It may be a reflection of just how fluid times are for brokers, with the country’s largest provincial association extending the term of a sitting president by another 12 months.
“It allows us to complete what we started,” said Albert Collu, president of the Independent Mortgage Brokers Association of Ontario. “It’s an exception made by the board.”
Collu, also head of broker network Argentum Mortgage and Finance Corp., has already begun that second term of sorts, starting April.
During his first 12 months, he extended the organization’s reach both east and west, developing stronger partnerships with other provincial associations.
Those ties are helping deepen the value-add for brokers, in terms of an education and training exchange, say members of both IMBA and its Alberta counterpart AMBA.
Collu, along with his association’s executive director, Joe Rosati, spearheaded an expanded IMBA conference this year, also seen as a way of better connecting broker members with lenders and service providers as the industry gears up for another year of intense competition with banks outside the channel.
Part of that broker preparation has to be minimizing internal friction between brokerages, he told conference-goers in April.
“It is possible to be competitors, but still be on the same team,” said Collu, also pushing for greater promotion of the industry to consumers. In fact, he and another Ontario broker were recently profiled in a Toronto Star article outlining the pros and cons of dealing with mortgage professionals.
“We have done a horrible job of educating consumers about what it is we do,” he said. “We are all talking, but not moving forward.”