Trusted Tips and Resources

Trusted Tips & Resources

Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage Broker Asks, Is Your Mortgage Coming Up for Renewal?

Is Your Mortgage Coming Up for Renewal?

Did you know… Over the next 1-2 years, half of all Canadian mortgages will be up for renewal?

If you’re unsure about your renewal date, now’s the perfect time to find out. But, whatever you do, be sure to have an experienced mortgage broker negotiate on your mortgage at renewal with multiple lenders – including banks, credit unions, and trust companies – to ensure you secure the best mortgage product and rate based on your specific needs.

Brokers can pull one credit report and shop your deal with numerous lenders. If you try to do this yourself, each lender will pull a report, which will negatively impact your credit score and could prevent you from qualifying for the best possible mortgage.

Too many people simply sign the renewal form sent by their bank/lender up to six months prior to the renewal date without shopping their options. In fact, this is one of the biggest mistakes a homeowner can make.

Accepting this offer most often means you’ll be paying way too much for your mortgage – on average, 1-1.5% higher than you should be paying – and/or your new mortgage won’t adapt to your changing needs as a borrower. It’s important to remember that lenders are in the business of making money, so they won’t often offer the best rate in the renewal letter.

On a $300,000 mortgage, this higher interest rate could translate into a difference of more than $250.00 per month… and over five years you would have paid $15,000+ in additional interest! That’s a lot of money that could have been paid towards the principal balance and helped pay down your mortgage faster.

Mortgage renewal is also the perfect time to take out equity in your home to renovate, pay down debt, send a child to school, take a dream vacation or use however you choose. The benefit of taking money out during renewal is you don’t have to pay any fees to break your mortgage early.

And if your mortgage isn’t up for renewal just yet, it may also be beneficial to have a mortgage broker conduct a free annual mortgage checkup to ensure your mortgage is working for you and keeping more of your hard-earned money in your bank account each month. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain from staying on top of both your short- and long-term mortgage needs.

Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage Broker: Tammy Wandzura – Your downpayment and what you NEED to know

Purchasing your home is one of the biggest and most important decisions that you can make. Tammy Wandzura your Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage broker and the team at Elite Mortgage Choice believe that buying a home should also be an exciting experience with little to NO stress. By trusting your Mortgage Broker, you are ensuring that any stress you may have had in previous encounters can be eliminated! 

Saskatoon Mortgage Broker: Tammy Wandzura – Your downpayment and what you NEED to know

Downpayment for a new home: Seems like a pretty easy thing to understand. NO?

If you wish to purchase a home you need a downpayment. YES.

In most cases the minimum downpayment is 5% of the purchase price.

Proof of DOWNPAYMENT is one of the trickiest things for most people (first time home buyers OR repeat buyers) to understand.

Years ago a home purchase consisted of a verbal agreement and a handshake. Gone are the good ol’ days.  
  Today: due to money laundering and fraud minimum banking standards and policy requires every consumer (regardless of their income level, credit score or net worth) to provide the lender confirmation of funds being used for a downpayment in a very specific format.

Your lender will be verifying your down payment prior to full approval.  It’s required by all lenders to protect against fraud.

The lenders also are required to prove that you are not borrowing your down payment. Borrowing your downpayment can change your lending ratios and your ability to repay your mortgage.

There are no gray areas with proof of downpayment rules. There are no exceptions to the rules relating to proof of downpayment.

Every single consumer that wants to borrow money for a home (from any lender) needs to be able to viably prove downpayment.
EVEN IF: you are purchasing a $500,000 home and putting down $475,000 and only need a $25,000 mortgage – the rules still apply to you.


 Follow our guidance and advice.  We are here as your Mortgage Expert to help you through what some of my clients have called a “minefield” of mortgage rules. By following our advice the entire pre-approval to possession date process is quite simple, efficient and speedy.

Get PRE-approved.

This simple step will allow us to gather and review your important and unique details UP FRONT-BEFORE you go house hunting and have very limited time restrictions to meet for your final approval.

Let us ask the hard questions up front.

