Trusted Tips and Resources

Trusted Tips & Resources

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.

HOW CAN I MAKE THINGS EASIER FOR 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.

EXAMPLES of DOCUMENTS YOU WILL NEED TO SHOW WHEN VERIFYING YOUR DOWN PAYMENT

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



Burnt Orange Solutions Trusted Saskatoon IT Expert Shares Basics Of Protecting Your Business

The Trusted team at Burnt Orange Solutions are located in the Computers & Web Design Category.

Honesty and respect are important factors in daily communication at Burnt Orange. Gareth and the team at Burnt Orange Solutions are YOUR Saskatoon IT stress solution. Burnt Orange Solutions are your Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts


BURNT ORANGE SOLUTIONS SASKATOON BASICS OF PROTECTING YOUR BUSINESS INFORMATION

Our Saskatoon IT Tips are from the Trusted professionals at Burnt Orange Solutions.  We promise to have a one-hour response time for all your Saskatoon IT support needs. Honesty and respect are important to us. In our latest  IT Expert tip Article, Gareth McKee, owner of Burnt Orange Solutions shares tips on protecting your business information.

 

The Basics of Protecting Your Business Information

  1. Network Gateway Firewall

The first point of defense to protect your network from hackers and bots trying to gain access to your network. Ensure you speak with a professional IT company to ensure it is configured correctly.

  1. Web protection

It is the easiest thing to click on a link not realizing it takes you to a very good fake website, this triggers the automatic download of a virus or ransomware. Web protection stops this happening by blocking known dangerous websites as well as legitimate websites which become infected.

  1. Antimalware at server/workstation/tablets/cell phones

Everyone knows you should have anti-malware/virus on your PCs and Servers, but not everyone understands that you should have this software on all your devices. And don’t for 1 second think that Apple products are safe, they also need antimalware, as do your tablets and cell phones.

One more point on this, do not use free antimalware tools, they are free for a reason i.e. they are about as much use as a chocolate fire guard.

  1. Anti-malware/spam at the email server

Specific email server antimalware and antispam software much be installed and configured correctly. This helps protect your staff from emails with dangerous links, virus payloads and generally makes them more efficient as their inbox will not be bombarded with 1,000s of annoying emails.

  1. Secure WIFI

Protecting Your Business Information wifi secureWIFI must be secured using the latest encryption WPA2 and protected with a strong password or RADIUS security tools.

Other tools which may be used to improve the security of WIFI networks include hiding the network, this way only computers which have been previously logged on to the network with be able to connect. You can also configure the WIFI network to only allow specific computers to connect.

One tactic which many businesses don’t do, but is a must, separate the WIFI networks, one for staff and one for guests. Only allow guests access to the internet and not on the business network, your laptops may be fully secured, but you don’t know the security standard of guests, they may very easily bring a virus in to your network.

  1. Encryption

Consider full encryption of all your computers, in particular laptops. By design laptops are for travel, unfortunately, this allows the theft of them to be much easier than a server in a locked down building.

Encryption would ‘scramble’ all the data on the hard drive and the only way to decrypt the data is by having a user login and password. Even if the hard drive is removed from the laptop the data cannot be accessed.

  1. Local and cloud image-based backups

A good backup solution is like insurance, you never need it until you NEED IT.

Don’t mess around with USB sticks which sit in a drawer. All businesses can afford and should use a business class backup service which provides:

  • Image based backups – allows for quick recovery of whole systems
  • Local backup – allows for quick recovery of files
  • Cloud backup – allows for recovery of data even in the event of a total loss at the business location
  • Encryption – stops hackers and thieves getting at your data.

 

  1. User training

Staff members must be trained to use the software correctly, also to recognize dangerous phishing emails or other attempts at gaining access to your network.

  1. Acceptable Use Policy

securing a lost laptopBe sure to have an Acceptable Us Policy for your computers and networks. This plainly shows the staff members what they can and cannot do on the computers:

  • Are they allowed to use social media?
  • Are they allowed to install software?
  • Are they allowed to shop online?

 

  1. Patch management

Patch management is a must for all devices on a network. New security holes are discovered every day on PCs, servers, switches, routers, firewall, WIFI access points, printers, scanners etc. all these devices can provide access to your network, ensure all patches and upgrades to all software and hardware are installed when they become available.

