Brokers respond to claim their business is ‘dirty’

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A bank road rep tell-all has brokers’ backs up after he suggested the channel’s deals are “dirtier” than those funded on the bank side. But at least one lender has come to the aid of his channel player partners.

“I run a private lending company that deals only through Brokers. Brokers are not dirty, but they definitely are not afraid to get down and dirty,” one commenter wrote on “No cookie cutter deals in my business. Brokers who structure private deals roll up their sleeves every day to find workable financing solutions for their clients. This is the kind of partnership I value.”

Several brokers responded to the claim that their deals are held in lower regard than those done by the banks, with many pointing to the pride they take in getting deals done for Alt-A business that some of the larger institutions won’t touch.

“The majority of my business is clean, bankable, business. They just prefer to work with someone that has the expertise to recommend more than one lender to them,” Jim Thornton of Real Mortgage Associations wrote on MBN. “Then, there are the clients that fall outside of the bankable-box because maybe they own four rental properties and the bank will only allow you to have three. How does doing that deal make you ‘a little dirty’?”

The comments were in response to a story entitled 8 secrets road reps told MBN, in which one anonymous high-funding CIBC rep suggested brokers lack the prestige enjoyed by bankers.

“Many road reps who go over to the broker channel often come back to the bank,” said the source, “and it’s not because they can’t make it without a big bank name behind them. No, it’s because the deals that come to them as brokers aren’t generally of the quality that we see in the bank, and doing the broker deals can make you feel a little dirty. The prestige isn’t there.”
  • Ottawa Broker on 2015-04-01 11:43:33 AM

    The bank road reps that become brokers and then go back to the bank normally do so because they are not smart enough to place a deal that is not a cookie cutter deal. Plus they realize without their bank feeding them business they are not as good as the thought they were and they have to go back to the shelter of the bank so they can squeak out a modest income. It has been proven for over 20 years, if any bank employee is any good, they leave for the private sector as either a financial advisor or a mortgage broker. If they can't cut it in the private sector it is normally because they weren't as good as they thought they were.

  • Tony on 2015-04-01 11:48:14 AM

    That is a silly, uneducated and unprofessional comment from the bank rep. Sounds more like 'road' rage to me.

  • Chris on 2015-04-01 11:56:59 AM

    Bank road reps are unhappy with the low pay they receive per deal vs brokers. Although, many bank road rep have to clock the same mileage brokers do.. I believe this guys comments were just sour grapes.

  • Guillermo on 2015-04-01 12:02:33 PM

    Brokers dirty? Coming from a banker, that's a joke. I'm sure every broker/agent in this business for any length of time has scratched his/her head trying to figure out how a banker got a deal done when the client clearly didn't meet the bank's or insurer's guidelines. The difference between brokers and bankers is that, if the deal is doable, we place it with a prime lender if it belongs there, a sub-prime lender or we coach the client on how to qualify in the future, if possible. Contrast that to bankers (some not all) who will push the deal that really doesn't qualify through because bankers have the luxury of not being scrutinized as much as we are. We don't have the luxury turning in incomplete files or files where some of the documents are sketchy.

  • Old Broker on 2015-04-01 12:13:38 PM

    The bank road rep obviously does not know how to do any kind of deal outside of the narrow AAA ban lending that does not require a lot of thought or experience. We're the guys who help those people who may have gone through a rough period and banks won't help, even though they couldn't give them enough credit when times were better. This RBC guy could never make it in the real world of finance.

  • EX-BANKER (20+ yrs), 13yr. Mtge. Agent on 2015-04-01 2:22:31 PM

    Being an ex-banker I've seen the banks put through deals that didn't fit the banks criteria at all. Paper was left out, ignored, etc. Why? Because at the branch (the branch manager could). Because even the Broker Side of the bank declined the same deal. Besides they were making money!!! And as long as they were making money, everyone upstairs didn't care to ask how that money was being made. Did anyone really look at all those past "HUGE FRAUDS" (most of them done right at the banks, not broker deals) !!! As a broker, we are under much more scrutiny (paper wise). We work a hell of a lot harder to put our deals together (they aren't cookie cutter). Our clients need real creative (not illegal) smart, talented financial people working those deals to pull them out of the fire, and come up with a plan to get them back on their feet. The banks don't do that. They slap the application into the computer, push a button or two, and say yes or no. Because the computer spits out an approval or a decline. We work our deals every which way from Sunday to find a solution! So, I say, HELL of a LOT MORE PRESTIGE !!!!

  • Nikki Taddeo on 2015-04-01 3:03:37 PM

    DON'T GET ME STARTED. I've been a Mortgage Agent for 16 years.... and was a previous Banker for 23. I can tell you now, and I can tell you 10 years from now, BANKERS do things that we, as Agents, as Brokers would/could never do. Scratch my head many times trying to figure out how a branch/bank squeezed a deal through. Believe me, I've seen it many times in my 16 years.... so Road Rep, Branch Rep, whatever.... they do whatever they want sometimes. We are more regulated than the banks are. Plus, if you work for a bank and get fired for one reason or another, you simply work for another bank. In our industry, no way that will happen!. You are red-flagged, and everyone knows what you have done wrong. Small industry.... for the elite only!... I love my profession and am proud of it!

  • Ryan on 2015-04-01 6:41:20 PM

    Lol, a bank rep calling brokers dirty, now that's funny. In reality, more Canadians should utilize brokers as they have more options to chose from when working with a broker. Brokers can offer the best solution from a bunch of lenders unlike a bank rep that can only offer the "best" solution from their bank (aka employer).

  • Jesse D on 2015-04-02 8:18:57 AM

    Prestige working for a bank...CIBC! Joke! CIBC doesn't even train their teams. I worked at a bank and the way they jam insurance down our throats and that of our clients, they should be ashamed. Most bank reps fail in the broker world because first, they only know 1 lender whereas we know most and second, they are lost sheep tending to target the turn downs versus continuing to target the same business they are used to. Can also blame their brokers for not directing them. Prestige is not in the company name but in knowing what you are doing, being an expert which banks cannot be, helping your clients and doing what is in the best interest of your client; whether that is taking them to a bank or a private lender. By the way, when I worked at the bank, I saw more fraud then I do in the broker world. The banks just cover it up better.

  • Tammy on 2015-04-03 6:32:59 PM

    Prestige in the broker world? I've seen high school drop out former security guards take a ridiculous online course and hang the "mortgage broker" sign. Advising the public about their largest asset (and largest debt) when they themselves have never owned a home & the only thing they know about finances is how to use an ATM for their overdrawn chequing account.

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