FAQs

 

Why choose Homewise?

First and foremost, Homewise works for you, not the banks or lenders. This means that we always have your best interests in mind. We also make the mortgage experience fast, transparent and simple by bringing it online, while setting the goal of saving our users the most money possible. We take the guesswork out of the application process with an easy online profile setup that uses understandable language and simple examples. Unlike going directly to a bank, our team of tech-powered mortgage experts will do the work for our users to find them a great rate and tailored features from one of the multiple lenders. Then, leave the negotiation and hassle to us, as we work to find a mortgage that is right for you. We will then be there for support and guidance for the full process from approval to close and throughout the term of the mortgage. 

     

What does Homewise do?

Homewise is like a traditional mortgage broker brought into the future, we do this by utilizing smart technology to streamline the process and search through all of our lender partners for the perfect fit for your financing needs. Homewise guides our users through a simple mortgage process, while also providing tools, content and information along the way to help make an informed decision. We work with users from first-time homebuyers to seasoned homeowners to help them get pre-approved, approved, switch or refinance their mortgage. From the start to finish, we enable our users to get their best mortgage, while we do the heavy lifting (negotiation) with the lender for them. Making the process simple and easy, and dare we say- fun! 

   

Who can use Homewise?

Whether you are “just looking”, have already purchased your home or are looking to switch/refinance, we are here to help you throughout the mortgage process. We provide answers and support for any home financing need. 

    

How can Homewise save me thousands of dollars on my mortgage? 

Our lenders and partners were meticulously picked for our marketplace so that we can offer our users a wealth of products at competitive rates and terms. These lower rates and strong terms/features will save our users thousands of dollars over the lifetime of their loan vs. average mortgages provided through the banks. Further, through the signup process, we ask you a series of question to get to understand your persona. This will enable us to find a mortgage that has features that will also help solve for your needs. For example, if your profile tells us that your salary is increasing, we will ensure that we have a mortgage that includes prepayment features. These features can save you tens of thousands of dollars in interest over the lifetime of your mortgage - and, importantly, help you pay off your mortgage more quickly! 

    

Can I refer a friend to use Homewise? 

Yes! We love that our users enjoy our process and would like to refer a friend, family member or colleague. So, once you have closed a mortgage through Homewise you will be provided with a unique link that you can share with friends, family or colleagues. If a user signs up using your link and gets a mortgage using Homewise, you will be given a $200 gift card and they will get $100 gift card (as well as a great mortgage) it’s a win-win! 

    

Where is Homewise available? 

Homewise is currently available in Ontario directly; however, we are working to increase our availability across Canada. (We do however, co-broker across Canada, so you can still apply. You will just be working with one of our great Canadian partners). 

      

If your services are free, how does Homewise make any money? 

Homewise is absolutely free for our users. From top to bottom we will do all of the work for you without any charges. We get paid by the lenders when your mortgage closes. This means that we only get paid once you get your mortgage. That is why we always work hard to ensure that you are getting the best service and mortgage possible. Further, because we are a digital business, we have lower costs on our end that we parlay on to you. So we take a lower commission from our lenders to get you a better mortgage than the banks and brokers are able to get for you. 

       

Will my mortgage be better if I work with Homewise? 

Yes! At Homewise, we work with multiple lenders and partners to provide our users with a wealth of mortgage options. We are a digital mortgage brokerage and unlike tradition brokers, we provide our users with options and knowledge so that they can choose their own mortgage. Our relationships with lenders allow us to get rates and features that homebuyers will usually have to negotiate and haggle for on their end, which is not an easy task and can be a big hassle - potentially reaching out to multiple lenders to do so. This can be time-consuming and frustrating for someone who has a full-time job and everyday life to worry about it. We have mortgage experts on our team with over 20 years of experience. Let us take care of everything so that you are free to take care of you and the ones you love and focus on moving into your new home. Further, we often “buy down” rates. This means that we use the commission the banks pay us to get you an even lower rate. As we always say, our goal is to get you the best mortgage possible. 

         

Should I go directly to my Bank to get my mortgage? 

When you go to a bank to find your mortgage, there are a couple things of which you should be aware. You are going to only one type of lender to solve for your needs, limiting your choices of loan products as well as rates. Secondly, banks will often provide you with their posted rates, which are can be higher than the rates we offer, as we have access to wholesale rates. Finally, they have certain restrictions on the types of clients they can work with, so there is a chance that you may not even be approved for their respective mortgages. Working with Homewise, we match your unique profile to a lender that best meets your needs. No more hassle! 

How does getting a mortgage with Homewise work?

Once our users start their online application they are matched with a dedicated team of tech-powered mortgage experts. Our experts provide users with the best service possible and offer multiple ways to connect, including phone, email or text. Whatever our users prefer.

Once signup is complete, our experts will review the user profile and search through a list of lenders and partners to find the best mortgage possible. Our team will then guide users through the full process from approval (or pre-approval or refinance or switch) all the way to the mortgage closing and moving into your home. We are also always there once you move in to answer any questions you have and provide the support you need. 

How do I know that my personal and financial information is safe?

Your security is paramount to us. We have put into place a series of safeguards and security measure to ensure that all of your information is secure. This includes an encryption of your data at the level of a bank. Moreover, we will never share any of your information with third-party advertising companies. We also use Secure Socket Layer technology to further protect your information. 

How long does it take to get pre-approved or approved? 

Once we have your full profile and corresponding documentation, we work to get your approval or pre-approval within 48-72 hours. We know that this process can be stressful and that speed is extremely important. That is why we ask for the time constraints in our application and also recommend you add any additional information after you sign up. 

What is mortgage pre-approval? 

A mortgage pre-approval is a commitment from an institution (lender) that sets forth the parameters for which they'll lend you money, such as interest rates. The most important criteria these institutions look at are; earnings, credit rating, and down payment size.

Pre-approvals are almost essential for the purchase of real estate for the following reasons:

  • They narrow down the options for purchase because the borrower can evaluate the size of their down payment and the amount of money they are able to borrow.
  • Pre-approvals give purchasers realistic expectations of what they can buy.
  • Realistic expectations make the purchasing process much smoother and less time consuming by eliminating the need to visit homes that are unrealistic to the buyer.
  • Most importantly, when it comes time to put an offer on the property, a pre-approval eliminates stress and lowers the number of defaults from a lack of financing.


What is mortgage approval? 

A mortgage approval is a judgment or assessment that is made by a lender (bank, credit union, etc) that overviews if the borrower will be able to repay and qualify for a mortgage loan that they are looking to obtain. The formal approval means that the lender has agreed that the borrower qualifies for a mortgage and is approved to use them as a lender. When you are approved, the lender will supply a mortgage commitment outlining the conditions that we will need to fulfill in order to complete and fund the purchase or refinance.

Is there a fee to pull my credit score? 

No. Homewise covers the cost to pull your credit score.

I am self-employed, can Homewise help me with my mortgage? 

Yes! As we work with multiple lenders, we will find the one that best serves your unique needs. This also includes commission based salary.  Be advised, if you are self-employed most lenders require that you have owned the business for at least 2 years. 

Do you offer mortgages for commercial properties? 

Yes. Although our focus is on residential home loans, we can still process commercial loans. Please reach out to us by phone or email to discuss further.  

Do you offer mortgages from private lenders? 

Homewise sets the goal of providing mortgage solutions for any of your home loan needs. That is why we work with partners that provide mortgages from private lenders to ensure that we can help individuals who may not get approved for a tier 1 or tier 2 lender. 

What are closing costs and what is included? 

Many first time home buyers do not take into account the costs that come up the day of closing of their purchase. They think, and rightfully so, that the purchase of their home consists only of the down payment and the mortgage. Unfortunately, closing costs are also a part of the process and can be significant. It is always important to consult your lawyer to find out exactly how much money will be necessary to bring in on closing. As a general guide, 

Prices based on: a $600,000 mortgage, in Toronto, not a new home or condo with a 20% down payment

  • Appraisal Fee - $300 (not always applicable)
  • Home Inspection - $300 (not always applicable) 
  • Land Transfer Tax (Ont) - $4,500 (first time homebuyers will receive rebate)
  • Land Transfer Tax (Toronto) - $4,500 (first time homebuyers will receive rebate)
  • Real Estate Lawyers - $2,800
  • New hydro account - $200 
  • Property Insurance - $60 (monthly)
  • Title Insurance - $300
  • Closing Adjustments - $450

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