Broker gets creative with lead chase

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Ever-tightening regulations and ever-increasing competition from the banks are forcing the broker industry to get more creative when trying to chase leads and build business; which, for one broker, includes sharing leads with those in an industry he originally had an aversion to.

“I used to think real estate people were a pain in the butt because they are extremely demanding (and that) they’re only concerned with one thing and that’s their commission,” John Van Driel of Mortgage Shopper told “I’m finding myself now with relationships with six or seven realtors and I go out and do that in a variety of ways; usually I get referred or I’ll have to know the managing broker at an office and I’ll explain to them that I do business a certain way and I’d like to do business with some of their, quote, ‘more honest individuals’ and they usually recommend one or two of their people.”

It’s no surprise that mortgage brokers are being forced to find new referral streams, with recent CMHC data pointing to an 81 per cent drop in refinance business and banks gobbling a bigger piece of the refi pie.

“On the refinance side, banks are becoming more and more aggressive and they send renewal documents out with rates that sometimes I can’t compete with,” Van Driel said. “It’s brutal. I’m pretty sure a lot of brokers outside my area are finding the same thing.”

And of course, mortgage rule changes and tightenend lending requirements aren’t making the broker’s job any easier.

“It seems to me that our government and the people that regulate interest rates and regulate the way that we get mortgages approved are going to get more more and tighter,” Van Driel said. “They’ve probably already knocked the bottom 10 per cent of the market out and when I say that I mean first-time buyers and younger folk and people who don’t have very much in savings.”

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  • Ed Novak on 2014-01-10 9:07:09 AM

    I am disgusted! Van Driel thinks that all real estate agents do is think about their commissions. In the meantime, he is the "saint" who doens't think about his commission AT ALL. He is in this business to offer charity. Ha! And what does he mean when he says that he asks a real estate brokerage for the "more honest agents". If a real estate brokerage has dishonest agents, they will be out of business and probably in jail quite quickly. This is simply nonsense! If that is his attitude towards realtors, I would NEVER offer this guy leads. I work with mortgage brokers and offer them leads without EVER asking for ANYTHING in return. My main concern is getting my deal done in a proper and legitimate way, and that includes helping my clients get financing quickly and ligitimately. I used to have a mortgage broker license too but gave that up. What's the point? I would rather have a dedicated PROFESSIONAL deal with this. I have my doubts that Van Driel would ever be that person.

  • Elfie Hayes on 2014-01-10 8:11:37 PM

    How about we try a whole new strategy for staying in business.

    Lets try working our existing Database, creating relationships where both parties share referrals because they respect each other, maybe even promote ourselves through Social Media.

    Then the most far out concept of all. Stop listening to all the negative things in the news.

    Every challenge provides an opportunity! Tightening of rules made Mortgage Brokers more valuable to the public, provided they had relationships with alt-A lenders . Build those relationships!

    Stop listening to rumblings of a collapsing housing market. We have been hearing that for years and still all sales were up in volume and price in 2013.

    Stop hanging around with the doomsayers, they poison your positive thoughts.

    Create a solid business plan and follow it!
    and for goodness sake don't believe you have to slash your financial wrists by discounting every transaction.

    I grew a business of one to a team of 11 in the past 5 years when the economy collapsed and "Jimmy" the Minister of Finance threw us under the bus.

    How you might wonder??

    Decide what you want, do it until you succeed. Surround yourself with the right people, get the right tools and never take your eye off your business plan!

    Sorry My Van Driel, I'm a successful ex-realtor and a 14 year veteran of the mortgage industry your comments made me hot under the collar!

  • Jon Nelson on 2014-03-05 10:58:38 AM

    With this attitude I am surprised anyone is referring clients to him. I sure wouldn't, even if he thought I was "one of the more honest ones." He is just breathtakingly arrogant.
    I would never recommend a client to work with someone who is this condescending. What does he say about the agent behind his or her back once they have referred a client to him? How long does it take for his contempt for real estate agents to shine through. No thank you Mr. Van Driel, you are one toxic dude.

  • Paul Therien - CENTUM on 2014-03-05 6:12:13 PM

    Broker and Realtors need to work together, and both parties should always be Looking out for the best interest of their clients. There is a real benefit for the consumer when you have two professionals working together to help you find that perfect home - because that is exactly what a good team (Realtor and Broker) do - the Realtor finds the house, the Broker sources the money to purchase the house.

    This cross industry "bashing" doesn't help to better the consumer experience - at all.

Broker news forum is the place for positive industry interaction and welcomes your professional and informed opinion.

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