One of four course providers for Ontario re-licensing is reporting very “brisk” registration – suggesting brokers are moving sooner rather than later to meet that mandatory requirement.
That's even as FSCO identifies 10 per cent to 15 per cent of licensed agents as no longer authorized to sell.
“We have had a very positive response from brokers since launching the program in November,” said Joe Rosati, executive director of IMBA. “Registration has been brisk for our online, in-class and our self-facilitated in group programs. The expectation is that a large number of brokers and agents will take advantage of the down-time over the holidays to begin or finish the course, well ahead of the March 31 deadline.”
The assessment comes the same week the provincial regulator identified as much as 10 per cent to 15 per cent of the province's 9,000-plus licensed agents as no longer working at a brokerage and, therefore, unauthorized to sell mortgages, said Rosati.
Those mortgage professionals have likely abandoned the business in the more than 21 months since the 2010 renewal period or have taken up administrative or management positions within the industry, he told MortgageBrokerNews.ca.
Either way, that group’s sheer size is likely the strongest indication to date that Ontario may lose as much as 10 per cent to 15 per cent of its registered mortgage professionals.
The figure jives with the estimates of other industry leaders.
“In the last license renewal period in March 2010, 15 per cent of Ontario licensees – agents and brokers – did not renew their license,” CAAMP CEO Jim Murphy told MortgageBrokerNews.ca. “In the 18 months since ….They have made up for the 15 per cent loss. Brokers and agents in Ontario this time must also take a re-licensing course, which they did not have to do last time (and) my guess would be (the loss could be) 10 per cent to 15 per cent.”
That kind of chop would likely result from discouraged and inactive brokers opting to exit the business rather than submit to new education requirements introduced this year and taking effect next March. That significant percentage may reflect that phenomenon.
Come April 1, 2012, brokers and agents must have proven they’ve completed a re-licensing course, designed to improve compliance with provincial laws.
The education requirement also brings Ontario professionals in line with their counterparts in Alberta and British Columbia, who already submit to similar education mandates as a condition for licensing.