelmed.
  2. Know why. Review each goal and write down why you want to achieve it. On the back or your cue card, write down how it will make you feel once you accomplish your goal, and also add any new opportunities that might arise through the process of achieving what you set out to do.
  3. Goal planning. The reason we normally forget about our goals during the holidays is that there is so much going on and there are so many distractions. Make sure to look at your goals and review them each morning when you wake up. Pro tip: keep them on your bedside table and read them when you first wake up (before checking your phone)!
  4. Break them down. Instead of just focusing on the end goal, break the steps toward the goal down into manageable tasks that you can complete within 10 minutes or less. If you are able to break each goal up into that time frame then you will be able to move forward with your goals each and every day with no excuses!
  5. Involve family and friends. It will be much easier to achieve your goals if your family and friends are on board and cheering you on. However, they cannot support you if you don’t tell them. Share your goals along with the reasons behind them so you can have people keep you on track.
  6. Allow yourself to enjoy the holidays. Whether your goals are work-, life- or health-related, focusing and moving forward on your goals doesn’t mean you can’t also enjoy yourself! If you have a health goal, still allow yourself to enjoy that pie (in moderation, of course). If the goal is more career-centred, take time away from your laptop to enjoy social events and holiday parties. You will feel more refreshed and inspired when you take time away.

Above all, give yourself some grace during the holidays, remembering that the reason you want to work hard for this life is to experience more of it! Don’t be too rigid making it all about productivity; celebrate the small steps and reward yourself often! You will see the results which will motivate you to do more and make you feel confident as you enter the New Year.

Published by the DLC Marketing Team!

1 Nov

Finding Your Financial Freedom.

Mortgage Tips

Posted by: Tyler Cowle

Many Canadians will spend their entire lives without proper financial education. With the help of Enriched Academy, an online financial education platform, Our House Magazine has collected some insight and tips from experts on financial literacy to help Canadians achieve their dreams, from homeownership to a comfy retirement.

Money. It’s virtually impossible to get by in life without it, and everyone wants more of it. But many people struggle to manage their money and make it work for them. And all the stats are going in the wrong direction. More and more Canadians are struggling with debt and get by living paycheque-to-paycheque with no idea or strategy on how to turn it around.

Luckily there are many resources out there to help guide you in the right direction. How you use the information to form a strategy will determine your financial future. Jay Seabrook is the co-founder of Enriched Academy, an educational program dedicated to providing financial literacy and awareness to teens and adults.

He explained that most people don’t even get started on a healthy financial journey because of some basic money myths like, you need money to make money or it’s too complicated to understand.

Seabrook suggested there are two key metrics people need to be aware of: their net worth and how much is needed to save every month to reach financial freedom.

Net worth is a valuation of your assets minus your liabilities or what you own and subtracting what you owe. While a general rule of thumb is putting away 10 per cent of your pre-tax income a month, Seabrook suggested the number may not be enough to meet your financial goal. You’ll need to create a proper budget to determine that number you really need to put away to reach your goals.

He added by getting a handle on those two aspects and tracking them on a regular basis, chances of getting to financial freedom are dramatically higher.

Financial literacy is something deeply personal to the 42-year-old entrepreneur.

Like most people, Seabrook grew up with very little financial education. That reality hit home after college when he moved to Whistler, B.C. for work. While he was surrounded by some of the wealthiest people in the world, he couldn’t scrounge enough money for a ski pass – the purpose of moving to the resort community in the first place.

Seabrook didn’t turn his fortunes around until he met a mentor who showed him a path forward.

“Life is a buffet table of the things you can do, but I was on the bread and water part of the buffet table, and I have no idea how to get access to rest of it. It drove me crazy,” he told Our House Magazine. “I wanted this better life, but I didn’t know how to get it.”

By the mid-2000s, Seabrook got into the ground floor of an upstart mortgage company in Dominion Lending Centres. He eventually invested in the company and worked his way up to VP of operations. Along the way, he met his business partner and Enriched Co-founder Kevin Cochran, who was also finding success at DLC. The two entrepreneurs used their own personal experience and what they had learned over the years to create the educational platform. Enriched launched in 2011, and short time later Seabrook and Cochran got a break with a winning pitch to the Dragons’ Den that eventually grew to its current online education platform.

Now the two entrepreneurs are busy teaching the techniques and tools they’ve learned to a mass audience. Seabrook was quick to point out financial freedom won’t happen overnight, but it doesn’t take a lifetime to get there either.

“It’s actually a lot easier than people think,” he said, adding the “biggest hurdle for most people is suppressing the instant gratification of spending in the moment”.

