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House hunting? Here’s what to ask your mortgage broker before making an offer


After a cooling summer in the Canadian housing market, the coming fall could see some prospective homebuyers wondering whether now is the time to get pre-approved for a mortgage and take the plunge into homeownership.


But before making an offer on the house of your dreams, experts say you’re best to meet with a mortgage professional to understand what you can afford and what loan might be right for you.


Victor Tran, mortgage expert with rates.ca in Toronto, Ont., tells Global News that buyers who haven’t checked in with a professional to know exactly what’s possible for their financial situation could be surprised to find the home they thought was in their budget actually isn’t.


“I’d say the financing piece is the most important piece of the puzzle, and it should be the very first thing that any first-time homebuyer or any homebuyer, for that matter, should start doing,” he says.


As the Bank of Canada gears up for another interest rate decision on Sept. 7, here are some of the questions to ask before signing on the dotted line to avoid any shocks in your monthly payments.


What kind of mortgage professional am I working with?


The person who helps you find and negotiate an offer for the home of your dreams — your real estate agent — is not typically the same person who helps you get a mortgage.


But some of the terminology around mortgage professionals can be confusing, so know who you’re dealing with before you start the conversation.


A mortgage specialist is typically a professional employed directly by a bank or other specific lender. They’re able to sell mortgage products at that institution but won’t typically have access to mortgage rates and offers outside their lender, says Eitan Pinsky, owner of Pinsky Mortgages in Vancouver.


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