  1. Proactive maintenance

We all know the value of maintaining our cars, yet very few people maintain their computers. From blowing out the insides of a computer to get rid of all the dust to hard drive checks which will save you hours if not days in the event of a hard drive failure.

The best solution here is to outsource the proactive testing and reporting to an IT support company, they will have the tools, the trained staff and the reporting to do this properly.

  1. Firewall at server/workstation

Each device needs a firewall to improve its safe on the network. Often when a virus finds its way in to a network it will try to replicate itself across all the devices, a firewall on the PCs and servers helps prevent this.

  1. File and folder security permissions

To prevent leakage of information from your business it is paramount that security rules are in place to prevent a staff member from gaining access to information they should not have. Whether malicious or not, this can cause at best an HR headache at worst business secrets could find their way to your competitors.

  1. Users should not have administration rights

Staff members should not have administration rights to their local computer, it helps prevent the installation of unknown software and the spreading of viruses.

  1. Passwords

We now speak about passPHRASES rather than passwords as you can have spaces in the string of characters. A good passphrase should have at least 14 characters and be changed at a minimum quarterly.

  1. Do not allow the use of Dropbox etc.

Unless authorized by the management of a company, Dropbox and the like should not be allowed. A helpful staff member today who uses Dropbox to work at home may leave the company next week and have a lot of business information on their home computer.

Also, Dropbox can aid the spread of viruses and ransomware.

On a side note, do not use Dropbox as a backup solution, if a file on your PC becomes corrupt, the copy in Dropbox will also become corrupt. It is not designed as a backup solution.




Contact Burnt Orange today for more information or to take advantage of your FREE initial consultation. View them on Facebook here. They are your Burnt Orange Solutions are Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts!

Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts Burnt Orange Solutions Top 5 Ways IT Adds Value To Businesses

The Trusted team at Burnt Orange Solutions are located in the Computers & Web Design Category.

Honesty and respect are important factors in daily communication at Burnt Orange. Gareth and the team at Burnt Orange Solutions are YOUR Saskatoon IT stress solution. Burnt Orange Solutions are your Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts


IT Adds Value To Businesses

Of all the reasons that a business doesn’t leverage IT, the one that makes the least sense to me has to do with their size. There seems to be a reluctance to adopt more than what – for whatever reason – is “enough” for a business of their size and or capacity.

There is definitely a disconnect here that needs addressing. We know that more technology solutions, designed to make a company’s tasks easier, are not going to make these tasks harder. If anything, adding the right technology will help to increase the business’ capacity and profitability.  Maybe it’s because the employees of a business are afraid that their jobs will be at risk if a machine can do them – and they’ve never considered that someone still has to tell the machines what to do.

Regardless of the reason, it is important that anyone in charge of making decisions for a business understands the true benefits that modern IT solutions can deliver to all parts of their operations.

For instance:

IT Benefit 1. Money Management

Let’s face it, without money coming in, no business can operate for long. So the ability to properly manage incoming and outgoing cash flow is pretty crucial. A simple spreadsheet can be used to accomplish this, but that requires many hours to be invested to keep this document updated.

On the other hand, the right IT solutions can eliminate a considerable portion of this requirement. This allows you to save time, reviewing your finances and looking at future growth, instead of constantly micro-managing them.

 

IT Benefit 2. Team Work & Collaboration

One of the problems with most ‘tried-and-true’ business solutions, like paper files in a cabinet, is the fact that they make teamwork more difficult. With paper files, people need to be involved and often gathered in the same room. This makes life difficult and risks papers getting mixed up or lost, and perhaps crucial insights that won’t make it out of meetings.

However, there are IT solutions, like cloud computing, that not only keep these kinds of documents secure, they also allow your team members to easily work together on a document, wherever they happen to be. As a result, all insight and progress are saved in one place, accessible to any who needs to work on it as a team.

 

IT adds value to businessesIT Benefit 3. Efficiency

Businesses have a huge amount of work to attend to, regardless of their size. Anything that can help that work be done faster should be a welcome addition. Whether that speed comes from analyzing how time is being spent and optimizing it, managing tasks through digital tools to ensure that all responsibilities are filled, or any other way, should be motivation enough to adopt the solutions that enable these benefits.

 

IT Benefit 4. Mobile Work and Telecommuting

Remember how technology solutions were able to enable collaboration, wherever a user happened to be? This is due to the mobility that many solutions can provide. Smartphones are more and more able to communicate with those devices, making it possible to work from effectively anywhere.

