Alta West Capital's Nomination

We are proud to announce that Alta West Capital has been selected as a finalist for the Private Lender of the Year award. 


For over 29 years, Alta West Capital has been striving towards being a leader in the Alternative Lending space. This is a great recognition of our commitment to providing a comprehensive suite of products and services for our industry partners. We are truly thankful for your continued support.


Congratulations to all the 2020 nominees!

Alta West Capital Private Lender of the Year Finalist

Putting Canadians into Homes

Alta West Capital (AWC) is a dynamic Alternative Lender lending in Alberta, British Columbia, and Ontario. We have a 29-year history in serving Canadians by providing mortgage financing for those that fall outside of conventional banking guidelines, providing investments for financial independence, and performing philanthropic work in Canada and abroad. We take pride in providing alternative financing that puts Canadians in their homes. We do this by providing our broker partners the products, resources, transparency, and underwriting consistency that they require to do what they do best.


Whether you’re a mortgage professional, an investor or a client looking to borrow, the Alta West team has the experience and knowledge to provide a solution that fits your needs. 


Helping the Everyday Entrepreneur

At Alta West Capital, half of our team of thirty are either first or second-generation Canadians. With staff born in countries as varied as Egypt, Cambodia, China and Argentina, amongst others, there are eleven languages spoken in our office. Naturally, we love lending to new Canadians, helping people like ourselves thrive and excel as they become part of the Canadian landscape.


Hand in hand with new Canadians, are those who make a living for themselves. The self-employed are an underserved segment of the Canadian housing market and another population we love helping in their dream of home-ownership. We really do appreciate helping the everyday entrepreneur.

New Canadians and the self-employed, these are two of our largest market segments and in our experience, very rewarding people to work with.

Our investor base are predominantly Mom and Pop family investors, saving for their retirement dreams. Investors are often an overlooked demographic of Private Lending and one that we are proud to serve. Mortgage Investment Corporations (MIC’s) were created back in 1973 as a vehicle to allow everyday Canadians to participate in mortgage investments, and to profit, just like the big banks. We’re proud to do our little part to provide this important option to Canadian investors. 


Our People-first Approach

Taking feedback from our broker partners, we continue to update and expand our suite of products as well as improve our service to provide the best overall solution we can. Our experienced team operates on the philosophy of “making it happen, not letting it happen”. Find as many ways as you can to remove the obstacles to success for the client, the broker and the investor. 


The broker community has long known us for our fast and efficient underwriting and our “do what we say we’ll do” service. We are continually seeking to innovate and grow by adopting technology to further improve our processes, evolving to equip our team with the tools they need to improve efficiency in our application submission, underwriting and funding process.


But it can’t just be technology for technology sake. 

The key to successfully integrating software, software that actually makes a difference, is to have a “people-first” approach. 

When evaluating a new piece of software, we ask some simple questions. How will this help us provide better service to our brokers and their clients? What efficiencies will this bring? How will this make life easier for our staff, our brokers, our clients and our investors? The benefits of this approach were recently highlighted with the outbreak of Covid-19. 


Thrive, Not Survive

When Covid-19 broke, our mantra was “thrive, not survive”. We didn’t want our staff living with a “survival mentality”, we wanted them to thrive and to come out the other side of the pandemic along with the company, it’s brokers and clients, in a better place than before. 


Our strategy and success caught the eye of our technology provider, Salesforce, who were impressed enough to outline our success in this blog, now available on the Salesforce website. We are very proud of being recognized for this achievement.


Alta West Capital has made a considerable investment in technology, but not all new technology is to simply to create efficiencies, it must also protect customer information. In the mortgage industry we handle a lot of sensitive data and it’s our responsibility to ensure that the technology we implement is as safe as it is efficient. Every software implementation is made with security in mind to ensure that our client’s data is handled properly and is well protected. 

We take a people-first approach with cybersecurity and managing data, if it's important to them, it's important to us.

The Path to Homeownership

Our company, full of immigrants, has found pride in providing new Canadians with homes. We have extended our vision to help even more people in to homes outside of Canada. We realize the importance of giving back, not only to our community but to those less fortunate in some of the poorest parts of the world.


For the past couple of years, Alta West has partnered up with Shelter Canada and recruited a team of volunteers to travel to El Salvador to change the lives of people far less fortunate than us. We wanted to extend our ability to provide safe housing beyond our borders, in some of the poorest communities, in Central America. In addition to raising tens of thousands of dollars in donations, we have sent teams of staff to El Salvador, who with the aid of other volunteers, working in tandem with local leaders, have helped build over 500 homes for some of the world’s poorest people.


However, this year with Covid-19, and with the inability to travel south to build homes, we changed our focus and have given back to our local community by donating to the Calgary Food Bank. We hope to be back in El Salvador in 2021.


We love what we do. For some Canadians, we are the path to homeownership, for others the path to financial independence. Alta West Capital has a great, dedicated team, who enjoy what they do. We are very thankful for the opportunity to be considered for this award and would like to thank those who nominated Alta West Capital as well as the Mortgage Award of Excellence committee for considering our nomination.

