Lenders on Brokers 2012

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When 450 brokers sit down to rank, reward and roust their lenders, those lenders take notice. CMP’s sixth-annual Broker on Lenders survey garnered the same reaction, with both monolines and banks queuing up to thank and reassure broker-partners.

This year, those responses are varied, but all involve identifying successes and areas to improve.  
Generally, those areas align with those of the survey: approval/ loan turnaround times, underwriter support, overall service level, interest rates, BDM support, product range, satisfaction with credit policy, broker support, IT/technology and transparency of commission structure.

Everyone at Merix Financial is immensely proud of the results of the Brokers on Lenders survey.  Our dedication to meeting industry needs has been acknowledged by way of the results.  Merix has finished in the top three for a number of years now and our goal is to always finish first.  By every measure we accomplished that in 2012.

Approval/loan turnaround times

It's my belief that one of the most irresponsible business expectations introduced to the industry was the notion of a four-hour turnaround.  Given mortgage balances, and the risk that is associated with any mortgage, the standard delivery response time shouldn't be just slightly higher than the time we expect a pizza to be delivered. Turnaround times should be the time it takes to undertake a comprehensive review of the application, while keeping in mind the competitive nature of the industry.  I'm delighted that our supporters recognized that we have struck the right balance between the time required to make the responsible credit decision and to respond to the timeline needs of our customers, mortgage brokers.

Underwriter Support
Winning the gold medal in this category is due in large part to our strategic partners at Paradigm Quest.   A willingness to work with customers relative to deal structure is what sets one lender apart from another, and we've made significant strides in this category over the last few years.  We have every intention of building upon that success.

Overall Service Levels
Winning the gold medal in this category is like winning a triathlon.  Excellence in many different disciplines is required to finish first in this category.  You cannot win the gold medal unless you treat the mortgage broker like a customer.

BDM Support
This has been our trade mark since inception.  The people we have in the field have been consistently rated as being in the upper echelon.  The reason for the success of our BDMs is not overly complicated: they genuinely care about the success of our customers business.  Our BDMs are authentic and that manifests itself by putting the business needs of the customer first.

Broker Support
The gold medal in this category is probably the most rewarding of all the medals we received.  To win the gold medal in this category you have to be viewed as excelling in a number of areas that brokers deem very important.  The fact that we were the gold medalists in this category means we can say, with legitimacy, we're the brokers’ advocate.

First and foremost I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your continued confidence in MCAP and taking the time to participate in this very important survey. Getting your feedback helps us focus our energies where you need us to and ensures that we provide you the services and support required to grow your business.

If you asked me what I thought were the most important components to doing business with brokers today, I would say great people and great technology. You could have the best products and the best rates in the country, but if support is lacking, rates and products become irrelevant.

In no way am I saying that these aspects of the business aren’t important – of course, they are. But if a company doesn’t take the time to make sure everything is at peak performance, no interest rate, no matter how attractive, will matter if no one likes doing business with you.

I’m really proud of our MCAP Professor site and was encouraged you voted us tops in technology. I firmly believe that technology is a key difference in how we do business with brokers compared to the other lenders you have to choose from. By optimizing the broker experience with a fast, efficient online system, we ultimately provide the optimal borrower experience that makes you look good.

Speaking of great experience, I’d like to thank each and every person who works at MCAP. The only way we continue to offer superb customer service – including quick approval and turnaround times – is through an experienced, professional team of dedicated employees. There is no one person who is more important; a coordinated team effort is what it takes to provide a seamless, positive broker experience.

So where do we go from here? Our industry has been on a roller coaster ride with housing trends all over the map and the unfortunate exit of a longstanding lender from the industry.  MCAP plans to stay focused in 2013 and continue to drive support of the broker channel as we have done for many years and plan to for many more.  We will continue to invest in our people and technology systems, always looking for new and improved ways to help your business flourish. Choice, service, advice and savings – that’s our Broker Advantage.

Bridgewater Bank:

Overall standings
We are humbled by our third place finish and we are thankful to brokers for also awarding us a top six placing in all categories. We have listened to what brokers said they needed to be successful, we have made many changes and there will be more. It’s vital to not only listen to brokers, but to really understand what they need to be successful.