Other solutions can allow an employee to work from home, offering some additional productivity benefits and perks for employees.

IT Benefit 5. Customer Service

Finally, the right technology solution can assist your business with its all-important customer service needs. You could apply a method to assist customers in need of support automatically, saving time, as an employee can step in with a clearer idea of the situation – assuming the employee needs to interrupt what they were doing at all. If you run an appointment-based business, you can put the ability to schedule a time in your client/customer’s hands if you want, establishing availability and automatically having it update as it changes.

Of course, this is but a brief sampling of what the right solutions can do if properly leveraged. Make sure you read some of our other blogs and service descriptions to learn more about what we do.




Contact Burnt Orange today for more information or to take advantage of your FREE initial consultation. View them on Facebook here. They are your Burnt Orange Solutions are Trusted Saskatoon IT Experts!

Trusted Saskatoon Autobody experts at Superior Auto Body Share Driving Tip On Seatbelts

Superior Auto Body has been in business since 1961, and SGI accredited since 1982... There are many reasons they have so many loyal longstanding clients from all over the city, but mostly it is the small, personal touches that they offer to people who have been unfortunate enough to require their services. They offer newer model courtesy cars and vans for their clients.. and to help out they will actually pick up your vehicle and take it to your SGI appointment for you and deliver the courtesy car to you at home... Superior take pride in their workmanship... as they always say, "When we get through it's just like new".


Superior Auto Body is a TRUSTED SASKATOON AUTO BODY shop…you will not regret choosing them!

Superior Auto Body Shares A Driving Tip On Seatbelts And Child Restraints

Superior Auto Body Saskatoon has been in business since 1961, and we have been an SGI ELITE Autobody shop and have been SGI accredited since 1982. There are many reasons we have so many loyal longstanding clients from all over the city, but mostly it is the small, personal touches that we offer to people who have been unfortunate enough to require our services. We offer newer model courtesy cars and vans for our clients..and to help out we will also pick up your vehicle and take it to your SGI appointment for you and deliver the courtesy car to you at home. In our latest blog post, we discuss …In our latest accident prevention tips, we share a driving tip about Seatbelts and Child Restraints

 

DRIVING TIPS SEATBELTS AND CHILD RESTRAINTS

SEATBELTS

A safe passenger compartment is an important part of vehicle design. The front and rear of a car are designed to collapse on impact while the passenger compartment remains undisturbed. Your chances of survival are, therefore, greatly increased if you remain in the passenger compartment.

Your seatbelt will keep you in your seat and will reduce the forces your body experiences in a crash.

In Saskatchewan, every vehicle occupant must wear a seatbelt where they are provided in a properly adjusted and securely fastened manner. Obey the law and increase your chances of surviving a collision. Put on your seatbelt every time you ride in a vehicle. To be most effective, seatbelts must be used properly. First, put the lap belt on, adjusting it to fit over your pelvis, and pull it snug. The lap belt is designed to take the force on your pelvis – not your stomach. Keep the lap portion low.

Next, adjust the shoulder portion of the seatbelt over your chest area. How you do this will vary from vehicle to vehicle. Some adjust automatically, others work as a window blind. Adjust your shoulder belt to make it snug, yet comfortable.

Shoulder belts should never be worn behind your back or under your arm. Drivers are legally responsible to ensure that passengers under 16 years of age use seatbelts where available and child safety seats, when appropriate. If not, the driver may be charged. Passengers aged 16 years and older are responsible for buckling themselves up.

Seatbelts


CHILD RESTRAINTS

In collisions, children can acquire severe injuries by being thrown about or completely out of the passenger compartment. This can happen more easily than with adults because they have heavy heads in relation to the rest of their bodies. Their necks and bodies are not strong enough to withstand the impact of a collision or sudden braking.

 

In Saskatchewan, small children must be properly fitted into approved child restraints that are correctly installed. Children who weigh less than 18 kg (40 lb.) must be buckled into proper child safety restraints that are fastened to the vehicle by a seatbelt and any other straps specified by the manufacturer no matter who is transporting them – parent, grandparent, caregiver.

Children under seven years of age, weigh less than 36 kg (80 lb.), and are less than 145 cm (4’9″) must be properly fitted into an approved booster seat, used according to manufacturers’ instructions.