“People spend their entire lives trying to make money, why? They want a nice lifestyle and get to a point where they can enjoy the best things in life, but if you don’t have a plan, you probably won’t get there. If you’re really serious about getting to a place where you make more money from passive income than all the hours you put in, you have to start learning it. If you get clear on some of your goals, you’ll get there.”

11 Aug

Choosing Your Mortgage Broker.


Posted by: Tyler Cowle

There is a little doubt that the biggest purchase of your life will be your home. When embarking on your homeownership journey, having the right support and information will make all the difference. Fortunately, a mortgage broker can help!

With access to more than 230 lending institutions including big banks, credit unions and trust companies, mortgage brokers are experts in mortgages. These connections allow them familiarity with a vast array of available mortgage products, and also ensures that the advice they offer is unbiased. Unlike banks focused on signing you for profit reasons, a mortgage broker is a third-party service who gets paid no matter which bank they sign you with. This means they can provide the best rate AND unbiased advice because they are focused on helping you achieve your dream.

It is estimated there are nearly 20,000 mortgage professionals in Canada. With so many choices, it is important to find a mortgage broker who works best FOR you.

With so much information at your fingertips on any given broker, it is easier to help narrow down the search. Especially with tools like the Dominion Lending Centres exclusive My Mortgage Toolbox app. Available on Google Play and the iStore, My Mortgage Toolbox makes it easy for potential homeowners to find a mortgage broker nearest them!

“The idea behind My Mortgage Toolbox was to make it simple for Canadians to manage the mortgage process by putting all the information they need into the palm of their hand,” noted Gary Mauris, Founder and CEO of Dominion Lending Centres.

Some features available through this application include a variety of calculators to help clients determine:

  1. What they can afford
  2. The minimum down payment required
  3. Closing cost estimates
  4. Total monthly ownership costs

Click here to download the app today!

While online tools and apps can give you pretty good insight into a potential broker, there are a few other things you might also want to consider to help make that decision a little easier.

While it is never a bad idea to go with an established professional with an abundance of clients and years of experience, you should also open to considering newer, hungrier brokers who are striving to make their mark in the mortgage space. At a busy firm, it is easy for you to feel like a small fish in a big pond, especially with a smaller portfolio, whereas a smaller brokerage can likely provide you more attention.

While brokers spend a lot of their time neck-deep in mortgages and tend to use industry jargon, a professional broker will understand if you are a first time homebuyer and will do their best to explain the terms and the process to you. Understanding is vital in your homeownership journey  so make sure to seek out a broker who is going to keep it simple for you and be honest, allowing you to understand exactly what you’re getting in your mortgage.

Ultimately, it comes down to the mortgage product but don’t be blinded by interest rates. It is important that your broker explains everything to you from term conditions to penalties, as well as why you qualified for the rate you need. It is also important to use caution if a broker is selling you on a rate and making promises to pay a fee; this is a red flag. If they say they’re going to pay for everything, they’re desperate for anything.

Of course, the rate matters, but the characteristics of your mortgage matter more and could end up costing you in the long run. You want a broker who’s going to listen to you and ask you about your needs and future goals. What are your plans five or ten years from now? Why are they so important to you as an individual? When looking at any mortgage product, consider that nearly 70 percent of mortgages are broken within three years. Even if you’re sure of today, life happens and tomorrow could be different. Therefore, you must consider the penalties for ducking out of your mortgage earlier and you should know if it is portable.

The best mortgage brokers in the business will make sure all of your bases are covered, and you’re fully aware of what you’re signing onto. The right broker will make the process easier for you, whether it’s buying your first home, shopping for a better rate, or even jumping into investment properties. No matter what stage of life you are in, we’ve got a mortgage product – and a broker – for that!

Published by the DLC Marketing Team

10 Aug

Build Financial Confidence Through Self-Empowerment.


Posted by: Tyler Cowle

The blueprint for financial freedom needs rewriting, and we have an opportunity to completely rethink success – like measuring wealth not just in dollars, but also in financial confidence. But what does financial confidence look like? It’s a feeling of having a sense of control of your financial situation, and one that gives you a much stronger chance of fulfilling the goals that matter to you. It also means being prepared for the future. So where does it start?

One of the best things you can do for your financial confidence – and your financial future – is to develop consistent savings habits. The EQ Bank Savings Plus Account offers 1.25%* interest every day with zero fees, no minimum deposits or balance, and unlimited transactions and Interac e-Transfers®. And you can even divide your money up into different categories, or buckets, while still earning high interest on each of them.

