Don't 'bin' unproductive referral partners, say brokers

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Brokers tempted to ditch referral partners slow to provide leads in a slowing market should re-think that, caution several industry professionals.

“All too often in this industry it’s about looking after No. 1,” said Jeremy Nagel, a broker at Verico – Canada Mortgage Direct, in Calgary. “Rather than severing relationships, I think we should try to understand how we can help our partners become more productive.”

Nagel said he understands why some brokers might see the slowing mortgage market as perfect time to get rid of non-productive referral partnerships, but suggests mortgage professionals train the microscope on their own operations.

“A partnership goes both ways,” he said. “You can’t always be in the take mode. Find out how you can give back.”

That means determining if you are offering partners adequate support or information about your business needs, he said.

Another broker suggests that re-cultivating rather than pruning is a better strategy.

“This is the time to revisit your list and find out why you’re not getting any business from some partners.” said Shawn Mooney, broker at Bayfield Mortgage Professionals in Airdrie, Alberta. “Just as with clients, very often all it takes is a follow-up call to get your referring Realtor’s engines running again.”

He said brokers should keep in regular contact with partners in order to identify stumbling blocks before they become full-blown barriers.

“I find it much better to keep communication lines open and work towards collaborative efforts,” Mooney said.

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