Mortgage Revolution addresses need for bank 'specialist' regulation

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The Mortgage Revolution is gaining momentum, with the man behind the grassroots campaign pointing to a Calgary meeting bringing together mortgage professionals and lenders to address industry shortcomings and challenges.

“We had a full house of mortgage brokers who truly care about our ‘channel’ and want to make a difference,” said Axiom Mortgage Solutions CEO Mike Cameron, pointing to the July 19 meeting. “As brokers, we need to take responsibility for our distribution channel. The key message from the sessions was that ‘It all starts with you’, and ‘It’s time to speak up and start talking about the issues’ and ‘It’s time to say no more.’”

That event, the second in what Cameron has dubbed The Mortgage Revolution , mirrored the first with its candid conversation on ethical and integrity challenges facing brokers. More specifically, speakers like past AMBA president Gary Siegle explored the need to move beyond selling rate, while others voiced concerns about accountability and the need for greater communication between competing brokers.

Discussion also touched on the importance of lobbying for the regulation of bank mortgage specialists, said Cameron.

“This one came up and RECA conceded that this is on their radar, and there will be a discussion paper coming out on this issue,” he said. “My understanding is that legislation needs to change for this to happen, but it appears we are making an impact.”

Brokers also bandied about the idea of developing a marketing fund to create better consumer awareness about mortgage professionals.

“We discussed the possibility of taking one basis point per deal to allocate to a broker awareness campaign,” said Cameron. “I think it is a positive concept but we need to improve the product before we advertise it.”

The Calgary discussion, which drew Street Capital’s Paul Grewal and AMBA President Paul Bojakli, helped steel Alberta brokers now grappling with an increasingly competitive market and fears of a price correction like that experienced in 2007/8. Values have yet to bounce back to pre-recession levels, something that may have exacerbated integrity and ethical lapses, argue some brokers.

“We ‘the good guys’ need to band together and say ‘there’s no room for unethical behaviour in our industry,’” Cameron said.

  • S Ont Broker on 2011-08-03 3:58:49 AM

    "Mortgage Specialist" now there's an oxymoron ! How can any individual be a peaicalst when you offer one banks products. Better word might be "Order Taker" ! To ur understand the TD's and the RBC's are loosing market share - so their answer is higher more road warriors ! Please do as the more you hire, the more they screw up and the more deals for the quality brokers in the neighbourhood. Key word here "Quality" and not the fly by nites or the ones 2 -3 years in biz !

  • Crystal Lucuik - Centum Professional Mortgage Grou on 2011-08-03 4:07:07 AM

    Unfortunately, I can't see the banks ever conceding to regulation of their mortgage specialists. They have the funds and resources to ensure this never happens. I think it's irrelevant considering the specialists are employees of the financial institutions. How they are regulated is completely internal to the individual banks.

    The focus of our industry should not be on how to control or regulate employees of the banks, but how we can better serve our client base and continue to educate the public on the benefits of our services.

  • Chad on 2011-08-03 4:31:34 AM

    This is what CAAMP should be doing. I think we all need to put some pressure on them. They have the budget and power to lobby this but as members we need to push them to regulate the banks.

  • Angela on 2011-08-03 4:38:03 AM

    I agree with Chad, this is the responsibility for CAAMP to lobby for its members.

  • @kiltedbroker on 2011-08-03 5:16:58 AM

    I was in Calgary and attended the Mortgage Revolution, I think it was definitely a step in the right direction for the broker channel. I am excited to see where this goes! I want to see the broker channel take market share from the bank, but we can only do that if we have quality brokers doing quality business.

  • Ottawa Broker on 2011-08-03 5:17:35 AM

    Why would we pay 1bp per deal fo a marketing fund?? It is an great idea, but should that not be the responsability of CAAMP?? You look at the insurance brokers industry and their governing body does a great job of advertising for the insuranc ebrokers. WHY DOES CAAMP NOT DO IT FOR US??? Everything we are dealing with right now in our industry should be dealt with by CAAMP, not by individual brokers forming committee's to address issues. Thanks to those brokers, but they should not have to do it, our governing body should.

