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Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

Old Oct 4th 2016, 10:15 am
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Default Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

My situation is that I am looking at a fresh start, due in on my LMIA work permit very soon and will apply for PR if I have a suitable idea of how I can get a mortgage on a very small place so that I can stop paying rent asap. In the UK I have mortgage options, but I prefer a return to Canada again, only this time with a longer term plan if it makes sense. My thoughts are that it might pay in the long term to settle on a bank, develop history with them and that will get me to a mortgagable situation sooner rather than later especially as I am now 50 and intend to work to 70. It is unlikely to be a cheaper option perhaps, but it could be a more direct route.

I'll have no deposit initially, but also no debt/loans/cards. I will save for a deposit as I'm not concerned about a car at this early stage and am prepared to knuckle down where I can on the cost front. Size of property is immaterial, preferably a one bed, but studio/bachelor if that is all that's affordable.

Scotiabank offer a way to start an account before I set off and claim to be a helpful bank for temporary and permanent resident mortgages including card services, which is why I now ask the question.

Does anyone have advice on how best to proceed with any other banks given these circumstances?

Thank you as always.
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 2:14 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

I know RBC does special deals on mortgages for new arrivals to Canada, which also includes car loans and access to credit cards without needing Canadian credit history.

Newcomers to Canada - RBC

Before you move I suggest you get a copy of your three credit history reports (especially Equifax). Although these aren't transferred I found some concerns of banks can be alleviated by showing them good credit history in the UK.
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 2:19 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

Originally Posted by Engineer_abroad View Post
I know RBC does special deals on mortgages for new arrivals to Canada, which also includes car loans and access to credit cards without needing Canadian credit history.

Newcomers to Canada - RBC

Before you move I suggest you get a copy of your three credit history reports (especially Equifax). Although these aren't transferred I found some concerns of banks can be alleviated by showing them good credit history in the UK.
I already have an account with Equifax UK so that's no trouble at all. Back in 2005 I had an RBC account (chq/credit card/credit line) so there is some history there, although during the search I seemed to get the impression that RBC were not the most helpful for some. It did come across that it might simply be their representatives not being consistent though.
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 2:35 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

Originally Posted by Caribou Jones View Post
I already have an account with Equifax UK so that's no trouble at all. Back in 2005 I had an RBC account (chq/credit card/credit line) so there is some history there, although during the search I seemed to get the impression that RBC were not the most helpful for some. It did come across that it might simply be their representatives not being consistent though.
My experience with them since moving has always been positive I think it depends on where you are and who you get as a rep. I opened my account in downtown Vancouver which may be more use to handling expat accounts and concerns than say a small isolated branch in the interior.
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 9:02 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

We've had very unhappy experiences with the RBC branch in my small area of Vancouver ........ incompetent tellers on 3 occasions when I was trying to deposit money in my daughter's account at an RBC branch in Nova Scotia.

That SHOULD be a very simple procedure!

On one occasion, I even told the teller to phone a certain person in my bank across the street and ask her what to do

We ended up setting up another account with our bank and making her a 3rd signatory to it. Now we just transfer money between accounts as and when needed

On the other hand .......... son-i-l has had accounts with RBC for over 25 years and thinks they're great. He just changed his account to add daughter after they married.


............... he did however find that BofM gave them a much better mortgage
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 9:18 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

If you've got a UK Amex card, get it converted to a Canadian one. You do that after you arrive. DO NOT cancel your UK one before you do this. That gets you a credit history going...

Get a credit card from a Canadian bank - they will only give you a $500 credit limit...but its a start. Use it for all your spending. Go home. Pay off day's spending via online banking. Repeat. Don't use your debit card for shopping. Every $ you rinse through your credit card counts....

Brokers will usually get you a (slightly) better mortgage deal thank walking in to the bank, even if it is with the same bank. They also have access to the 'whole' market rather than just the one bank, so will find you the better deal. Yes, brokers get commission, but so do bank mortgage staff....

We got a Scotiabank mortgage through a Broker. I bank with Scotia and two of my credit cards are there (was just the measly $500 one at the time!).

Last edited by withabix; Oct 4th 2016 at 9:21 pm.
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 9:41 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

Thanks for the replies folks.

I bank with Halifax, but do not havce AMEX, have a couple of (empty) credit cards, one with no fee foreign transactions which I'll use initially on arrival I imagine.

Could be Scotia>BoM>RBC at this stage! Did read that President's Choice has the cheapest banking, but my consideration is to perhaps accept higher monthly fees and take them on the chin if it does become a long term gain.
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 10:09 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

I'd be very wary about putting down roots until you have settled into a job and decided where would be a good area to live. If you decide or need to switch jobs you will greatly reduce the number of viable jobs if you are tied to one area, and it could prove expensive and time consuming to have to sell a place you own after just a short time.

IMO it's better to treat 6-12 months of renting as part of the cost of relocation and then look to buy when you have found your feet.
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 10:17 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
I'd be very wary about putting down roots until you have settled into a job and decided where would be a good area to live. If you decide or need to switch jobs you will greatly reduce the number of viable jobs if you are tied to one area, and it could prove expensive and time consuming to have to sell a place you own for you to move.

IMO it's better to treat 6-12 months of renting as part of the cost of relocation and then look to buy when you have found your feet.
Entirely agree and will be renting for some time I'm sure. Really looking to find a solid route from where to start my banking and potential lending given my age if others have opinions. Have lived and worked in Canada previously, expired PR in 2015 which I was unable to take up originally, so perhaps have a slight head-start in experience compared to some.
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 10:50 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

Originally Posted by withabix View Post
If you've got a UK Amex card, get it converted to a Canadian one. You do that after you arrive. DO NOT cancel your UK one before you do this. That gets you a credit history going...

Get a credit card from a Canadian bank - they will only give you a $500 credit limit...but its a start. Use it for all your spending. Go home. Pay off day's spending via online banking. Repeat. Don't use your debit card for shopping. Every $ you rinse through your credit card counts....

Brokers will usually get you a (slightly) better mortgage deal thank walking in to the bank, even if it is with the same bank. They also have access to the 'whole' market rather than just the one bank, so will find you the better deal. Yes, brokers get commission, but so do bank mortgage staff....

We got a Scotiabank mortgage through a Broker. I bank with Scotia and two of my credit cards are there (was just the measly $500 one at the time!).

Be very careful if you do this ...................

a friend on another forum was puzzled why she was being refused a credit card with an online company.

She had used a credit card and a department store card as you describe .......... use it to buy something, then paid it off immediately.

She discovered that doing this meant that there was NO record of her actually using a credit card and paying it off. In other words, she had not built up a credit history, and thus was deemed a credit risk.

The advice is actually to wait until the statement arrives, then pay it off before the due date ............. that gives you the credit history, and shows that you are a good credit risk because you pay all the debt off.
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Old Oct 4th 2016, 11:23 pm
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Default Re: Bank choices if looking to mortgage early on as a fresh start arrival?

Bank with your local Credit Union, comrade, you won't regret it.
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