If you are applying for a mortgage be prepared for full disclosure relating to all of your finances. Lenders will not even consider reviewing an application if something is left out or not clearly outlined.
We ask ALL of the hard questions up front so we can package the information in a way we know the lenders will accept it or consider it.
 If your downpayment source is questionable (cash from tips, cash from the sale of a vehicle, a gift from a family member, ETC)- run it past us so that we can provide tips on what the bank will need to see when you proceed with an offer on a home.  We are not the bank. We are here to provide you with the information you need to make educated decisions on what the bank WILL need to see so you can properly prepare yourself.
WHY do we ask the hard questions up front? To avoid delays for you when you need the final mortgage approval. To avoid disappointment and lost opportunities on homes you may want to purchase because the appropriate information and paperwork are not organized for the lender to review.

Send us your paperwork immediately.

We prefer to review ALL of your paperwork up front BEFORE you start house hunting with your Realtor.
We will provide you a detailed list of every document we need to review. Send this to us immediately.
This allows us time to review and ensure that the paperwork we have on file is exactly in line with what the lender will need when we request your final approval.
If we are missing something we will ask for MORE.
The more we ask for- simply means we are better preparing your file to get a speedy approval at the very best rates with the very best lenders.
The less information we have upfront will mean more information you have to provide to us last minute. This always creates un-needed stress for you throughout the home-buying experience.

Remember we are working for YOU. 

Not only are we Provincially legislated to work in the “consumers best interest” by the “FCAA” (Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority) BUT we just generally want to make the entire home buying experience seamless, stress-free and easy for you from PRE-APPROVAL to POSSESSION date.
We are not asking for paperwork that we will not need and we are not asking for anything to make things more difficult.
The more prepared YOU ARE – the faster the final approval process will happen for you.

Not every Mortgage is created equal.

Although you may be receiving advice and guidance from many sources (Online, Mom, Dad, Grandparents, friends, neighbours and colleagues) please know that every single person’s finances, employment situation, debt load, other financial obligations, credit score etc are vastly different and unique.
The differences in each mortgage request will mean different requirements for different people.
Mortgage rules have changed immensely and aggressively in the past 10 years and the approval process may be different for you than it was for your friend.

Saving for a down payment is often one of the biggest challenges.

The source of your down payment could come from your own savings, a gift from a family member, your RRSP if you’re a first time home buyer or from the proceeds of selling your current home.


1. Savings/Investments: If you’ve saved enough money for your down payment your lender will want to see a CURRENT 3-month history (90-day transaction history) of any account you plan on using for your down-payment. (Savings/TFSA/RRSP/etc)

Your statement will need to clearly show your name and your account number.  Any large deposits will need to be verified. Example: You sold a dirt bike and deposited $6000 into your savings account.  A few days later you transferred it to your TFSA. In these examples, you will have to provide a 90 days statement from your savings account and your TFSA.   Any transfers between accounts from one account to another will need to show a record of the money leaving one account and arriving in the other.  The lenders want to see a paper trail of where the money came from and how it got in your account.

A screenshot of a quarterly statement from last Summer just won’t do it.

2. Gifted Down Payment:  Mom and Dad (or ANY IMMEDIATE family member) can assist you with your downpayment. You will need a signed gift letter from your family member that states the down-payment is indeed a gift and no repayment is required on the funds.

The lender will also require that we show the funds have been deposited into your account no later than 15 days prior to closing.

3. Using your RRSP:  If you’re a First Time Home Buyer, you may qualify to use your Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) for your down payment.

Verifying your down payment from your RRSP is just like verifying from your savings/investment accounts.  You will need to show a 3-month history via your account statements with your name and account number on them.  Funds must have been in your account for 90 days.

4. Proceeds From Selling Your Existing Home:  If your down payment is coming from the proceeds of selling your current home you will need to show your lender a fully executed purchase and sale agreement between you and the buyer of your home.  If you have an outstanding mortgage on the property, you will also have to provide an up-to-date mortgage statement.

5. Money From Outside Of Canada:  Using funds from outside of Canada is acceptable.  The country of origin will determine the type of documents required by the lender. In some cases – some lenders require the funds are in Canada for a minimum of 30-90 days.  In these situations, it is good to review your options and timeline restrictions before starting the house hunting process.

Verifying your down payment will always require you to show documentation of where the money originated from. All large deposits need explanations and/or paper trails.

Want to make things easy?  Preparing to become a homeowner?

