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Term TypeRatePromo & Info
5 YearFixed (standard)2.49%
5 YearFixed (promo)2.29%-*call for restrictions
-High Ratio Only
-Meet property guidelines
5 YearFixed (promo)2.49% & -Condo Doc Review, Reimbursement $500 *call
5 YearVariable (promo)2.10%
* Subject to change without notice *OAC *Some Underwriting Restrictions Apply
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4 YearFixed2.39%**High Ratio Only
5 YearFixed2.29%**restricted, call for details
6 YearFixed2.99%
7 YearFixed2.99%
10 YearFixed3.54%

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Is it Safe to Accept a Mortgage from a Lender you’ve Never Heard of?

March 23, 2015 | Posted by Nathan Zacharias | Tagged in

You may notice a trend in Canada where smaller lenders are becoming more popular. Sometimes these lenders are referred to as monoline lenders. Why? Well, that’s simple: they only have one line of business, and that line is mortgages.

Mortgage From Unknown Person

You may ask yourself: Should I meet with one of these lenders instead of your bank? Should I trust a lender that doesn’t provide banking services? Will I be offered the same services and packages as the bank?

It may come as a surprise, but seeking a mortgage from a lesser-known mortgage lender may save you 10 to 20 basis points on your mortgage. Monoline lenders focus on one product, and they give this product all of their focus. Without expensive office space for branches and the overhead that goes along with servicing a bank branch, they are competitive and offer some of the best mortgage rates in Alberta and the surrounding provinces.

For some, the decision rests on one factor: Whether or not the lender has a branch and/or office location where borrowers can meet and discuss their mortgage. This factor is important for some people such as the elderly, and may be one thing certain monolines don’t offer. However, this doesn’t mean that you cannot get the answers to any questions regarding your mortgage.

Monoline lenders can provide top-notch customer service and manage it over the phone, online, by mail-outs and even with online chat in some cases. Because there are no bank accounts, RSP’s, line of credits, or savings accounts to deal with, you might just find your answers sooner with a monoline lender.

The paradox involved when using these lenders often stems from our friends at the bank who have been known to use fear of the unknown to entice borrowers to remain loyal. The reality is that the same laws apply to the big and the small, no matter what their affiliation.

Whether financial troubles develop for the borrower, or the lender, and regardless of what flag is being flown, there is a framework of legislation and case law that determines what happens. In most cases where a lender’s business is sold or liquidated, the mortgagor (the borrower) has no interruption in mortgage payments and it is business as usual.

The best way to access a monoline lender is through an Alberta Mortgage Broker. Of course, many brokers offer a sit down service that fills the void of the missing banker.
Some of the more popular smaller lenders are: Canadiana, Street Capital, Merix Financial. As always, know your options. The easiest way to do that is by contacting a mortgage broker in your area.