Dustin Spate: Bringing fun to underwriting
Name: Dustin Spate
Role: Mortgage Underwriter with Bridgewater Bank
Years worked in financial services: 11
Work location: Lethbridge
Dustin may be new to Bridgewater Bank, but he’s not new to helping people find that perfect mortgage solution. He is a mortgage underwriter working out of Lethbridge who helps people across the country get the mortgage they want and need. As a problem solver, he’s well suited to the role, and a light-hearted person, he brings fun to the office.
Starting out in finance
Q: How did you become interested in the financial services industry?
Dustin: I actually became interested in mortgages when my wife and I tried to buy a house. As we went through the process, I realized this was something I wanted to do, and I pursued my license. I worked as a broker assistant for two years and a mortgage broker for nine.
Q: In the span of your career, what are you most proud of?
Dustin: In 2018, I was part of a Masters Club for Mortgage Alliance as one of Canada’s 25 top mortgage brokers.
The path to alternative lending
Q: What led you to Bridgewater Bank?
Dustin: I enjoyed the broker work, but when I looked at what I wanted out of my life and career, I found I wanted to put together deals. I was already underwriting a bit for other brokers in the office. When the underwriting job opportunity at Bridgewater Bank came up, I jumped on it. Now, I get to work on deals all the time, and that’s so much more fun.
Q: What is your alternative lending experience?
Dustin: Most of my alternative lending experience has been here at Bridgewater Bank. When I worked as a broker, most of my clients didn’t need an alternative lending solution. I spent quite a bit of time helping them qualify by coaching them on things like how to reduce debt ratios and improve credit scores.
Q: What is your favourite part of being an underwriter?
Dustin: I love everything about it. I see new files every day, with challenging scenarios and situations for the people I’m trying to help. It is refreshing to face something different each time I open a file.
On a personal note
Q: What’s your best childhood memory?
Dustin: I remember being out at my grandparents’ acreage in BC. The snow was taller than I was, and I loved the calmness of being in the woods.
Q: Who do you most admire in life?
Dustin: There is no one person. Rather, I admire anyone brave enough to pursue their passions.
Q: If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
Dustin: I have travelled a lot, but if I could choose, I’d want you to drop me in the middle of nowhere. It kind of goes with my love of problem-solving. I enjoy working with my hands and would enjoy learning to live off the land. Yes, I really like camping, but my wife…not so much, so we haven’t done much of it lately.
Q: What’s a skill you’d like to learn and why?
Dustin: As I mentioned, I’m good with my hands. I enjoy working on projects, like the built-in bench I made for our kitchen table. I would like to learn more about using chisels and handcrafting furniture.
Q: Do you want to share some final thoughts about your job?
Dustin: My favourite part of being a broker was helping people get into a house. Over the past few years, real estate prices and interest rates have increased, making it harder for a mortgage professional to help people. Working for an alternative lender like Bridgwater Bank gives me more flexibility, and I’m finding a great deal of satisfaction in being able to help when other lenders can’t.
Learn more about our other expert underwriters who are all here to help you.