Approval / loan turnaround times
Your deal is important to you and your customer, so it should be important to your lender. We believe all deals require prompt, two-way communication. Our new streamlined process helps you communicate with fewer people and lets you know exactly who to call when you need support. This increases knowledge of each deal and improves overall productivity so you’re closing more.  

Underwriter support
Bridgewater Bank employs the one-to-two ratio. We empower our underwriting team so that one underwriter can approve a deal, but it takes two to say “no.” We’re not cookie-cutter, either. We make sure you have choice in getting your deals done. Having choice gives you more options to close deals and keep your customers happy.

Overall service levels
We thank the broker community for this recognition, but that’s where the celebrating stops. We’re not resting on our laurels. We’re continuing to improve and your feedback is important. Help us make our relationship stronger. Tweet us, call us and communicate with us through the BwB All Star Broker portal.

BDM Support
You’re unique, so are the needs of your customer. Our BDMs understand they need to provide you with tailored, regional knowledge and support.  We are constantly working with our BDMs and our broker partners to evolve our support and solutions to respond to your regionally specific needs.  Our BDMs are there to support you, whether we’re collaborating on structuring a deal, sharing tips, holding face-to-face meetings, facilitating presentations or holding conference calls.  
Product Range
In a year that has seen many lenders specialize in one area or another, Bridgewater Bank remains competitive by offering brokers choices. You can’t control the types of deals that come in your door so we have created a whole range of products to meet your customers’ needs. Draw mortgages are just one example. Having an excellent product range, backed up by a knowledgable underwriting team, is proof we’re looking out for you.  

Satisfaction with credit policy
Our industry faces challenging times. With new government regulations and changes within the industry, Bridgewater Bank is trying hard to soften the impact to our partners. We have worked hard to anticipate market changes and have created policies that are clear and easy to follow. And we are backing it up with increased communication through many channels, including with underwriters and through our broker portal. We appreciate that brokers have continued to work with us through these times.  

Broker support
Bridgewater Bank knows support is key to your success. That’s why we have reviewed all of our operations to find ways we can improve our service and support levels, from the moment a deal is submitted to when it goes to servicing. We’ll continue to work hand-in-hand with our broker partners on these improvements.  

IT / Technology
As part of our continuing growth, in March 2011, we launched the BwB All Star Portal. It’s 100per cent broker focused, helping you track and manage your deals with us. The portal is a user-friendly location that brings together information and two-way communication with our dedicated underwriters, making dealing with Bridgewater Bank uncomplicated. It also improves efficiency through live status updates, condition and document management, compensation reports and volume tracking, all reducing the need for multiple phone calls, emails and faxes. The feedback on the portal has been excellent and we are proud to say brokers approve of this innovation.

Overall Standings
From outside of the top 10 to fifth place is something we at RMG are very proud of.  Being in the top five positions RMG as successful in many categories. Last year we did not score in the top ten in any category and this year we scored top 10 in every category.  This is a tribute to the hard work and dedication of our staff during the transition.  We never lost focus on servicing the mortgage broker industry in Canada and look forward to next year and improving on our results!

Approval/Turnaround Time
The RMG staff worked hard to get into the top ten this year. Our volumes are 40 per cent higher this year versus last year, so this is a great accomplishment. With the launch of our broker portal in December and technological improvements in communication to our broker partners, we’re confident that our approval and turnaround times will improve in 2013.  Brokers will have access to an on-line portal giving them vital information, up-to-date deal status on their submissions and conditions outstanding.  

Underwriting Support
RMG is investing heavily in technology and a broker portal that will assist in providing additional support for our broker partners.  We look forward to the imminent launch of the portal and believe this tool will assist us in 2013 to improve on our results for underwriting support.

Overall Service Levels
RMG is investing in technology and sales tools for 2013 that will give the staff an advantage in providing exceptional service levels going forward.  BDMs will be given modern programs and tools to assist them in communicating with their brokers, and underwriters will have the assistance of our broker portal, which we’re excited in launching for 2013.  As much as we’re proud of our fourth-place finish, for overall service levels, we are striving and investing in improving on these results and growing our customer satisfaction and market share for 2013.

Interest rates
RMG is proud that brokers consider us to be competitive on interest rates.  We allow brokers to use their commission to buy down rates in competitive situations and many brokers utilize this feature to capture deals from their competitors.  A reduced commission is always better than no commission if a deal is lost! Realizing that interest rates for insured “A” deals are important, RMG is investing in launching some products for 2013 that will help brokers compete against the bank branches for business and win the deal!

