We got on June’s Top Performer List!

Gert Martens 26 Jul

Out of more than 190 Dominion Franchise’s in Canada, this month our office HT Mortgage Group here in Grande Prairie ranked #18! We are at the top!

Congrats Megan & Kait & Gert for making the top 50 Performers in June!  And congrats to the whole office we are sitting at #18 in Canada for June!  That’s AMAZING!  I know everyone has been working super hard, and it shows😉

What is the top performer’s list? That’s when Dominion Lending Canada looks at all of its mortgage brokers all across Canada, and to let us know which agents and mortgage brokerages perform the best! Being able to be on this list when we live up North here in Grande Prairie is a huge honour!



Out of more than 190 franchise’s in Canada we are #18! Out of more than 2600 agents, we have two in the top 50!

Go Team Go!

Northern Alberta Tiny Home Finance

General 25 Jul

Tiny Homes  and getting them financed in Northern Alberta

Now I’m a big fan of the tiny home movement. I think that simple lifestyle, so minimalist is… very tempting. The only real problem is that there is a disturbing lack of tiny home developments up here in Northern Alberta!

Our House Magazine (which we give away free at our office in Downtown Grande Prairie) recently ran an article on a new tiny home development and charity in Calgary. “Tiny Homes for Heroes”

I’ve posted the article on another blog for today, but wouldn’t it be amazing if we could get a tiny homes community going here in Grande Prairie too!

The Challenge of Financing a tiny home

Financing a tiny home has some challenges. Here in Canada, most Tier A lenders (The big banks) want a single family home to be a minimum of a 1000 square feet, before lending. Lenders assume a smaller home is a cheaper, older home, with few upgrades.

So how are people getting tiny homes built if financing is so difficult?

Option 1 – Start a charity

Well, this is what our friends in Calgary did. Tiny homes, the 200-300 square feet version’s are fairly cheap to build. Fundraising enough money to build several little homes in a community format work’s well, and a normally sized plot for one home can support several tiny homes. This option is hard for most of us dreaming minimalist though. I want to live in a tiny house…. not just help build them!

Option 2 – Buy Raw Land and Start your own tiny home community

Most city’s have these pesky things called bylaws. They tell us the minimum size our house should be, what the proper ceiling height is, and how large windows need to be for fire code. For our safety, or so that all of the homes look nice and uniform… these bylaws make it difficult to find a place to build your tiny house!

Some developers and tiny home enthusiast’s have gotten around this by declaring their plot of land mobile home parks. If a tiny home is built on a trailer, different bylaws apply that are more favourable to a small home. Why build just one tiny home, when you can build a community?

Option 3 -The Easiest Financing Method

Grande Prairie’s rental market has less than 1% Vacancies right now. (July 2018)  A carriage house is a garage with living quarters, and that is something we can finance or refinance into your existing mortgage. So maybe you just design a garage that can be easily converted into a tiny home!

The downside is your sharing your lot, but you get to live in a tiny home, and have rental income! Later on, if you find the tiny home lifestyle isn’t as grand as you thought, you can always move back into the main house. Or move your kids into the tiny home.

Option 4 – Lobby our city hall representatives to make zoning exceptions for tiny homes

One day maybe! Now Calgary and Vancouver each have several bylaws designed to allow tiny homes in various communities throughout these two cities!

In the meantime, give our office a call to discuss options that may work for you!

Jillian Napen

Tiny Home Enthusiast, and Office Manager at Dominion Lending Centres
Ht Mortgage Group, 101 10001 100 ave Grande Prairie
July 25, 2018


Trevor Morris – Your Grande Prairie Mortgage Agent

Trevor Morris 4 Jun

Trevor Morris your Grande Prairie Mortgage agent and our mortgage agent of the week!

“I’ve always used a common sense approach to understand my client’s big financial picture and help them get to where they want to go. I’ve worked in finance for over 11 years and gained a reputation for digging deep on tougher to approve files so I’m ready to help you do more than dream about home ownership, no matter your situation. You can count on me to be a trusted advisor, guiding your mortgage from start to finish.

I’m based in Northern Alberta. I was born and raised in the Peace Region moving to Grande Prairie back in 1995. I took a little detour to Edmonton in 2012, but recently returned home. In my spare time, I enjoy going to Orange theory and mountain biking.
Come say Hi, I’m working in downtown Grande Prairie on the corner of 100th and 100th.

Or give me a call!