  • Michael Cameron on 2011-08-03 5:49:08 AM

    The Mortgage Revolution is about improving our 'Channel'. CAAMP represents our industry. It is a subtle but key distinction. Type in the word 'Bank' in the CAAMP company search under Find a Member and you tell me if CAAMP is going to be the one to represent our Channel. I am not opposed to it but it doesn't seem to be happening. I believe that CAAMP needs to narrow it's focus. CAAMP cannot be all things to all people. A RBC rep with an AMP should not the same as a veteran broker with an AMP, yet today it is.

    I am extremely passionate about our channel and want to see it thrive and survive. If CAAMP is the one to do that I will support 1000%, but I am tired of hearing "Why aren't THEY doing this or that". It is time to make some change. Why aren't YOU doing something. You are the membership, demand change. If it doesn't happen, vote with your feet.

    Join the discussion at The bottom line is I care and it doesn't really matter "who" does it but "something" needs to be done.

  • DP on 2011-08-03 8:27:49 AM

    Keep it down. Your using the four-letter word too much.
    B - A - N - K
    Talk about Power!?Control?!Policy!?Regulation?!

  • Jeremy on 2011-08-03 11:39:56 PM

    I too agree with Chad, CAAMP should be doing something on behalf of its membership. I say we all band together and stop paying our CAAMP dues and then maybe, just maybe they will listen. In fact, I challenge each and every one of you to cancel your CAAMP membership to send them a message. On with the Revolution!

  • Ann on 2011-08-04 3:16:55 AM

    Jeremy, most errors & omissions policies require CAAMP membership. I'm certainly not about to cancel as it would jeopardize my insurance. Many brokers & agents operate without it, so could cancel their CAAMP membership, but I don't think that's the solution. We need to be more vocal & tell CAAMP how we want our membership money spent. I have no idea why I'm sent a paper magazine each month when I could get the same thing via email. CAAMP could divert those funds to advertising & generate a positive image for brokers & agents.

  • Ann on 2011-08-04 3:19:32 AM

    Canceling CAAMP membership isn't the answer, especially if it jeopardizes your E&O insurance. We need to be vocal about how we want CAAMP to spend our money & represent us. The insurance industry is a decade ahead of us (maybe two) and we should be taking our cues from them.

  • Chad on 2011-08-04 3:32:10 AM

    Email your CAAMP rep let them know you want them to focus on this. The organization is run by the members for the members. Also join your provincial ones as well such as IMBA, AMBA etc.

    I get tired of hearing agents whine and say what do they do for me and then turn around to say ..but they should have done something. Our industry associations cannot operate without money. The money needs to come from us as brokers or the banks. You take care of the people that pay you.

    If we pay to run the organizations they will look out for best interest. If the banks pay the tab then will look out for theirs...

    Now here is a really crazy thought. IT is not us vs them. This is a partnership. If we all stopped this race to the bottom on rates, flipping deals, fighting at renewal, etc the industry would be a better place.

    To the lenders watching, pay trailers, give us access to more products to make the channel more profitable for you. Why do we not have ING savings accounts, GICS, LOCs from the banks, car loans etc. These are all services that the banks earn a ton of money from yet they focus solely on the mortgage. The one product with the smallest margin.

    Open the product suite hence spread out the cost of acquiring the client.

    Just a crazy thought on Wednesday afternoon.

  • John Dearin on 2011-08-04 7:53:36 AM

    Chad!! I have in the past fired off notes to Home Trust, TD and I never received a reply. I am now doing the same with ING. Our brokerage is very capable of handling additional business like setting up bank accounts, car loans/ LOC's etc. I was willing to work towards any licencing requirements to sell GIC's and other investments. Maybe ING would post here why this is not offered to even select brokerages. Regulations maybe? It would certainly put us on an even keel with the bricks and mortar banks. And add substantially to our income. I don't see it happening though.

    PS E&OE insurance is available from outside CAAMP. a few more $$ a year, but it is available from most insurance brokers.

