8 Mar

Market Update – Grande Prairie and Surrounding Area


Posted by: Gert Martens

Most potential homeowners feel the best time to purchase a home is during the spring and summer months. This is due to the fact that experts on the Home Garden and Television network (HGTV) state that is when the peak season to buy a home is. However, this creates an influx in buyers since everyone is waiting until then to make their purchase and to apply for an Alberta mortgage. This means that mortgage rates have risen and there is an increase in competition for homes.

So, to avoid looking for homes in the spring and summer months, consider purchasing your home now, this winter. By working with a mortgage broker in Alberta, you will receive low rates on your home loan and can take your time viewing whichever homes you are interested in.

To help you get started in the home buying process, your local broker, Gert Martens with Dominion Lending Centres, has listed the most recent market update for Grande Prairie and Surrounding Areas.


Grande Prairie and Surrounding Areas

Market Update

In regards to Zolo.ca, Alberta has approximately 4.1 million inhabitants and this region spreads over 642 kilometers. Grande Prairie is among one of the more popular cities in this area and there are currently 759 different property types available for purchase.

In 2018, the Grande Prairie region had a strong year for residential sales. This is mainly due to the increase in production from the oil and gas companies. Experts are predicting another strong year for the area, which means housing prices are expected to increase. Therefore, if you are considering applying for an Alberta mortgage and would like to purchase a home in Grande Prairie, it would be in your best interest to do so now before the rates get even higher.

As for the surrounding areas, such as in Peace River, there are currently 145 different properties for sale and 100 of those properties are single, detached homes. Please reach out to your local Alberta mortgage broker for more details.


Contact Us

If you would like to receive more information on the market update for the Grande Prairie and surrounding areas, please contact Gert Martens with Dominion Lending Centres at 780-933-0109.

16 Nov

Benefits of a Second Mortgage


Posted by: Gert Martens

If you are currently a homeowner and have been making regular payments on your mortgage every month, you could have accumulated a substantial amount of equity in your home. Your home’s equity is the difference between what you owe on your mortgage and your home’s overall value, meaning that the more payments you make towards your mortgage, the more equity you could have in your home.

Having an increase in home equity opens up a lot of doors for homeowners that they might not have ever thought about. This includes obtaining a second mortgage. So, to help provide some clarity, Gert Martens, your local mortgage broker, has explained what a Grande Prairie second mortgage is and the benefits in obtaining one.


What Is A Second Mortgage?

A second mortgage is an additional home loan that is taken out on your house, where your home is put up as collateral in case you default on your payments and are unable to pay back your broker. This mortgage does not replace your original mortgage, it is in addition to. This means that you will have to make two separate payments towards your mortgage every month.

In order to qualify for a Grande Prairie second mortgage, the requirements are the same as when you applied for your first mortgage, which includes having a steady income and a good credit score. Also, it is important that you are not in large amounts of debt. You will not be approved for a second mortgage if you owe too much on your first mortgage, so be sure and pay off your home loan as much as you can before you apply.


Benefits Of A Second Mortgage

When you obtain a second mortgage, you gain access to a large sum of money by tapping into your existing home equity. Once you have this money, there are no restrictions on what you can use it for. So, if you wish to purchase more real estate with this amount, you can. Or, you can use this money to help pay for your child’s college tuition or you can even pay off any loans you may have accumulated over the years. Taking out a second mortgage can also be used to fund a luxurious vacation or purchase a dream car.


Get Started Today

Whatever the case may be, a Grande Prairie second mortgage can offer you immense financial benefits. So don’t wait, contact your local mortgage broker, Gert Martens, today at 780-933-0109 to get started!

8 Oct

Mortgage Calculators


Posted by: Gert Martens

Congratulations on making the decision to purchase a home. There are a lot of benefits to homeownership such as more privacy, it’s a great financial investment, there are some initial tax benefits, more creative freedom, and home equity. Making sure you have the appropriate amount of finances so you can afford a house and start reaping these benefits of home ownership is the first step of the loan approval process.

Reviewing your finances and using a mortgage calculator is a convenient way to stay on top of your expenses and help you become more organised. So, to help you get started, your local Grande Prairie mortgage broker, Gert Martens with Dominion Lending Centres, has listed the usefulness and importance of mortgage calculators.