Pam offers free homebuyer education

First Time Homebuyer 28 May

Pam Lobban offers free homebuyer education

I love working with first time homebuyers because I enjoy taking the time to educate clients on the process. I’ve been licensed to do mortgages since May 1999, so I’ve built up a lot of knowledge to help homebuyers.  Sometimes working in this industry it’s easy to forget that most people don’t know the basics when it comes to mortgage financing; that’s where I come in. I do a free class on Grande Prairie Mortgage Basic’s.

Book a time to learn

If you think you might want to buy your first home in the future call me so we can set up a mutual time to get you pre-approved!  You’ll have a completely free lesson in steps you can take now to be prepared to buy the home of your dreams in the future.

There is really not a reason to wait, it’s a no pressure, free and educational process.  I would love to meet you!

Megan Lemay – Grande Prairie Mortgage Broker

Megan Lemay 23 May

This week Megan Lemay is our Grande Prairie Mortgage Broker of the week. For over 11 years Megan has been a core part of our team at Dominion Lending of Grande Prairie.

“I have the greatest job in the world…I’m a mortgage broker. My job is to figure out a borrower’s wants and needs so I understand their unique life situation. Then I shop the 40ish lenders we have, to access you the mortgage that fit’s you best. I’m 100% commission so the best part is that I don’t charge a fee for my work. I love helping people purchase a home, even when they don’t think they’ll be able to. So many people feel overwhelmed by a credit mistake or life situation that impacted their financial stability. There’s nothing more rewarding than helping borrowers understand credit, fix what’s negatively impacting that credit, and helping them buy a home of their own.”

Megan and her husband Chris live out in DeBolt, with their 1-year-old son, Cullen. Megan and Chris are self-employed so their days are busy! In Megan’s spare time, she loves the outdoors and spending time with her tight-knit family.

Give her a call today and to shop local and national lenders for the best rate and mortgage for your home.

Gert Martens- Get to know your Mortgage Agent

Gert Martens 7 May

Gert Martens your Grande Prairie and La Crete Mortgage Agent
Gert partnered with Dominion Lending Centres back in 2010, along with her assistant Carmen Ciesla. Her other assistant Jodi Scotton joined the team a few years later. She has received numerous awards as a mortgage agent and top producer. Just recently she received the MPP top producer award for 2017! Next time you’re in her office take a look around and see how many she has piled up, just waiting to go on the wall!
Her team has over 29 yrs combined experience in the mortgage industry. We take pride in providing clients with valuable financial information and mortgage options. Our goal is to make buying a home an enjoyable & exciting experience.
When not working Gert can be found at the Gym, playing soccer, taking on DIY home renovation projects, or travelling with her husband. Trips often consisting of running, biking, hiking, Nascar, and culinary experiences.
Give her a call today and get your mortgage started!

Quick Intro- Jodi Scotton Grande Prairie Mortgage Agent

General 1 May

Jodi Scotton Grande Prairie Mortgage Broker

Jodi has been helping families get their dream homes for over 10 years now. Previously Jodi was a Scotiabanker, and this industry insider knowledge will walk you through purchasing or refinancing your next home, easily and seamlessly.

“I grew up in Peace River, moved to Grande Prairie in 2014, this is my market. I understand what it’s like living in the peace and getting financing up here in Northern Alberta. With my expert advice I’ll make your home purchase simple.

My husband Dale and I have been married for 10 years with our beautiful little Izzy. I always look forward to warm Summer Months when we can spend time outside having BBQ’s and fires with family and friends.

I look forward to meeting with you and your family, giving you the ability to buy your newest dream home.”

Give Jodi a call today, and walk into your dream home tomorrow!  

Darren Ward, A good time to switch lenders?

Darren Ward 16 Apr

Our mortgage agent of the week is Darren Ward, coming to us from a corner office 700km away in Calgary. Over 80% of Darren’s business is still being done here in Grande Prairie and the surrounding areas.

Darren was born in Grande Prairie and raised in La Glace so he’s ready to answer your local questions!

Q – Can I switch from my current mortgage lender and when is a good time to do this?

Darren – Great question, you can switch from your current lender and the best time to do this is at your mortgage renewal date. If you have a standard mortgage (no HELOC attached) you can switch and the new lender will cover the costs, plus you get yourself the best possible rate out there. Even if you do have a HELOC, there will be a processing fee involved but this can still be done.

Are you wondering if a switch is good for you? With 47% of all mortgages in Canada coming up for renewal in 2018, this may be a good time for you to check!




Darren Ward

Mortgage Agent

Dominion Lending Centres HT Mortgage Group

Office: (780) 513-6611

Cell: (403) 805-5322