Use ONE bank account to save your downpayment. Avoid multiple transfers among multiple accounts. (Remember we need a 90-day transaction statement for each account that your money has moved in and out of). If you have been gifted funds from Mom, Dad, Brother, Sister etc, advise them they may need to sign a Gift letter.  If you have sold ANYTHING gets a bill of sale and deposit that amount of money directly into your bank account so that the bill of sale and the deposit match up exactly.  Been saving your TIPS? Or Birthday Money for years? GET THAT money deposited asap. It has to be in your account for 90 days before it can be used without a paper trail to authenticate the funds as per the rules above.

We can review your information now to prepare you for the future.

Thank you for taking the time to read and educate yourself on what steps you may need to take to consider homeownership.

I am here to work with you every step of the way!

Apply ONLINE or call me at 306.933.3386

Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage Broker Tammy Wandzura Explains Why Referrals are So Important

Purchasing your home is one of the biggest and most important decisions that you can make. Tammy Wandzura your Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage broker and the team at Elite Mortgage Choice  believe that buying a home should also be an exciting experience with little to NO stress. By trusting your Mortgage Broker, you are ensuring that any stress you may have had in previous encounters can be eliminated! Tammy truly believes that all you should have to worry about is opening the door to your new home for the very first time.

Tammy Wandzura Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage Broker Explains WHY Referrals Mean So Much!

"I would like to extend a HUGE shout out and THANK YOU to each and every current client, previous client, friend and family member that has ever referred to my services. I have been in the Mortgage and lending industry since 2002 and I have been so fortunate to assist so many people in making their dreams come true!"

Home Ownership is an Amazing Achievement and a HUGE Commitment

"I have had the opportunity to help thousands of first time home buyers make the BEST decisions and continue to assist with renewals and refinances."

Why are Referrals So Important?

"People love referrals. They love knowing that by making that first call they will be taken care of from beginning to end. With all of the new Mortgage rulesthe average person needs to feel comfortable and know they are dealing with an expert. We work diligently to create a true customer service experience with every single client we work with. We are not just about the lowest rate. Much like your Insurance Advisor or Financial Advisor;  I am your Mortgage Advisor. My job is not complete when the “transaction” is complete. I am here to continue reviewing your details regularly to ensure that I am helping you meet your future financial goals. In today’s day and age – good customer service can be hard to come by. Amazing and great customer service is far and few between. We want each client to feel that we have taken care of all of their mortgage needs today and in the future."

You can continue to give online reviews here, they are greatly appreciated!  

Call Tammy Wandzura today at 306 933.3386 for all of your Saskatoon mortgage needs OR visit

Make an appointment with Tammy Wandzura at TMG, #1-511 1st Ave N or check out her listing on the Saskatoon directory of excellent in the SASKATOON MORTGAGES Category..she is a Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage Broker Expert! 

Your Mortgage Now Saskatoon Mortgage Experts Speak Up About Mortgage Renewals

Buying a home is one of the most important and exciting steps in your life... now that pesky financing! Deal with people who can offer you and your family the best options for you with Your Mortgage Now! Devin Cristo and Wes Will are your Saskatoon Mortgage Experts and they have years of experience helping individuals and families finance their dreams by offering mortgages from a variety of lenders for people from all walks of life.

Your Mortgage Now - Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage Experts!

Do You Have a Mortgage Renewal Coming Up?

When it comes time to mortgage renewals, the smartest thing that you can do is get help from a Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage Broker who has access to over 20 lenders that want your business! The experienced  Saskatoon mortgage team at Your Mortgage Now can also guarantee you a rate for 120 days in advance of your renewal date. Think about the thousands of dollars that this will save you in interest costs alone! There can be fees associated with transferring your mortgage to get a better interest rate, but sometimes the new lender will cover the costs just to obtain your business!

Do you think it's smarter to renew your mortgage with a bank?

The YourMortgageNow team urges you to read our articles on the Bank Vs Mortgage Broker debate, then ask yourself the following:


•    Why won’t my bank provide me with a 120 day, low rate guarantee?

•    Why isn’t my bank giving me the best deal possible?

•    Why is my bank sending me a renewal notice and not sitting down to talk to me


It just makes sense to have someone shop around for your best interest rate, you can TRUST them to do it for you, and you have nothing to lose!

APPLY ONLINE NOW or contact them today, it won’t cost you a penny!

Your Mortgage Now - Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage Experts!

Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage Broker Tammy Wandzura Gives Tips About Down Payments

Purchasing your home is one of the biggest and most important decisions that you can make. Tammy Wandzura your Trusted Saskatoon Mortgage broker and the team at Elite Mortgage Choice believe that buying a home should also be an exciting experience with little to NO stress. By trusting your Mortgage Broker, you are ensuring that any stress you may have had in previous encounters can be eliminated! 

Tammy truly believes that all you should have to worry about is opening the door to your new home for the very first time.

Tammy Wandzura Tips on How to Save for a Down Payment

Wanting to start preparing for HOMEOWNERSHIP? Wanting to PURCHASE your FIRST HOME? With the right advice – you are closer than you think!

4 Major Things to Consider:

#1: Well Established Credit

It is more important than ever to have your best Credit score possible going into the mortgage pre-approval process. Your mortgage rate and your pre-approval limit will be based on what your credit score is and how strong your past credit history is. There are some fairly basic rules for building a strong credit report from scratch (or after issues with your credit).

  • Every lender and insurer prefers to see that you have TWO pieces of well-paid and well-maintained credit for TWO full years. *on exception, we can consider one year *but* ideally a strong 2-year history will give you the most flexibility.
  • Ideally, it is best if you have TWO credit cards that have been reporting to the credit bureau for TWO years.
    • NOTE: The lender is looking to see if the credit has been WELL PAID and WELL MANAGED



On credit cards or a Line of Credit if you hold ANY balance you are required to make a minimum payment every 30 days. There are no exceptions and double payments do not count.


Example: If you have a credit card with a limit of $5000 it is important that if you are holding a balance it is LESS than 50% of the limit (in this example $2500 or less). As soon as the balance starts creeping up to the limit (or over) it will drag your credit score down quickly. (This means that if you go to your favorite electronics store and make a big purchase on your credit card with intentions of paying it off within a short period of time…BUT the credit bureau company collects the information on your file in the meantime -and you are at your MAX- you could affect your ability to qualify for a mortgage.) DO NOT apply for too much credit.  Applying for credit regularly will damage your credit score and affect your ability to qualify for a mortgage. 

CHOOSE the credit cards you apply for carefully.  Some cards have hefty annual fees.  If you do not plan to use your card you may want to consider a NO FEE card OR you may want to research the best cards on the market for collecting points. (Many people use their card regularly to earn travel/cash back or reward points. This can be a very good way to earn “free” rewards but it is important you are savvy and pay off your balance every single month.)

#2: Down Payment

Minimum down payment to purchase an OWNER-OCCUPIED home in Canada is 5%. Example: Purchase Price $300,000.00 x 5% = $15,000.00 Down payment needed. You are also required to have money set aside for “closing costs” (legal fees). These costs vary from Province to Province and are based on the purchase price of the home. On an average, the cost is approximately $3000 or less. You may be asked by your lender to prove that you have more available as “back up”. Typically, acceptable proof of down payment would be proof of savings/investments/RRSPs OR a GIFT from a family member.

How to Save when you have month to month bills??

Every little bit helps and the lenders and insurers see strength in applicants that have worked to save all or a portion of their own down payment. Let’s call it having “skin in the game.” 


Throughout her life she has always calculated each of her purchases (big or small) against Minimum Wage. That is what she started making when she hit the workforce and many people still do. When she is considering a coffee – She decides if she wants to make a cup at home and take it with her (.33c) or stop at Tim Horton’s ($2.75) OR …Starbucks… ($5++) AT $5.00 that would be approximately (give or take) a HALF HOUR of work!  NOW- is that worth it (every day) Skip the Starbucks.

She has taught her kids this. When they were working part-time already they understood the “minimum wage” idea.  For example, they bring a can of bug spray to soccer ($10)- lend it out to a friend and proceed to “lose it”.  She gives them the example of ONE hour of work for that one can of bug spray…and somehow it magically appears next game. They made it a priority to find it because that one hour of work for a can of bug spray seemed outrageous (and) it is!!

Build the minimum wage mentality into your budget. 

If you are earning Minimum wage think closely on how long it would take you to earn the money you plan to spend.  If you earn more (or significantly more) it is still an amazing measuring stick to put yourself in check on day to day purchases. When she is buying groceries– It has taken her years to figure this out.  Make a meal plan. Make the grocery list and then stick to it.  Better yet- check out the online grocery services that Superstore has.  You can go through ONLINE and price check your volumes vs price/brand etc. You are not tempted to throw things in your cart that you do not need. At the end when you check out if your bill is larger than you expected you can go back and remove things you may not need. Netflix vs Cable- She has Cable (her husband is a Sport’s guy) but they watch Netflix 99% of the time. Going 100% Netflix does not have to be a forever plan.  It can be a right now plan to help you save towards your future goals.  Remember every little bit helps. 

