Applying for a mortgage can be a relatively straightforward event.  There are a few “must-haves” when it comes to getting your deal approved.

What gets looked at when applying for a mortgage?

The two biggest factors being considered are credit and income.  To access the best products and rates, your FICO credit score should be above 680.  In addition to the score, you should have a history of managing your available credit.  Lenders look for 2-2-2; two forms of credit (i.e., credit cards, loans, etc.) that have been established for two years and have a minimum limit of $2,000.

The most ideal form of income to qualify is hourly or salary-based that is supported by CRA documents, most recent pay stubs, and a Letter of Employment.  Income that is not guaranteed (i.e., overtime, premiums, etc.) would require an average of a two-year history for a lender to consider the income.

There are various programs supporting individuals who are self-employed.  It is best to connect with a reputable Mortgage Broker to review your options as these deals can get a little tricky.

What should you not do before applying for a mortgage?

Under no circumstances, do not change/quit your job or apply for new credit – even if it is a “don’t pay a cent event.”  Please consult with your Mortgage Broker before you make any changes to your current situation.

How do you improve your chances of getting approved for a mortgage?

Here are a few ways to improve the chances of getting approved for a mortgage:

  • Pay down as much of your current debt as possible.
  • Save as much money as you can for the down payment and closing costs.
  • Make sure you know your credit score and payment history.
  • Work with a Mortgage Broker to get a pre-approval – make sure they do a full review of your income and credit situation as part of the pre-approval process.  This will greatly reduce the potential of something going wrong when you have a “live” deal (accepted purchase sale agreement).
  • Consider getting an immediate family member as a co-signer who is established (i.e., great income and credit and low debt if your overall borrowing profile needs improvement.

When planning to purchase or refinance, there are lots of online resources available.  Check out our great mortgage calculator to help you understand your potential maximum purchase price.  Please download our My Mortgage Planner app.  It has tons of useful information from land transfer tax estimators to online pre-approvals.  If you’d like help or more information please email us at or book a no-obligation consultation. 

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