Call centre competing with brokers?

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One network’s plans to use a rate site to drive business to its call centres – with an eye to passing it along to its members – may be short-sighted, said one leading mortgage professional.

“If deals will be done completely through the service centre, that could mean business taken away from brokers,” said Ron Butler, of VERICO Butler Mortgage. “The brokerage profits but the brokers lose out.”

Butler was reacting to a recent announcement by mortgage and insurance rate site Kanetix pointing to its new partnership with Invis/ Mortgage Intelligence. The deal will allow Kanetix to take an online credit check and get a pre-approved rate for a rateshopper based on their eligibility. It then falls to a representative at the Invis/MI call centre to get back to them, either processing straightforward applications or referring more complex deals to mortgage professionals at the broker network.

Invis said it expects to close only 5 per cent to 10 per cent of online queries through the call centres alone. The rest should, said CEO Bob Ord, get channelled through to brokers.

“We will be focusing strictly on triple A clients with high credit score ratings,” he said. “Ninety per cent of the applicants will not meet this criterion so they will be passed on to our brokers.”

Still, online originations that stay with the call centre may well be larger than the figures Invis execs think will occur, said Butler, who also uses a rate site to generate leads.

“I get about 20 leads a day from RateSupermarket and as much as 65 per cent of them are no-fuss Triple-A leads,” he said.

  • Bill Jones on 2012-10-27 3:36:02 AM

    Why is this even "NEWS"? Ron Butler seems to get a lot of press on this site - good for him I guess. What does Ron expect to gain by saying this? Does he really care about Invis/MI brokers or is he just trying to stir the pot? Me thinks the latter. At least he had the decencey to disclose his real name, unlike "BC Broker" on the previous related thread.

  • Ron Butler on 2012-10-27 6:01:35 AM

    Bill, I know a few INVIS / MI brokers and they are smart people that can cetainly take care of themselves and make their own decisions. My point is simply that on the face of it; any statement that 90% of rate comparison site leads will have some impairments and problems that require a mortgage broker to figure out a solution to complicated file is simply not my experience. In fact my experience is the opposite. There are a ton of problems in dealing with rate site leads but qualification for a mortgage is rarely one of those problems.

  • Paolo Di Petta | on 2012-10-27 7:00:46 AM

    This just reinforces the need for an industry wide push away from rate-peddling. As agents and brokers our unique selling proposition is our service, our expertise and our relationships. We need to stop participating in the race to the bottom and instead focus on how we add value.

    The more we try to play their game, the more we lose. Stop validating their commoditization of the industry. The more we try to compete in that space, the more it appears that we acknowledge that rate is the only important thing.

    Will Kanetix take a chunk out of the market? Sure. But rate sites have been around for a long time and the good brokers/agents are still keeping busy. That's because they push their added value, not their rate.

    The way I see it is that for every minute that I don't spend on someone who's ONLY rate-focused, I'm wasting a minute that could be used for a loyal client who needs and appreciates my expertise.

  • Paolo Di Petta | on 2012-10-27 7:17:26 AM

    edit - I meant to say "The way I see it is that for every minute that I spend on someone who's ONLY rate-focused, I'm wasting a minute that could be used for a loyal client who needs and appreciates my expertise."

  • Robert Stanfield, Invis agent on 2012-10-27 7:43:00 AM

    This is nothing personal against Ron Butler as I do not know who he is. My question is the following, why was Ron Butler asked for a comment and not an Invis/MI agent???? I find the author "Nestor Arellano" to be lazy considering he didn't seek out an Invis/MI agent (or 2 or 3) for comment before writing an article about something that directly effects Invis/MI agents. I have found lately that there does not seem to be a lot of positive articles being written on this site, and the depth of information obtained before the articles have been written seems fairly weak also. Better information gathering and reporting is required, not just on this article, but most articles posted on this site. It is becoming to negative.

  • Derek Rowley, RMA on 2012-10-27 1:34:40 PM

    Re: Nestor

    Mr. Stanfield,

    Before you call Nestor "lazy", maybe you should call him first and have a discussion with him. Then you will find out that he is actually the opposite. Talented, hard working and genuine. Sure they have negative articles but there have a lot of interesting articles and not to mention article that stir the pot. Like Invis who has a diversified number of agents, so does Nestor's articles. Just as you do your job to the best of your ability and as a professionl Invis Agent,Nestor does the same, so give the man a break.

    Hey Nestor, keep up the good work buddy. You have my vote.

    Derek Rowley

  • John Dearin RPA,. AMP. on 2012-10-31 12:37:56 AM

    Yep this is side tracking the thread but I have had a number of calls with Nestor, he digs for information. I agree with Derek Rowley, RMA, keep up the good work Nestor, AND Vernon, let`s not forget Vernon

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