Mortgage Broker in Vancouver, BC

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Get expert help from a knowledgeable Vancouver mortgage broker. I’m partnered with a network of mortgage lenders including big banks, mortgage-only lenders, credit union and alternative financing options.

Mortgage Broker in Vancouver, BC

Step-by-Step Mortgage Approval

Get the Most Out of Your Vancouver Mortgage

How It Works

Hey, I’m Alan 👋

Since 2013 I’ve been a mortgage broker specializing in the Greater Vancouver area. I also personally invest in real estate and I’m a business owner. So no matter your situation, I understand exactly what you’re going through. I’ve helped others, and I can help you, too.

I work with people of all types, from first time buyers to experienced investors. It’s my job to help you safely navigate the world of real estate financing, no matter your experience level.

Frequently Asked Questions

That used to be a very simple to answer, but these days it depends on a lot of factors. Your income, debt, credit score, rental revenue, property tax amount, other properties you own. If your goal is to maximize your purchasing power, I can help you get a bigger mortgage than you can with a bank. Just one of the benefits of working with a mortgage broker.

Yes. I’m licensed to work with clients across British Columbia, and since the COVID pandemic I’ve been working with all of my clients via phone and email. Geographic restrictions don’t mean much these days! We can easily have our discovery call. then manage your approval process remotely.

Short answer: I suggest you check out CBC’s exposé on how bank employees are pressured to dupe customers to sell more. Keep in mind, bank reps are often good, hard working people like you and me. But ultimately they work for the bank, and the bank’s goal is to maximize shareholder profits. And they’re big enough to get away with it.

Your interests and my interests are very much in line with each other. I only earn my income when you get a mortgage (see below), and my business relies on referrals and repeat clients. I’ve been in this business for a long time, and I’ll continue to be a mortgage broker for many years. If you call my number in 5 years when your mortgage matures, I’ll still be the one that answers your questions.

The lender pays me a fee based on the size of the mortgage. But my commission doesn’t increase your interest rate, and in a lot of cases I can get you a lower interest rate and/or better lending terms. This is because the lender doesn’t need to pay marketing, office space or a salary.

5 year fixed rates closely follow the 5 year Government of Canada bond rates. Variable rates are largely affected by the Bank of Canada’s overnight lending rate, plus the cost and risk of arranging the mortgage. That’s why the 5 year variable rate increases when there’s economic uncertainty.

You should probably get a variable mortgage. But most people end up getting a fixed mortgage.

Why? Typically it comes down to a feeling of security. A lot of people feel very unsettled knowing their rate could change anytime. But you know what? On average you’ll save money, but it’s often worth it simply to avoid the higher penalties of the 5 year fixed rate.

For example, a week ago (at the time of writing) my brother in law asked me about breaking his mortgage to get a lower rate. The penalty is over $10,000 on a $250,000 mortgage. That’s 4% of the balance, which is staggering. If he had a variable mortgage, that penalty would have been a manageable $1,900.

I’ve personally seen penalties in excess of $50,000. It really depends on the size of your mortgage, the lender and how they calculate the penalty.

You might be thinking to yourself that you’re not going to break your mortgage early. But statistically, most Canadians do make a change to their mortgage between year 3 and 4.

So is it worth the risk? You decide and let me know!

Absolutely. I can either help you switch lenders or negotiate a better rate with your existing lender, depending on your personal preferences. I suggest you ask your bank their best rate before doing comparison shopping. You can’t compare what you don’t know.

The call will be kept ‘high level’ so you only need approximate numbers. When you send me your documents I’ll verify the numbers anyway. Here’s the outline I usually follow for calls:

  • Your goals and timeline
  • Pre-tax income
  • Liabilities (i.e., existing debt)
  • Credit history
  • If purchase – down payment, the property you want to buy
  • If refinance – the property you own, market value of the property
  • Other properties you own

Not at all – here’s what you can expect. On the first call we’ll have a high level discussion about your finances and goals and what you can expect if we work together. If it’s a good fit, I’ll send you a checklist of documents and information that I need for a more detailed approval.

Once my team reviews your documents I’ll call or email you with your mortgage options. If at that point you decide to move forward, I’ll ask you to sign a Letter of Engagement. It’s a non-binding agreement laying out the terms of our arrangement. By signing it you confirm you’re not working with any other mortgage professionals.

Interest rates generally come down to features and risk. If you want more prepayment benefits, a lower penalty, better portability, you might end up paying a slightly higher rate to get those features built into the contract.

Then there’s risk, and I could write a whole book on the topic. There are a lot of factors, but here are a couple examples:

Low Risk: Pretend a home buyer wants to get into the market with a 5% down payment. You might think that’s a high risk, but when putting down less than 20% a home buyer pays for CMHC insurance. CMHC (default) insurance protects the lender if the homeowner defaults on the loan. That means the risk is practically non-existent for the lender, so they can offer a very low interest rate.

Medium Risk: Imagine an enterprising homeowner wants to buy a house in a tourist town and rent it on AirBnb. If something were to happen that hurts the tourism industry (e.g., a pandemic), there’s a decent chance they’d stop making payments on the mortgage. So the rate would be a bit higher to reflect this chance.

High Risk: Let’s say a very motivated individual wants to build a home from the ground up. If the house is half built and the owner stopped making payments. The lender would have a very tough time selling the house and recovering the loan, so the rate should be higher.

Often, yes. I’ll ask you some questions, and in the majority of cases I can give you a ballpark rate estimate after about 15 minutes on the phone.