Driving Tips seatbelts and child restraints

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON CHILD RESTRAINTS, CONTACT SGI TRAFFIC SAFETY PROMOTION AT 306-775-6042 OR 1-844-TLK-2SGI (1-844-855-2744) OR EMAIL TRAFFICSAFETY@SGI.SK.CA


Suncatcher Solar and Electric Trusted Saskatoon Electricians Share Information About Electric Vehicles

A family company based in Saskatoon Suncatcher Solar Systems has been supplying and installing solar energy systems since 2003; they are Saskatoon's most established solar provider. Their Solar and electrical team designs, supplies and installs solar power systems and designs passive solar homes, they shared this article about electric vehicles as a viable option with our Saskatchewan winters.

Suncatcher Solar & Electric Your Trusted Saskatoon Electricians and Solar Experts.


Are electric vehicles a viable option with Saskatchewan winters?


Suncatcher install electric vehicle chargers and solar power systems to charge electric vehicles - an increasingly popular option!

Contact them today for a quote!


Electric vehicle owners Pat Keyser and Jason Cruickshank dispel some of the popular myths in this article. With the numerous financial and environmental benefits of driving an electric vehicle (EV) becoming increasingly apparent, more people are opting to make the switch — but some consumers are still worried about how cold temperatures affect the vehicles' performance.



THE BATTERY IS UNRELIABLE


As with a vehicle with an internal combustion engine (ICE), it does take more energy to run an EV in the colder months, although Keyser noted that the battery powering her Tesla Model S is much more reliable in winter than the battery needed to start an ICE vehicle.

Cruickshank added that the engine in his Chevrolet Bolt kicks in automatically to keep the battery warm. Another plus is the fact that the 12-volt starter battery will never die because it's constantly being charged — whether plugged in or not, he said.

“A lot of people compare these batteries to their cellphones. But those batteries are designed for different operating conditions — it's not designed for cooler temperatures; there is nothing in there to try to keep the battery warm or conditioned."


COLD REDUCES THE EV'S RANGE

Keyser admits her Model S doesn't make it quite as far in the winter months as it does in the summer — about 25 percent less, according to her observations — but ICE vehicles also consume more fuel when idling or powering heaters and other electronics. For her, it's simply a matter of shifting her thinking to how she can drive to better extend the battery's range.

When she has used her car on a long road trip, the charging stops gave her a chance to discover different communities where she would never have stopped otherwise, she added.


CHARGING INFRASTRUCTURE IS LACKING

While there is some truth to this, Keyser said it's simply a downfall of being a pioneer of the continuously growing industry. Both Keyser and Cruickshank admit Saskatchewan is significantly behind the rest of Canada in this aspect.

“When motorized vehicles first came along, there weren't gas stations everywhere," Keyser noted.

Most EV owners don't use public charging stations for full charges, opting instead to plug into a regular wall outlet overnight or at work, Cruickshank said. As long as they aren't on a long trip, finding a public charger isn't required unless they want to top up their battery while out and about.  


CHARGING TAKES TOO LONG

When it's cold, no one wants to have to stop for hours to recharge a vehicle — But unless you are travelling a long distance, you generally don't tend to completely drain the battery.

Cruickshank said it can take about eight hours to fully charge his Bolt using a standard plug — fine for an overnight charge, but he admits it's not ideal when travelling long distances.

However, the technology is advancing quickly and more quick charge stations are popping up that can take a battery from zero to 80 percent in less than 45 minutes.


EV IS SIMILAR IN EFFICIENCY TO AN ICE VEHICLE

Even in Saskatchewan, where the majority of electricity comes from burning coal, EVs are about twice as efficient compared to their gas-burning counterparts.

Plugndrive.ca estimates every 20,000 kilometres Keyser drives her Model S in Saskatchewan costs roughly $570 and outputs 2,495 kg of carbon dioxide. Those numbers jump significantly, to $2,490 and 4,880 kg of carbon dioxide, when calculated for an ICE vehicle. 

Cruickshank's Bolt performs even better, costing only $490 and outputting only 2,160 kg of carbon dioxide. 

In provinces like Quebec and Manitoba, where electricity is mainly created at hydroelectric generating stations, the amount of carbon dioxide emitted drops to roughly 30 to40 kg for every 20,000 kilometres driven.

Suncatcher Solar and electric are your TRUSTED SASKATOON SOLAR AND ELECTRICAL EXPERTS!

Original Artcicle - Star Phoenix https://thestarphoenix.com/news/local-news/five-misconceptions-about-driving-an-electric-car-in-winter

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