Here’s how it works: if you have multiple savings goals, like bulking up an emergency fund, saving for a vacation, and maintaining a foodie fund, you can set up an automatic transfer that deposits a set amount into each of your accounts. But it means sticking to your budgets for each bucket.

Any learning process means practice makes perfect, so make peace with that fact that when it comes to figuring out your savings goals and budgets, you’re going to make mistakes. See them for what they are (life lessons!), rejig, and try again. When it comes to building your budget, stnce is here for you. If you subscribe on stnce.ca, you’ll get immediate access to stnce’s free budgeting tool

EQ Bank – a digital bank launched by Equitable Bank – has set out to accomplish just that with stnce, their financial confidence initiative aimed inclusively at all Canadians. What began as an internal program designed for Equitable Bank employees has grown into a grassroots movement with a mission to inspire others to confidently take control of their money.

Published by the DLC Marketing Team

4 Aug

Roll With It.

Mortgage Tips

Posted by: Tyler Cowle

Fitness trainer Mandy Gill makes the case for Summer Salad Rolls!

Call them spring rolls, summer rolls, salad rolls, fresh rolls—the common denominator is that we’re certain these are the only kind of rolls you’ll want this summer.

This easy-to-make recipe, bursting with flavour, can be served as a side dish at a sunny barbecue or enjoyed as a full meal on its own. The cost to make rolls at home is a fraction of what you’d pay in a restaurant or grocery store—plus you can add in whatever ingredients you’d like.

I choose to order nearly all the items below directly to my doorstep from Vitasave.ca, which has options for free shipping across Canada and a commitment to make healthy living easy and affordable for everyone. It’s also vegan, gluten-free and dairy-free.

Summer Salad Rolls

Serving: 8-10 rolls

Total Time: 30 min

  • 1 package spring roll rice paper wrappers (found in the Asian section of your local grocery store; go for the option with little to no added sodium)
  • 1 head romaine lettuce (finely chopped)
  • 4-5 large rainbow carrots (peeled into thin ribbons)
  • ¼ cup chia seeds
  • ¼ cup hemp seeds
  • ½ cup fresh mint (this completes the flavour)
  • » ½ cup Thai basil (sub cilantro if needed)


  1. Take a rice paper and dip it into warm water. Immediately pull it out of the water, letting it drip off for a second before placing it onto a clean surface with a bit of grip (a cutting board works well).
  2. Lay carrots side by side in the center of the rice paper. This is where the colour will come from.
  3. Layer lettuce, mint, Thai basil, hemp and chia seeds on top.
  4. Pull up the bottom of the rice paper wrapper like you would to wrap a burrito, tucking the sides, and meeting at the top edge.
    1. *Tip: use the first roll as an experiment (and the one you eat), seeing as it likely won’t be your prettiest!
  5. Cut in half with a sharp knife and serve with the Lemon Garlic Tahini sauce.

Lemon Garlic Tahini

Serving: 2/3 cup

  • ½ cup tahini (from raw or roasted sesame seeds)
  • ¼ cup warm water, plus more as needed
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 tbsp Flavorgod, lemon & garlic
  • Squeeze of lemon, salt & pepper to taste


  1. Add tahini, avocado oil, Flavorgod lemon & garlic, and a squeeze of lemon into a small mixing bowl. Combine together.
  2. Add water a little at a time, continuing to whisk, until you have a creamy sauce. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  3. If you have any leftover sauce, it can be kept in the fridge for 1-2 weeks. It’s delicious on salads, falafel, veggie burgers, and much more!

Published by the DLC Marketing Team!

3 Aug

Throw the Perfect Summer Social.


Posted by: Tyler Cowle

Throw the Perfect Summer Social.

There’s something magical about summer and no matter where you live in Canada, backyard BBQ season is the perfect opportunity to spend a little time with family and friends. Nothing says party vibes more than food on the grill and summer drinks flowing. Whether you live in a country house, a suburban townhome or a city condo, gather your crew and these few essentials.


The best parties start and end with good food and refreshing bevies. To have the most success with your backyard party, you must pre-plan!

If you are not hosting a spontaneous gathering, take a few hours the night before and meal prep. This includes planning an easy menu with bite size snacks, easy salads and flavour packed protein options to keep your guests satisfied. While burgers and hot dogs are pretty standard fare for any barbecue, consider an elevated menu that can include flank steak, grilled veggies or plank salmon. You’ll also want to make sure to assign anyone who likes to be behind the grill as your designated griller. And don’t forget to make sure the barbecue has plenty of propane!