Mortgage Calculators

A mortgage calculator is a useful tool where you can find out what type of mortgage payments you will have depending on the type of home you are looking for. With this device, you can manually type in the sale price of the home you want, the down payment percentage you are thinking about paying, the length of the mortgage you are interested in, and the annual percentage interest rate.

Once you input all this information, multiple different factors are calculated. The calculator will provide information on how much you would owe if you were to make a 10% down payment on a $150,000. It is important to note, however, that if you pay below 20% on your down payment in Canada, you will be required to obtain mortgage default insurance.

Your mortgage calculator will also tell you what the amount that would need to be financed is, your monthly payment with principal and interest as well as what your monthly payment would be if you had to pay mortgage default insurance on top of your Grande Prairie home loan payments.

Regardless if you are a first-time home buyer or are refinancing your home, a mortgage calculator is free to use and can help you see what your affordability is before you begin the application process. Please click HERE to try out our mortgage calculator today!

Contact Us

For more information on mortgage calculators or to get started on your application for a Grande Prairie home loan, please contact Gert Martens at 780-933-0109.

13 Sep

Tips For Renewing Your Mortgage


Posted by: Gert Martens

Renewing your mortgage has a lot of added benefits, such as shortening or extending your loan’s amortization period, receiving the current low-interest rates, or to consolidate your debt. Whatever the case may be, there are a few tips you should know before you begin the mortgage renewal application process.

So, to help get you started, your local Grande Prairie mortgage broker, Gert Martens with Dominion Lending Centres, has listed 5 useful tips for renewing your mortgage.

Tip #1: Shop Around

Most homeowners don’t realise that you do not have to stay with your current mortgage broker if you wish to renew your mortgage. Instead, shop around and compare different lenders prices with one another so you who is offering the best rates. It is also worth noting that you will not be charged a fee if you switch brokers, so there is no harm in shopping around and comparing prices.

Tip #2: Review Your Finances

Before you begin the renewal process for a Grande Prairie mortgage, review your finances and come up with a financial goal so you are prepared when you go in to speak with a broker. Having a plan and sharing it with your broker can help them understand what exactly you are hoping to achieve with your mortgage.

Tip #3: Good Credit

Your credit score still largely affects the type of rates you will receive on your mortgage renewal, just as it affected your primary mortgage. Therefore, make sure you have good credit before you apply or you risk the chance of your application getting denied.

Tip #4: Pay Down Debt

Grande Prairie mortgage brokers will be more inclined to reject your application if you have large amounts of debt. So, before you begin the application process, pay off any high-interest debt you may have. This can also help increase your credit score.

Tip #5: Don’t Accept A Bank’s Posted Rate

A bank’s posted rate may seem like the cheapest option but it is not. Instead, negotiate with a bank first to see how low they are willing to drop their rates. You may even want to consider using a mortgage broker so they can find you the best rates on the market.

Contact Us

For more information on tips for renewing your mortgage or to begin your Grande Prairie mortgage application, please contact Gert Martens with Dominion Lending Centres at 780-933-0109.

9 Aug

Market Update – July 2018


Posted by: Gert Martens

Buying a home is a huge investment, and will most likely be the biggest expense you ever have. It is important as a first-time homebuyer to be familiar with the residential market before you make such a big financial commitment. Therefore, comparing listing prices and viewing sales over the last year can help you decide when the best time to buy is, and it can help you predict where housing prices might head in the future.

If you are searching the greater Grande Prairie area and are in need of a Wembley mortgage, then it is important to be up to date with the current market trends. So, to help you get started, Gert Martens with Dominion Lending Centres has listed the most current market update for Grande Prairie and its surrounding area.

Market Update

According to the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), the total residential homes that were sold in June 2018 was 282 units, which was a drastic 21.6% increase from June 2017. By comparing the number of homes that were sold from January to the end of June, a total number of 1,347 units were sold, which was a 20.2% increase from this same time frame last year.

The average price of homes sold in the Grande Prairie area was $319,084, which was a 5.3% rise from June 2017. The provincial average price for houses sold decreased 2.3% compared to the previous year, with the average price being $402,354. With this recent decline in the provincial average price, now would be an excellent time to lock in a rate for your Wembley mortgage before the prices go back up.