    I don't see leaving CAAMP myself, but I agree that they need to take a long hard look at themselves and their policies.

  • Jeremy on 2011-08-04 10:46:52 AM

    Re: Ann

    I would advocate foregoing E&O insurance but I can tell for certain that there are e&o companies that do not require CAAMP membership and the cost of insurance is the same.

    I don't know about you, but I have been very vocal and CAAMP doesn't care. And so long as members continue to pay, why would they? If we cancel our membership, they will listen, trust me! They won't your dollar, my dollar, and anyone with a heartbeat who can pay, unfortunately.


  • Michael Cameron on 2011-08-05 1:59:29 AM

    Great discussion. E & O is not optional it is mandatory in my opinion (as well as some regulators). That said, the provincial associations have some good E & O plans. That cannot be the only reason to belong to a professional organization. Demand more.

  • Jeremy on 2011-08-06 3:30:41 AM

    Oops, I meant to say I wouldn't advocate foregoing E&O. I agree with Mike, E&O should be mandatory.

    Have a great weekend everyone!

  • Gunther Kaschuba on 2011-08-06 4:09:01 AM

    How is a bank road rep/mobile specialist any different than a mortgage agent? How is a bank rep with an office in a real estate office any different than a mortgage agent/broker. The fact that they are employees of the bank should not exempt them from some form of regulation or license. CAAMP will never be able to resolve this issue as bank members carry too much clout within the organization. We as brokers (in Ontario) should be standing behind IMBA to push this issue forward. It is also our responsibility to educate the public. Tough to do individually but perhaps we could create a joint advertizing fund to persue this issue, since the AMP adds are not doing the job

  • Michael Cameron on 2011-08-06 4:57:46 PM

    Hey Gunther, appreciate your comments. The reality is we are not going to win this at a regulatory level. We simply have to be the best at what we do for the Canadian consumer. Be better.

    Mediocre is not an option, accept nothing less than stellar.

  • su on 2011-08-06 6:43:22 PM

    It is great discussion.
    CAAMP have to work for us, If they are not, so why we join them and pay to them? Our pay is just for their control?
    Fsco, As government regulation maker,Do they understand mortgage industry? Do they know how are mortgage brokers or agents save money for Government? The mortgage industry does not need any cost from government, but how many job opportunity mortgage broker channel offer to the society.

    Bank why always not trust broker Channel, Sure, some broker made some wrong, so we need regulation. but that is main reason they want to leave broker channel, the really reason is many bank they are control by some traditional bank branch Channel, They do not like broker when they were working in branch as regular staff.

    Mortgage broker channel need justice,CAAMP, IMBA need work for us, Government need work for us, all broker need give the voice

  • Bob W on 2011-08-09 1:05:14 AM

    Belonging to CAAMP in order to obtain cost effective E&O Insurance might be part of why some of you belong... but that had better not be the only reason! We sourced our own E&O Insurance from a third party listed from the FSCO Web site for acceptable E&O Insurance providers and are paying SIGNIFICANTLY LESS than what we found through both CAAMP & IMBA. We are still members of both organizations and I feel it is time for them to understand our need to educate consumers about who we are. To be fair to CAAMP we need to send them a clear message (not an AMP message) because right now I feel their hands are tied serving two masters'.

  • SS on 2011-08-10 8:05:16 AM

    There is certainly some good discussion happening here and I think the Mortgage Revolution is right on target of what is happening in the mortgage brokerage industry. Change is inevitable and it is time that all the Associations started working together. I know this is happening with the provincial associations but the national association wants to be all and do all for the whole industry and if this is the case they don't have time to do the work that their membership wants them to do...focus on national issues, the provincial associations have strongly advocated CAAMP to take on the position of cooperation and strategically work with the provincial associations for the purpose of the Canadian Mortgage Brokerage industry. Imagine what could happen with cooperation??? A national mortgage broker campaign, higher standards for education, quality practioners, which will ulitmately create a professional industry...the confidence consumers would have in the industry would far exceed the market share of today.

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