Depending on your guests, you can either have a cooler full of pop and water bevvies or, if it is a more adult affair, add a little alcohol to the mix! Boozy lemonades or spiked ice teas are pretty easy to make and very fun to drink. Craft beer and ciders are other fun options to add that different taste. Chilled white wine is also another fan favourite on a hot day!

If you’re planning an all-day affair, you might want to keep some quick and easy desserts or snacks on hand for the evening. Homemade ice cream bars, fruit kabobs or a veggie platter, or even a couple bags of kettle chips can make great options for any peckish guests. And as the sun sets, you can break out the marshmallows and get your S’mores on in front of the fire!


Any party-goer can tell you that ambience matters. For those suburban hosts, it seems obvious that your backyard party would include, well, a backyard. Likely with a sitting area, maybe umbrellas to offer some shady spots and some water fun! But, if you find yourself in smaller city digs, that doesn’t mean your party still can’t be one for the ages. If you’re in a townhome with a small green space or a deck, you just need to make the inside and outside flow. So keep your doors open and use all the space possible.

Don’t forget about décor! While it doesn’t have to cost much, a little effort can go a long way to turning your space into a dream zone. Throw pillows, paper patio lanterns and plastic glassware are all available at your local big box stores for cheap. While music can set the ambiance, you need to know your guests. It’s not easy to pick a playlist that will appease all ears, but streaming services like Spotify and Apple iTunes have plenty of mixed playlists that should do the trick.


Once your guests have eaten their fill, you’ll still need to keep them entertained. Backyard games such as a bocce ball set, Frisbee and even a football can keep the fun and competition going for hours! If you’re looking for a more chill hang, consider setting up a card table or some board games for those who want to partake.


Depending on the temperature and time of day for your party, you might want to remind guests to bring sunscreen, hats and/or bug spray to make sure their visit is as comfortable as possible!


A backyard party is generally quite different when little ones are involved. To ensure you are able to keep everyone happy – big and small – there are a few things to keep in mind!

If your party involves kids, you’ll want to keep the food simple and easy to eat with hands, so burgers, hot dogs, chips and some watermelon are the way to go. You’ll also want to keep the kids occupied, which could include simple games or more active options (once they’ve digested their food) such as a soccer ball, mini trampoline or even a sprinkler hose to run through and keep them cool. You’ll definitely want to keep on hand as much plastic dishware as possible because accidents and spills are bound to happen!

When daylight starts to fade, you can set up a backyard movie or camp-out with some tents to settle the night down. It never hurts to tire the young ones out so the grownups can have some chill time for themselves! Most of all, have some fun! These are the kinds of nights that create lasting memories.

Published by the DLC Marketing Team!

29 Jun

Are You Ready for Home Ownership?.


Posted by: Tyler Cowle

While most people know the main things they need to buy a home, such as stable employment and enough money for a down payment, there are a few other factors that may help you realize you’re ready – perhaps even earlier than you thought! In fact, there are four main things that can help you determine if you are ready for home ownership:


It is easy for potential homeowners to get wrapped up in focusing on having enough money for the down payment and then forget about afterwards. It is important that you are not only financially able to afford the down payment, but that you can manage the monthly mortgage payments and ongoing maintenance as well. My Mortgage Toolbox app from Dominion Lending Centres has some great calculators to help you determine what you can afford on a monthly basis before you get in too deep. If you have enough funds in the bank for a down payment and are able to manage the monthly costs associated with the size and price range of home you would need, then you may be ready to start house-hunting!   Click here to download Tyler’s App


As most people know, credit score plays a major role in qualifying for financing to purchase a home. If you have a good credit score, which should now be at least 680 to qualify, then you have nothing to worry about! However, if your credit score is below this, it is more likely that you will be paying higher interest rates (and therefore have higher payments), or that you could be denied all-together. Before you begin your home buying journey, it is vital to have your credit score in order to ensure you can get the best mortgage product and rates. Working with a mortgage professional can help you get on the right track in the shortest time possible. Sometimes all that’s needed are a few subtle changes, or debt consolidation, to improve your credit score within a couple months.


Do you plan on buying two new vehicles in the next two years? Are you thinking of starting a family? Are you considering going back to school? Although you may think you can afford to purchase a home right now, it is vital to be honest about your future plans. What does your life look like in 1 year? 5 years? 10 years? If you know that you aren’t planning on incurring big expenses that you need to factor into your budget anytime soon, then that’s something that may help you decide to buy a home.


