Believe it or not, credit reports are not infallible. Mistakes happen, and left uncorrected, can have a huge impact on your financial life. That includes your mortgage renewal, perhaps the biggest financial commitment you will ever make.
Before you start shopping around for a new mortgage agreement, take a close look at what's on your credit history and fix any errors. Your score can improve quickly and so will the interest rates offered by your lender.
Your credit report and mortgages: what's the connection?
Before you are approved for a mortgage, lenders determine whether you're an acceptable credit risk. Part of that is reviewing your credit report and score. While you may get offers of financing with a less-than-stellar history, it may cost you more than if you had a better score. The difference can mean a lot more money out-of-pocket every month, perhaps even hundreds or thousands of dollars.
Your score can affect you in unexpected ways. Especially if you've taken steps to clean up your credit history, a lender’s response to your report may come as a surprise.
Fixing credit errors and shopping around for lower mortgage rates
The figures in your credit report — important as they may be — are not always based on accurate information. This is good news for consumers, who may not know they have the right to dispute what's on a credit report and ask for errors to be fixed.
Among the more common errors are those related to personal identification, like addresses. Sometimes, negative information stays on the report longer than the law allows.
It’s important to have a look at your credit report, and request an update on anything that looks wrong. You can do this by contacting TransUnion or Equifax, Canada's two major credit bureaus, free of charge The bureaus should take action promptly (Equifax promises processing within 20 days) and you will receive an email or letter defining the results of the investigation.
Then you can start comparing the best mortgage renewal rates, without the fear of being surprised by a high rate or outright denial.
Get familiar with your credit history as early as possible
Given the difference that it can make, it's a good idea to review your credit history as soon as you can. That way, you can prepare yourself for the mortgage application or renewal process. You'll also have the chance to fix errors before lenders have the chance to give you a yea or nay for financing.
That said, your credit history is just one factor that goes into your mortgage choices. Other overarching factors, like the Bank of Canada’s policy rate adjustments play a huge part. To see some of your loan options, compare mortgage rates on RATESDOTCA and connect with a broker who can help you along your search.
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Engaging a mortgage broker before renewing can help you make a better decision. Mortgage brokers are an excellent source of information for deals specific to your area, contract terms, and their services require no out-of-pocket fees if you are well qualified.
Here at RATESDOTCA, we compare rates from the best Canadian mortgage brokers, major banks and dozens of smaller competitors.