Brokers know there is a problem with a lack of training among agents, but it is time they took the lead and instituted a universal in-house training program, says one principal broker.
“There needs to be a course or a training program, a real tough one,” says David Alberda, broker managing-partner with Ultimate Mortgage Partners in Calgary. “Agents know the technical side of the business – anyone can submit a deal. But it is the human dynamic, the emotions of a client that need to be learned. The client is in a high-stress situation purchasing a home, and the only way you learn as a broker is to do real sales training with an experienced broker.”
Alberda shares the frustration among his peers in the broker channel at the lack of real training for agents entering the industry, but would like to see some action taken instead of just more griping.
“There needs to be some sort of regulation from one of the regulatory bodies, whether it is national or provincial. It’s the only real way to try and control this, because the way things are now, it looks bad on all of us,” he says. “I saw the tweets and postings online complaining of the lack of training of agents. But nobody ever comes up with a solution for the problem.”
In an earlier article on MortgageBrokerNews.ca, Principal Broker Paul Mangion of The Mortgage Centre MortgageOne Solutions estimated that “probably 75 per cent of brokerages are operated by unsuccessful mortgage professionals,” laying most of the blame at the feet of FSCO for lax standards, suggesting that “if you really want to protect the consumer, get stricter on who can open a brokerage.”
Mangion said that there’s simply insufficient screening of individuals coming into the broker channel, where only their knowledge of product is tested, not their aptitude or passion for the job.
“Some brokers just are not equipped to take them on,” agrees Alberda. “And when they do there is no training or support. The bar needs to be raised, and newcomers need a chance.”
Alberda suggests brokerages that have successful training programs be held up as examples to follow – eventually sharing their techniques with others nationwide under certification from a body like CAAMP.
“Most brokerages have CAAMP membership, and CAAMP offers the basic training now – these brokerages could be certified to train under some sort of apprenticeship program,” says Alberda.
Alberda gives the example of one agent currently working at Ultimate Mortgage Partners as to how training should be done.
“We hired her on as an assistant, and she began with the filing and we then helped her get her license,” he says. “She still does the filing, but will accompany a broker out on deals and learn how it is done. Is it hand holding? Absolutely; but it has to be done.”