Hall of Famer: Brokers, don't get distracted

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Talk of a possible recession, more lender losses and collateral charges have distracted brokers from the urgent “business” before them, said the head of one of the country’s largest networks, identifying a need for better client servicing.

“There’s a huge discrepancy between what clients think about the service they get from brokers and what brokers think they’re giving,” Michael Beckette, Mortgage Alliance president and CEO, told MortgageBrokerNews.ca. “We have to take the emphasis off of client retention and put it on building client relationships.”

The comments come as agents and brokers across the channel grapple with the loss of another lender – the fourth this year – and a market expected to further cool as Canadians become increasingly cautious about taking on new debt ahead of possible recession.

Those market factors, are simply outside the control of brokers, said Beckette, named to the Canadian Mortgage Hall of Fame this year and one of the founding partners of an organization with more than 2,000 mortgage professionals.

“No matter what the market does,” he said, “we have a job to perform. The fact is consumers like to deal with brokers, but once we get better at customer service, we are going to compete for their business at a whole different level. That should also lead to more strategic relationships with the lenders we deal with.” 

A new report on client/broker relationships is backing up Beckette.

When it comes to communicating with clients, brokers still have some work to do, Maritz Managing Director Rob Daniel said at last month’s CAAMP Forum, pointing to the survey polling consumers and brokers, along with other industry participants.

According to the report, clients were most receptive to brokers who reached out to them four to six times per year, yet 67 per cent of mortgage holders said they received less than two communications per year from their broker and just nine per cent of brokers are touching base four to six times per year.

“Brokers are great at closing deals, but not as good at communicating with clients,” said Daniel.

While Beckette agrees, he’s just as quick to point out the many exceptions. The hope is the majority of brokers will follow their lead, he said.

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