BDM Support
RMG is very proud of the work and dedication of our BDMs during the transition and re-branding in 2012.  RMG BDMs have a rich history of working with mortgage brokers and many, including our director of sales, worked as mortgage brokers in the past. To achieve a gold medal during this time of change is a huge accomplishment.  We greatly appreciate brokers recognizing our BDMs as the best in the business.  We look forward to 2013 when BDMs will be given state-of-the-art technology and leading sales tools that will assist them in maintaining this gold-medal position and growing their market share in the future!

Product range
RMG is looking forward to launching some competitive products in 2013 that we will position to help brokers navigate the ever-changing mortgage rules.  We recognize that in 2013 purchase business and transfer business will be a primary source of business for brokers, and RMG looks forward to positioning our products in a way that helps mortgage brokers grow their market share in these important business segments.

Satisfaction with credit policy
Rising from outside the top 10 to seventh in 2012 is a big accomplishment and we’re proud of.  We will continue to communicate our credit policies and any changes moving forward to ensure that brokers are educated in what RMG can do and what our policies are moving forward.

Broker Support
With 100 per cent of our business coming from mortgage brokers, we appreciate the fourth-place finish in broker support.  Keep an eye out for RMG during the 2012 National CAAMP Conference where we’ll be delivering some exciting news on broker support and what our plans are for assisting brokers in growing the amount of business they do in Canada.  With all the mortgage rule changes, RMG believes that the tougher it is to get a mortgage, the more valuable mortgage brokers will be in assisting Canadians in their dream of homeownership.  As mortgage broker market share grows, RMG will be there assisting you every step of the way!

At RMG, we believe this is a category that we can improve greatly on for 2013.  We have two major changes coming in 2013. Key among them are a broker online portal, which is being launched at the CAAMP Conference, and an innovative new sales tool for BDMs to assist brokers in growing their business with RMG.  With these two new features, we expect to move up the standings significantly in 2013.

Transparency of commission structure
RMG is very proud of the gold medal here.  As mortgages become more difficult and rate competitiveness with branches grows, a transparent commission structure is invaluable. Our commission structure is very straightforward and brokers always know how much they can make on a deal, even when they buy the rate down in competitive situations to win a deal.  RMG will continue to keep its commission structure straightforward as many of our broker partners appreciate its simplicity.

Home Trust:

We at Home Trust appreciate and thank the brokers who took the time to complete this survey and CMP for providing the opportunity.

We acknowledge our industry colleagues and congratulate them on their achievements and success. Given the changes all of us in this industry have experienced over the past year, we are all deserving of an award.

We are honoured to have been awarded a medal, especially a medal in Overall Service Levels. This indicates to us that we are providing service and support to our broker partners in all aspects of our business – before, during, and after our business transactions.    During the past year, we have added staff to our broker relations team, which supports the broker network, responding to calls and emails.   Clearly this has been well received by our broker partners.

We are proud to see that our scores year-over-year remain continuously in the area of “good” to “very good.”  Our broker partners have expressed a need for lenders to be consistent and predictable in their business.  We feel we are providing them with this in spite of the turmoil in our industry.   

We can always improve and we have noted areas on which we can focus on finding solutions to continue to elevate our valued relationship with our broker partners in the upcoming year.

National Bank of Canada:

National Bank is excited to be recognized again in the top ten of CMP’s Brokers on Lenders survey standings.

The industry has experienced significant changes in the past year and, with that being said, National Bank is grateful for the support and loyalty that brokers have shown during this past year.

For the second year in a row, we have medalled in the category of product range; this year we earned a silver ranking.  National Bank is extremely proud of this recognition, and we have all of you to thank for this.  We continuously strive to offer innovative and leading market products for all of our clients.  Our signature product, the National Bank All-In-One continues to be recognized as one of the best credit solutions, which offers our clients significant flexibility for daily transactional banking. It gives our clients the opportunity to fully integrate their financing solutions that can be customized to their specific needs.

It is important to us at National Bank to receive this feedback from the broker community so that we may continue to evolve and support the needs of our brokers in the coming years.

National Bank is committed to the broker channel; our growth over the past five years is due to the support of the brokerage community and our partners.  All of us at National Bank thank you for your loyalty and we look forward to working with all of you for many years to come.


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