ING Direct moving to cease broker originations

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For some brokers, it reads like a "Dear John" letter, but on Wednesday, ING Direct announced it will cease accepting new applications from brokers on Feb. 16, at the same time recommending its new parent company Scotia to mortgage professionals.

"I wish to share with you some important news regarding the future of ING DIRECT’s mortgage business," writes Kim Luxton, director of broker sales for ING Direct Canada, in a letter to brokers. "Following the recent acquisition of ING DIRECT by Scotiabank we have completed a thorough evaluation of our mortgage business and have come to the decision that ING DIRECT will concentrate its origination efforts on its DIRECT channel and transition its broker business to Scotiabank."

The news has come as a shock to some brokers.

"It is sad to see a great lender leave the space," said Chad Robinson, owner of Verico Best Interest Mortgages. "ING has a been a great partner over the last decade."

Still, others are viewing Wednesday's announcement as the other shoe they've been waiting to drop since Scotia announced it would buy the upstart lender. At least one high-volume broker with ING told that he started to wean himself off of the lender in November.

Regardless, Luxton is billing the decision as a way of streamlining the operation.

"We determined through our review that there was considerable overlap between Scotiabank’s and ING DIRECT’s broker businesses in terms of broker partnerships and product offering," she writes. "We felt that both ING DIRECT’s and Scotiabank’s objectives would be better served by allowing each entity to focus its efforts on its own relative strengths."

Additionally,  she tells brokers, the organization is confident "Scotiabank has the capacity to meet your needs and your clients’ needs, providing you with the level of service you have become accustomed to with ING DIRECT."

Luxton is also reiterating Scotia's commit to the channel that ING is now preparing to leave.

As it makes that transition, she says, "We will continue to accept new mortgage and HELOC applications up to 8:00 pm EST on February 16, 2013."

Also, effective immediately, ING Direct will no longer accept new rate holds and new pre-approvals, although they will honour existing 30-day rate hold certificates up until their expiry date.

  • Joe the Broker on 2013-01-17 8:29:57 AM

    Writing was on the wall when Scotia bought them....

  • Another Broker on 2013-01-17 8:33:15 AM

    I kinda figured this would be the next move. With Scotia only allowing select broker agents to submit, I guess that's how they can have the capacity to meet the client's needs.

  • Paolo Di Petta | on 2013-01-17 9:12:52 AM

    In the end, it doesn't tend to matter. Lender options are always in flux, and that's where us brokers/agents provide value. We do all the legwork so our clients don't have to.

  • Ontario Broker on 2013-01-17 9:25:56 AM

    A No News Item.We knew they were "dead'. It was just a matter of setting a the date for the "funeral". Anybody giving odds as to who is next to leave the broker channel? A green or a blue bank?

  • Don C on 2013-01-17 9:49:27 AM

    Does this mean the "Save your money" guy is out of work?

  • Liz on 2013-01-17 2:50:27 PM

    I have to say I am a little disappointed in the comments above. Some really great people are losing their jobs here. People that have worked hard and looked after us for several years now. I find the comments to be a little cavalier. Anytime we lose an FI, it is a loss all the same. ING had a very unique value propostition which is a shame to lose. And Don the "save your money" guy hasn't been around for a good couple years. keep up.

  • Paolo Di Petta | on 2013-01-17 4:02:42 PM

    @Liz, sure it's terrible that some great people have lost their jobs, but there's not much we can do on the broker end about it. Best of luck to all of them finding other jobs in the industry!

    (and like I said, they probably will - someone new will come to fill in that space soon.)

  • @mortgagepro10 on 2013-01-17 4:26:35 PM

    Totally agree with Liz. 7th largest lender volume in the broker space. Unique product options, marketing and brand, 25% per-payment privileges etc. Regardless of whether the "writing was on the wall" or not, our channel and value proposition/product offering just became a little more vanilla, little more boring and narrower than it was at start of the day. I've personally won deals from big 5 with the 25% pre-payments alone. Not a great day here folks. Hopefully for ING staff etc. job loss will be minimal.

  • Ron Butler on 2013-01-18 4:11:37 AM

    Liz is right on the money, let's take a moment to thanks a great sales team and super group of underwriters, managers, document folks and funders who did such a great job for so long.

    I am sure they have a lot on their minds today.

  • Paul Therien - CENTUM on 2013-01-18 10:13:01 AM

    ING has been a great partner to the broker industry in Canada, and it is sad to see this transition happen - even though it makes sense on many strategic fronts for both Scotia and the ING Brand. The sales team, and everyone who is a part of ING, have been great and excelled at their roles. Both Scotia and ING have said that they will work diligently to place the team in new roles, and knowing the caliber of the executive teams, I trust that they will work very hard to make sure that all ING people affected will be well taken care of.

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