In today’s housing climate, mortgage pre-approval is a key element of the house-buying process. More and more individuals and families are choosing to be pre-approved as a way to help plan for and evaluate the burden of owning a house and having a monthly mortgage payment. But what is pre-approval exactly?

What is Mortgage Pre-Approval?

In order to understand the importance of mortgage pre-approval, it’s first essential to have an understanding of what it is. You can apply for mortgage pre-approval with any mortgage broker or lender, including a bank, private mortgage lender, or mortgage investment corporation. Pre-approval will let you know the maximum amount you can afford for a home and will thus give you an idea of viable options on the market. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage will also unfold what your monthly mortgage payment will be based on your maximum purchase price. This information is crucial; many first-time home buyers focus strictly on the amount of the down payment but forget about working the mortgage payment, utility bills, and property taxes into their monthly budget. Pre-approval is one way for people to understand and evaluate the costs, risks, and benefits of owning a home prior to taking the plunge.

Why Is Pre-Approval Important?

If you’re the type of person who is more likely to throw caution to the wind, or preparedness just isn’t your strong suit, you should know there are several additional benefits to applying for mortgage pre-approval.

1. Saves Time

Receiving pre-approval from a mortgage lender can save you time spent looking at houses outside of your price range or trying to work out a budget based on hypothetical numbers. While pre-approval does not guarantee you will receive formal approval for your mortgage, it’s still useful information to have.

2. Locks-In Rates

Something that many individuals do not realize is that applying for mortgage-pre-approval protects you from increases in rates that may occur while you search for a new home. While you are not obligated to proceed with a particular lender, the mortgage lender you do choose is obligated to honour the rate given under your pre-approval for at least 120 days.

3. Shows Commitment

Mortgage pre-approval with a mortgage investment corporation or a bank indicates to home sellers and real estate agents that you are serious about buying. Realtors may be inclined to provide more attentive service and sellers may be more willing to negotiate, knowing how serious you are about proceeding.

4. It’s Free!

There can be a lot of hidden or extra costs surrounding buying a house, but applying for mortgage pre-approval is not of them. There are virtually no risks, meaning you have no reason not to get pre-approved!

How to Get Pre-Approved

While the company that you choose to get pre-approval from does not necessarily need to be the same company that you eventually choose for your mortgage, it’s a good idea to begin the process by looking for mortgage lenders you can trust. Keep in mind that banks may be able to offer better rates, but are also more difficult to receive approval from; when you apply for a mortgage with a bank, you are obligated to undergo a federal stress test. A private mortgage lender or a mortgage investment corporation does not have to follow all of the same requirements. You can check out this blog for more information on choosing the mortgage lender that’s right for you.

As you sit down with a mortgage broker or lender, they will likely ask you a series of questions surrounding 3 main factors:

  • Credit Score
  • Down Payment
  • Debt-Service Ratio

With a decent credit score, a healthy downpayment, and a balanced debt-service ratio, you should be able to qualify for the mortgage of your choice. If any of these factors are not where they should be, a mortgage investment corporation may still pre-approve your mortgage.

Tips From a Mortgage Investment Corporation

A mortgage investment corporation specializes in helping individuals with poor credit, low savings, or experiencing other dis-advantages, (such as self-employed business owners, families that are new to Canada, or first-time homebuyers) access the loan they need to move forward with the purchase of the house. While MICs may be more forgiving or less strict about some aspects of applying for a mortgage, there are still some things that you can do to help the process run more smoothly.

Don’t Spend the Maximum

Just because you received approval for a $400,000 mortgage does not mean you should spend that much. If you are approved for $400,000, you may want to consider looking at homes with listing prices closer to $350,000.

Pay Off Debt

Before applying for a mortgage, or even pre-approval of a mortgage, it might be a good idea to pay off some of your debt. If you are carrying a large balance on your credit card or you have an outstanding student loan, focusing a portion of your income towards minimizing the amount of total debt you have could help in the mortgage lending process.

Get a Second Opinion

Second opinions can not only help you find the best deals but also give you confidence that you’re on the right track. Keep in mind that a pre-approval does not mean you’re stuck with one lender — feel free to shop around!

Mortgage pre-approval is essential to the house-buying process, and it’s not scary or intimidating. Simply find a mortgage lender you can trust and start the process today!

When you’re looking to borrow, Alta West Capital can help. We offer a number of lending solutions for first time buyers, individuals and families that are new to Canada, self-employed business owners, real estate investors and more. Alta West loans are fast and flexible to fit your needs. Visit our website to apply online or contact us directly — call (403) 254-9075 or email

George Botros
Chief Executive Officer

George Botros was appointed as CEO of Alta West Capital in April 2021. Prior to his role as CEO, George served as Alta West Capital’s CFO and CCO from 2014 to 2021. He has over 20 years in the lending business, participating in residential, commercial, mezzanine, and interim financing related activities.


George is also a Director of the funds Alta West administers. Prior to joining Alta West Capital, he managed Toro Financial Corporation which amalgamated with AWM Diversified MIC, an entity managed by AWC, in 2014. George was also a University Professor teaching Finance and Economics for University of Lethbridge.


George holds a Bachelor of Economics and an MBA.