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Helping International Homebuyers

Brandon Scott is a Sherwood Park / Edmonton Mortgage Broker and the author of a weekly column entitled Real Estate Solutions in the Sherwood Park News. This article was originally published on May 10, 2013

Our province attracts people from all over Canada and abroad. It is because of our entrepreneurial spirit, the strong economy, and quality of life that entice many to make the move to this wonderful land we call home. Moving here from another Province can have its logistical challenges but is nothing compared to transitioning from another country like China or Australia. These families have secured employment and are then faced with the task of finding a place to live. For some of these professionals renting a space is not their preferred option; they are focused on buying a place to call their own. Recently our office was faced with doing just that, helping two families that have moved from overseas to Canada obtain financing so that they may purchase a home. In scenarios like these it’s important to remember there are usually more documents required from the borrower(s) to allow a lender to feel comfortable in providing a mortgage commitment. Having access to your banking information online or a relative in your previous country can go a long way in obtaining the additional information that will be needed. Further, as an international credit bureau may not be available, be cost prohibitive to obtain, or take too long it is also advised that a recommendation letter be obtained from the foreign banking institution. As lending policies can vary for these types of borrowers, having more documentation just in case, even if not needed, is always better than not enough. So if you have family living in another country that are considering moving to Canada, or if you have recently moved here and know that you’ll want to explore your options for owning a home it’s never too early to make sure you’ll have as much information as possible available to ensure your Canadian bank or lender can adequately present your application and give it the best possible chance for approval.   Download the current e-edition of the Sherwood Park News