#3: Income


Income, of course, is a MAJOR component in any mortgage approval. Some income and employment situations are very “black and white”. Others are UNIQUE. Ideally, they are looking for full time, guaranteed salary hourly employeesEvery single family may have unique things we need to consider when looking at employment. Maybe MRS. is on MAT LEAVE. Maybe MR gets paid by the mile.  Maybe one of the applicants is a Nurse but has a “casual” job status vs a “permanent” status.

THE KEY: Remember the lender(s) are looking for consistency. 

In the examples, she gave above:

  • Many lenders will consider “back to work income” to be used for anyone on a maternity or paternity leave.
  • Paid by the job or mile? Lenders need to see what your 2 year T4 average looks like to consider using any income.
  • Not a permanent employee BUT picking up full time (or more hours?) Still need that 2-year average to use your income.
  • Self-employed? The 2-year average of your Line 150 Taxable income to Revenue Canada.

Generally speaking, if you do not have a full time, permanent guaranteed hourly or salary position you have to fall back on averages. They are here to help you wade through the lender guidelines, review your income and help you prepare for mortgage approval. In some cases, they have some flexible solutions or suggestions with the situations we are reviewing.

Considering an employment change RIGHT before starting the house hunting process? Talk to her first. Your new employment opportunity MAY affect your ability to qualify for a mortgage. 

#4: Debt Load

There is not a topic that she is more passionate about talking about. DEBT LOAD is one of the biggest reasons most applicants are declined to qualify for a mortgage. One of the major pieces of the mortgage approval puzzle is your DEBT vs INCOME RATIOS.

The lender(s) and CMHC need to look at your current debt (car loans, credit card debt, student loan debt, boat loan debt etc.) + the new mortgage payment + the property taxes + a heat cost must be no higher than 40-44% of your overall Gross income. Most car payments will eat deeply into the average family’s monthly income. Did you know that if you have a Line of Credit that has (as an example) $15,000 owed on it- and your minimum payment is $100/month…they have to use $450/month (3% of the balance) to qualify your application???!???  (Government guideline every lender follows).  When you are running your own numbers and affordability- it may be drastically different than what the bank will accept. Work hard to keep your debt LOW. BUY the HOME and then the car.


Work in the Summers- bring that student loan debt down as much as you can while you are a student so that it does not affect your ability to “start your life” when you choose to. She works with clients every day that have made decisions in the PAST that is seriously impacting their ability to proceed with FUTURE PLANS. Thinking of going to school?  Consider this example below and be very cautious on “what” you are charging to your student loans. They can follow you for a long time if you do not put a good plan together from the beginning.


A young couple goes into the bank – banker is rude. Tells the young couple to come back when they are “making money”. The banker does not show them the numbers or explain things in detail.

Clients contact my office.

  • I go through the full application
  • MRS works at McDonald’s and is currently on Maternity leave. (overall annual income is fairly low)
  • MR works in retail. (overall annual income is fairly low)
  • They have one baby and one on the way.
  • I run their credit….
  • To find they have $131,000.00 in UNSECURED debt. (credit cards, lines of credit, student loans) and over $2390/month in minimum payments.

Moral of the story; these clients do not qualify to purchase a home and likely will not for many years. The issues with their scenario are how deep in debt they are. $84,300 in Student loan debt alone.

Want to make a plan to become a homeowner?  That is what she is here for.  Contact Tammy Wandzura anytime and she can review your current details, your future plans and tailor a plan to ensure you are on the right track!

Call Tammy Wandzura today at 306 933.3386 for all of your Saskatoon mortgage needs OR visit

Make an appointment with Tammy Wandzura at TMG, #1-511 1st Ave N or check out her listing on the SASKATOON DIRECTORY in the SASKATOON MORTGAGES Category. She is a Trusted SASKATOON MORTGAGE BROKER Expert!


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S & E Trusted Online Directories Inc
129 21st St E #500
Saskatoon, SK   S7K 0B2
Ph: 306.244.4150


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