One of the most important factors for purchasing a home is budgeting. You have to know what you can afford – and stick with it! It is easy to be tempted by a gorgeous 6 bedroom home or a backyard pool or private community, but at what cost? If going all-in is going to leave you scrambling each paycheck or derail any plans of future financial stability, it is worth rethinking. Understanding what you NEED in a new home, versus what you WANT, is a good step towards determining what you’re looking for and planning a budget that suits your needs so that you can continue to live comfortably.

These are just four signs that you may be ready to purchase a home. If you’re seriously considering buying or selling, talking with a Dominion Lending Centres mortgage professional can help ensure you have the best experience when it comes to buying a home!

Published by the DLC Marketing Team!

24 Jun

It’s All About The Property.


Posted by: Tyler Cowle

When your mortgage application goes through the approval process, they are not only looking at you, but also the property in question. In fact, sometimes when an application is denied it has nothing to do with you, and everything to do with the property.

To improve your chances of success when it comes to financing, there are three main things to consider:

  1. The type of property
  2. The location of the property
  3. The usage of the property

Let’s take a look at some of the specifics for each of these considerations.

Type of property

There are various types of properties when it comes to home ownership – detached houses, semi-detached, condos, townhouse, duplex, carriage or heritage home. Depending on the type of property you have chosen, there may be specific considerations.


When it comes to condo properties, the lender (and potentially the insurer) will consider the age of the building. In addition, they will look at maintenance history (or lack thereof), as well as the location for marketability. Some lenders may have stipulations that limit themselves to buildings with a certain number of units, or past a certain age.

If the condo you wish to buy is lacking a depreciation report, has a low contingency fund or large special levies pending, these will be red flags for the lender. Any of these situations will require a more thorough review. These items should also serve as strong considerations for you as it indicates the management (or lack of) for that condo building.


If you are looking at a property with additional units, it is important to consider that buildings with over four units, are considered a ‘commercial’ property and would be evaluated on that basis.


Whether registered or designated, heritage homes require a more detailed review and often come with special considerations for financing.


These properties also have specific requirements, particularly when it comes to the maximum loan-to-value which means they will require a larger down payment. These types of properties also typically call for additional documentation, and may have varying interest rates.

If you shift from a standard condo to a lease-hold property, your down payment amount will likely change. If you want to move to a small rural town or a small island, there will be fewer options. In addition, you may have to pay a higher rate as well as provide more documentation on the property.

All About The Property

Location considerations

You’ve heard it before – location, location, location! Location matters just as much to the potential homeowner as it does the lender. Some things to keep in mind when it comes to location include:


If the location limits the potential resale value for the building, lenders may not provide financial approval on that property. This is due to the increased risk if the borrower defaults. In that case, the lender may not be able to foreclose the property and get enough funds back due to the low resale. That said, some lenders may allow these properties but they might reduce the loan amount if the building is located outside of a major market area, or they may add a premium to the interest rate.


For properties with water access only, or with no access to municipal utilities (heat, water, electricity, sewage), there will be additional requirements to assess lender risk. These requirements might include: Insurance coverage, water testing, septic tank inspection, seasonal access and condition of the property.


It is also important to note that if you purchase a home in one Province and are transferred or move to a different province, some lenders won’t be able to port the mortgage due to being provincially based.

Usage considerations

The use of the property can include things such as personal, investment, recreational, agricultural and also consider previous activities. A few things to keep in mind are:


If you are looking at purchasing a condo on a property that has either a commercial component in the building (such as shops on the first floor), or allowable space in the unit for businesses (live/work designation), you may have limited lender options. In some cases, lenders will avoid these types of properties at all costs, while others may require approval from the insurer (i.e. CMHC).


If the property requires renovations, the extent of the upgrades, as well as the property value will be taken into consideration.


Homes that previously existed as grow-ops, have special lending options. These typically come with higher interest rates and costs due to decreased value.


For owner-occupied homes that contain rental suites, it is important to consider potential rental income. If the house is purchased for investment, rental income is automatically considered. This can result in a different interest rate than simply an owner-occupied dwelling. In these cases, the rental income can also increase the resale value of the property. However, an appraisal of the property must be conducted and reviewed to ensure the condition. This will also uncover whether any renovations were completed to add value.


Purchasing a second home for recreational use will require a review to determine if it is seasonal or year-round access.

Before you begin your home search, it is best to discuss your future plans with a Dominion Lending Centres Mortgage Professional. This will ensure you receive accurate information to understand the specific requirements your potential property might require. Seeking expert advice early on will also give you ample time to find the right fit! This will also ensure you can submit a full financing review before subject removal on a purchase.

Published by the DLC Marketing Team!