Graham Ogden

B Comm and Realtor®

Direct: 1 780 908-1224 |

What About My Mortgage Pre-Approval

Although going through the pre-approval process is important, the actual term ‘pre-approval’ is often misunderstood.

 

An important point to be clear on is that while you may be pre-approved for a certain mortgage amount, there are several variables that can derail a final approval once you write an offer on a property. As such it is imperative that offers include a condition (or ‘subject’) clause along the lines of ‘subject to receiving and approving satisfactory financing’.

 

This is arguably the single most important clause in a contract (an inspection being a close second), because without the financing, how will you complete your purchase?

 

The pre-approval process should be considered more of a personal pre-screening process than anything. It should include a lender review of a current credit report and review of all required income and down payment documents. You should have a clear understanding of the maximum mortgage amount you qualify for along with clarity on the various related costs involved in your specific transaction.

 

With most lenders pre-approvals involve no formal live review of documents, but your Mortgage Broker can preview them to catch any significant areas of concern such as:

 

         Unfiled taxes

  • Unpaid taxes
  • Employment still in a probationary period
  • Clarity around down payment origins

Ultimately the property forms a significant part of a mortgage approval, and so until an offer is written on a specific property, no true approval can be offered.

 

Furthermore, government changes to lending guidelines and policies can render a pre-approval invalid just a few days later, without warning. Pre-Approvals are not always grandfathered when the lending rules change.

 

So yes, request a pre-approval, as it gives you a good idea as to your maximum mortgage amount and locks down a rate for you. Always a worthwhile endeavour. It may also allow you to address a few smaller issues with ample time prior to writing your offer. Small issues today can be big issues when in the middle of a live transaction.

 

Bottom line, please be aware that aside from these key advantages, a pre-approval is not a guarantee of mortgage financing.

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Today’s Bank of Canada rate hold announcement marks almost four straight years that the key benchmark rate has remained unchanged, since September 8, 2010. Great news if you have a variable-rate mortgage or home equity line of credit; the prime rate stays at 3%.

 

The announcement noted that “the risks to the outlook for inflation remain roughly balanced, while the risks associated with household imbalances have not diminished.” With these considerations, the Bank is maintaining its monetary policy stimulus, and remains neutral with respect to the timing and direction of the next change.

 

The next rate-setting day is October 22nd.

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Data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton.