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Natalie Wellings
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Very nice to see some support for the victims of the Fort McMurray fires from my lending partner, Scotiabank.

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It's a good rule of thumb to check your own credit, once a year, to find out what your score is and to make sure there aren't any mistakes reporting. I am available to answer any questions you may have about how credit works and how you can improve your score. Unfortunately, this sort of thing is not taught in school and I really believe that information is power! So, please get in touch with me if you have any questions at all about your credit situation. 

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The "what if's" in life are something to be considered when purchasing a home. Could you still afford the home if you, or your spouse, lost a job? If one of you became sick? Would you still comfortably make your payment if the interest rate was 4%, or 5%? What about house repairs? Do you have an adequate reserve fund to pay for unexpected costs? I'm not suggesting that we should all live in fear but it is important to make sure you can still afford your life when the worst things happen. This story states that borrowers ideally shouldn't use more than 30% of their gross monthly income on housing. Mortgage lenders, and insurers, routinely allow 39% (if you have great credit) which is much higher than recommended in this story. This couple has a lovely home, but it doesn't sound like they can afford it. Is it more house than what they realistically need? It's never a bad idea to spend less than your maximum pre-approved amount to leave room for the unexpected. Just my two cents!

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I feel terrible for the people that own units in this building. Not only have they been paying mortgage payments, property taxes and condo fees for a unit they cannot live in, now they are being told the building must be demolished at their expense. A very sobering reminder of why you need to read your condo documents in detail before you sign on the dotted line. I have a few lenders that are pretty picky about condo documents and I don't blame them. Who wants to be stuck with a mess like this? Read your condo docs, research your builder/developer. Make informed choices.

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