1. Client Services
  2. Mortgage Resources
  3. FAQs
Wooden question mark bookcase

Tips for getting started and managing your mortgage

Have Questions? We Can Help

Answers to your most common mortgage questions

Choosing CWB Optimum Mortgage
Who is Canadian Western Bank?

Canadian Western Bank (CWB) is the largest publicly traded Canadian bank that is headquartered in Western Canada. Canadian Western Bank Group's partner companies offer services in banking, trust, insurance and wealth management.  

Learn more about CWB Financial Group here. 
Who is CWB Optimum Mortgage?
CWB Optimum Mortgage is a full service lender that provides clients with borrowing solutions. We offer a full range of products to meet our clients' needs, while continuing to deliver an exceptional level of service. 
What is the relationship between CWB and Optimum?
Optimum is the residential lending business of CWB Financial Group. We are a partner company of CWB. This means your mortgage will be backed by the security of a Schedule I bank. 
What is alternative lending?

CWB Optimum Mortgage specializes in alternative lending, where we provide customized solutions to clients who do not fit traditional lending guidelines. This could include clients who:

  • Are self-employed or commissioned individuals
  • Earn additional "soft income" on the side (such as tips)
  • Have bruised credit due to extenuating circumstances
  • Have outstanding Canada Revenue Agency debts
  • Are new immigrants to Canada
  • Are residential real estate investors

Getting started
What does principal balance mean?
This is the outstanding balance that you still owe on your mortgage at any given point. It reflects the payments made since your mortgage was advanced. 
How can I get a lower interest rate?
  • Lock in a competitive interest rate through a fixed rate mortgage
  • Decrease your long-term interest charges with a variable rate mortgage
  • Blend & extend your mortgage rate - blend the rate on your existing mortgage with the rate of an extended term
  • If you own equity in your home, take advantage of a HELOC for a flexible mortgage solution that can change as your needs change
What are my payment frequency options?
  • You can make bi-weekly, accelerated bi-weekly or monthly payments.
  • If you choose monthly payments, you can also select the day of the month that your mortgage payment is due.
What are my payment privilege options?
  • Pay a lump sum of up to 20% of your original mortgage amount once per calendar year
  • Increase the amount of your regular payments by up to 20%
  • Double up your regular payments: Your regular principal and interest payments will increase and more money will be put toward paying down your principal balance
Why do I need earthquake and/or fire insurance?

In the event of a loss (fire, earthquake, etc.), your outstanding mortgage will remain due. If you have sufficient and correct coverage, your insurance provider may cover any losses that have taken place, helping you manage your mortgage balance. 

What is the difference between a discharge fee and a payout statement?

A discharge fee is:

  • An administration fee
  • Used to process the payout and any subsequent documentation
  • Subject to provincial guidelines

A payout statement is:

  • A snapshot of your mortgage balance, accrued interest, arrears, prepayment charges, etc
  • Used to show the amount required to pay off your mortgage
Should you payout your mortgage, then mortgage discharge documents will be created to discharge the mortgage off title.  
What are insurer guidelines?
Meeting the insurer's guidelines will help you to get approved for a higher mortgage amount. Visit CMHC or Sagen for more information.      

Managing your mortgage
What are my options to transfer my existing mortgage? Transferring your existing mortgage to your new home is called porting your mortgage. Our mortgages allow you to:
  • Transfer your existing interest rate and mortgage balance
  • Avoid prepayment charges upon your approval
How do I manage my property taxes? Property taxes must be paid and maintained by the homeowner. We may ask for evidence of paid property taxes each year. Most municipalities offer monthly payment programs. Contact your local tax office for more details. 
How can I get a lower interest rate?
What are my options to refinance?

By refinancing, you can reduce your monthly payments and save on interest charges. It is your choice how the funds from a refinance are used:

  • Consolidate debt into one easy payment
  • Pay outstanding Canada Revenue Agency debts
  • Renovate your home
  • Go on a dream vacation
  • Take advantage of a new investment
Calculate your savings to get started. 
How do I renew my mortgage?

Complete your renewal agreement (mailed to you 45 days prior to your existing maturity date):

  • Select a term, initial, sign and date the renewal offer
  • Fax, email or mail your documents within the self-addressed and prepaid envelope
  • Check that the renewal agreement is received on or before your maturity date
Don’t hesitate to discuss your options with one of our renewal specialists at 1.866.441.3775