In addition, at the end of June, there were a total of 536 active listings posted, which was an 11.3% decrease compared to the year prior. This amount of listings is surprising since spring and summer is the best time to put a home on the market. This decrease in active listings could be due to the new Canadian mortgage rules, which has affected the overall amount homebuyers can borrow. Talk to your local Wembley mortgage broker for more details.

Contact Us

If you would like to know more information on the current residential market for the Grande Prairie and surrounding area or would like to get started on your application today, please contact Gert Martens with Dominion Lending Centres at 780-933-0109.

16 Jul

Top Reasons to Buy a Home


Posted by: Gert Martens

Taking the initiative to quit renting and purchase a home is a big step. Knowing if you are financially ready to become a homeowner is half the battle, the other half is wondering if it really is worth it to make such a big purchase. Well as your trusted Wembley mortgage broker, Gert Martens with Dominion Lending Centers has listed the top 5 reasons on why you should buy a home.

Reason #1: Consistent Payments

When you rent a home, your landlord has the right to increase your monthly rent at the end of every lease. This means that you could be spending more money on each renewal. However, if you buy a home and obtain a fixed rate mortgage your monthly rates will never change. This will allow you to accurately budget since you will know exactly how much you owe and how long it will take you to pay it off.

Reason #2: Creative Freedom

Landlords generally do not allow tenants to change the interior of the home in any way, or there is a fee. If you own your home, you will have the complete creative freedom to change and decorate the house any way you would like. You can paint the walls any color or even renovate the interior for a more modern look.

Reason #3: Good Investment

You will never see the money you spend every month on rent, again. It gives you no added, long-term benefit. Buying a house is a good investment because homes appreciate in value. In addition, every time you pay towards your Wembley mortgage, you are decreasing your loan balance and increasing your home equity. When you have enough equity in your home you can access that money and use it any way you would like.

Reason #4: Low-Interest Rates

Rates have currently been at an all-time low, which means now would be the best time to buy a house and obtain a mortgage with low, affordable payments. To find out what current rates are going for, contact your local Wembley mortgage broker at 780-933-0109.

Reason #5: Community Involvement

Homeowners are more likely to get involved in the community than those who rent. Owning a home could entice you to volunteer in the community to better the area in which you live. Community involvement is also an excellent way to meet new people, strengthen your skills and learn more about the area.

Contact Us

For more information on reasons to buy a home, or to get started on your Wembley mortgage application today, please contact Gert Martens at 780-933-0109.

12 Jun

5 Tips for Raising Your Credit Score


Posted by: Gert Martens

Your credit score largely affects what kind of rates you will receive on your La Crete mortgage. Therefore, it is important that you familiarise yourself with your current score so you have a better understanding of what type of mortgage you will qualify for. Your credit score not only determines how high of an interest rate you will receive, but it also dictates what kind of loan you will be able to apply for since each loan has a different requirement.

To help, Gert Martens with Dominion Lending Centres has made a list of 5 tips to help raise your credit score.

Tip #1: Make Sure Your Credit Report Is Correct

It is not uncommon for credit card companies to make a mistake on someone’s account. This means you should review your financial record to make sure all the information listed is correct. If there is an error on your record, fixing this problem could help improve your score.

Tip #2: Do Not Miss Payment Due Dates

If you skip a payment or have multiple late payments pending, your credit score will be negatively affected. Write on your calendar when these payments are due, or set up a reminder on your cell phone so you know exactly when you need to make your payments. Being organised and paying off late payments can help increase your credit score.

Tip #3: Pay Off Debt

Being in a lot of debt can hurt your credit score, so the more you pay towards your debt, the more your credit report will be improved. You can consolidate your debt by refinancing your La Crete mortgage. This can be done by accessing the equity in your home and using that money to pay off any outstanding balances you have. For more information, contact your local broker at 780-933-0109.

Tip #4: Get A Credit Card

If you do not have a credit card, your score could be very low and be affecting your ability to make big purchases. Getting a credit card can improve your credit if you stay on top of the payments and do not spend more than you can afford.

Tip #5: Avoid Retail Credit Cards 

If you are out shopping and a retail store says you will receive exclusive deals if you sign up for their credit card, do not accept this deal. Regardless if you get approved or not, filling out this application can cause your credit score to drop. If you want or need this type of credit card, avoid applying for one until you have already been approved for a home loan.

Contact Us

For more information on how to raise your credit score, please contact Gert Martens, your local La Crete mortgage broker, at 780-933-0109.

12 Jun

Tips for Buying in a Seller’s Market


Posted by: Gert Martens

It is no secret that buying a home can be a stressful experience, especially if you are buying in a seller’s market. This means the market is very competitive when looking for a resale home. As your local Wembley mortgage broker, I have made a list of five secrets to help relieve this stress and assist you when buying in a seller’s market.

1. Substantial Savings: The more money you have saved the more you can put towards your home’s down payment. This can help make you stand out when dealing with seller’s because it lets them know you are financially prepared to take on this commitment.

2. Patience: When trying to buy in a seller’s market, it is important to be patient. Do not let your emotions control your impulses because then you will end up spending more than you wanted. Getting impatient can cause you to go further into debt, so make a budget and stick to it. The right house in your appropriate price range will come around so do not fret. Set financial goals and stick to them so you are not paying more towards your Wembley mortgage.

3. Options: Keep your options open when shopping the market. If you are having no luck in a specific area then it might be best to start expanding your search. Fixating your search on one area will be harder for you to place an offer.

4. Back-Up Plan: If you are selling your house while also looking to buy a new one, then your current home might sell before this happens. This situation is common in a seller’s market, therefore, it is important to be prepared and have a backup plan. To avoid being homeless, make sure you find temporary housing to live in.

5. Seek Assistance: Don’t try to buy a home in a competitive market all by yourself. Seek assistance such as a real estate agent with years of experience. Using an agent who is familiar with the fast-paced market can provide special assistance to help you close on a home faster.

Finding out you want to buy a home in a seller’s market can be overwhelming but do not stress. As your local Wembley mortgage broker, I can assist you in helping you financially prepare for this new commitment. I would love to work with you and help make your dreams of homeownership come true. So don’t wait, call Gert Martens today at 780-933-0109 to get started.

19 Apr

Commercial Mortgages in Canada


Posted by: Gert Martens

If you are looking to buy a business or non-residential property, and need a commercial mortgage, then Gert Martens at Dominion Lending Centres is the right Grande Prairie mortgage broker for you. A commercial mortgage is any commercial property that is not residential. This can be any company, regardless of whether the business is a small partnership or a large corporation. Commercial mortgages are typically more expensive with higher interest rates compared with residential home loans.


Property Types

A Grand Prairie commercial mortgage can be used for any business, office, retail store, or industrial property. It can also be used for residential real estate if the property is purchased for investment purposes, and is not owner-occupied. This means you can get a commercial mortgage for a purely residential property of 1-4 units, 5 or more units, or a residential/commercial mixed property.


Types of Commercial Mortgages

The type of property you are buying varies on the loan-to-value (LTV) ratio. If you are looking to buy a residential/commercial mix, the max LTV ratio would be 80%. 5 or more units for residential investment would have an 85% LTV ratio. A commercial plaza, office, and industrial property’s max LTV ratio is 75%, and a farm land’s LTV ratio would be 55% max.

Obtaining a commercial mortgage takes a lot longer than your typical residential home loan. To get approved, this can take anywhere from 60 days to one year. It is important to do your research on different commercial mortgages so you are aware of the time frame, and can plan accordingly.



To qualify for a commercial mortgage, you will need to have a substantial amount of cash available. Your Grande Prairie mortgage broker will check your finances to see if you can afford the monthly loan payments. You will also be expected to invest your personal money into your new property.

Another qualification is the personal credit score of the business owner. If you have a bad financial record, you will most likely not get approved for your commercial mortgage. In addition, if your business has been around for a while, you will need to show proof of your company’s profit. A financial institution will not lend you money if they think your business is not profitable.

The down payment on a commercial mortgage is far more expensive than a residential one. The down payment for home loans is typically around 20%, but for a commercial mortgage, you will need to pay around 50%.


Get Started

For any questions on commercial mortgages in Grande Prairie, or to get started on your application today, please contact Gert Martens at 780-933-0109.