New rate site created by industry player

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There is a new rate site in town and -- brace yourself, brokers – this one was created by one of your fellow brokers. Still, its founder doesn’t believe industry players should feel threatened.

“Professional brokers who add value and put their client’s needs first will never be threatened by mortgage comparison sites,” Rob McLister, founder of RateSpy.com told MortgageBrokerNews.ca. “This is about saving Canadians money on their single biggest debt, by creating an open, centralized rate market.”

RateSpy.com currently contains almost 3,000 rates is one of its main advantages over competing rate sites, such as RateHub.com, according to McLister.

“RateSpy’s #1 edge is data; it has more rates from more lenders than most other mortgage comparison sites combined,” McLister said. “The more choices consumers have, the higher the probability they’ll find a better deal. Some of the mortgages on the site are from lenders that no one else tracks, especially small credit unions.”

Another advantage is its no-fee approach. Currently, the site is supported by ads and, eventually, brokers and lenders can add their logo and an <Apply Now> link to their website – for a flat fee.

“We don’t create economic hurdles for lenders and brokers to participate; there is no $55 per lead fee like some sites, no $7.50 per click fee and so on,” McLister said. “We simply want good, honest, experienced mortgage professionals who deliver value and efficient service to consumers.”

And one last key differentiator is its community aspect.

“There is the community aspect: If a consumer finds a great deal, they can easily share it with others in RateSpy’s message forums,” McLister explained. “And if they have questions, the community can answer them in an unbiased fashion.”

As for how the rates are amalgamated, McLister held his hand close to his chest.

“That’s the secret sauce.  It’s taken us three years to refine the data collection process and build the database, which contains over 2,900 rates,” McLister said. “Suffice to say, we have a lot of computer assistance.”

  • LindsJJ on 2013-10-31 8:20:19 AM

    Im curious to see how this plays out. Unless Ratespy has deep pockets to advertise with the big boys (RSM and RateHub), I dont see this going anywhere. How does Ratespy get in front of the consumer? If they arent charging per lead how are they going to get on the first page on Google searches? It looks like a nice web site but lacks depth and info, again making it hard for it to show up on Google searches.

  • Rob McLister on 2013-10-31 10:42:10 AM

    Hi LindsJJ,

    Kind of curious myself. :)

    You ask some very valid questions. Indeed, if a mortgage comparison site can't rank high for the right search terms, what's the point?

    Fortunately the site has a tremendous team, a sound roll-out plan and some powerful consumer-friendly features....and many many more to come.

    Cheers
    Rob

  • Marvis Olson on 2013-10-31 11:14:31 AM

    The future is here !!

  • Ron Butler on 2013-10-31 11:35:08 AM

    Best Wishes to Rob in his new endeavour.

  • Ryan Kirwan, HQ Mortgages Inc. on 2013-10-31 12:39:15 PM

    If its anything like his other website, then I'm sure it'll be a success.

    Rob has helped many of us brokers out over the past few years with his informative blogs at canadianmortgagetrends.com. While he created this site for the general public, it really serves as the best "objective" place to keep updated on mortgage trends for ALL mortgage professionals in Canada!

    All of us actually owe it to Rob to give this new site a chance, because of this FREE information he provides us from week to week.

    I haven't even looked at the new site yet, but I'm going to register and be active on it.

    Happy Halloween everyone!

  • John Bargis, Mortgage Edge on 2013-11-01 10:17:48 AM

    Although I applaud new ventures in the mortgage broker space, I'm a firm believer that the vast majority of the mortgage business will continue to be procured through traditional methods for some time to come. Look no further than the numbers on the amount of business generated through rate sites vs the business generated by the feet on the street with strong spheres of influence and solid business plans.

    There's a reason why the Banks are refocusing on the retail part of their business. It's because building strong personal relationships works best for the bottom line.

    Rate sites may serve their purpose for a small part of the market, but playing the rate game is a race to the bottom, "and for this reason, I'm out."

  • Ron Butler on 2013-11-01 10:35:27 AM

    John, I respect your judgement and business acumen. You have built a very strong operation and have successfully fought battles that would have scared off a lesser person.

    There will always be a place for full service mortgage brokers: ALWAYS. It will never go away. What this is really about is web based commerce and that is coming, it just is. It will grow and grow. Scotia has left ING alone as a web based entity for that reason. Maybe not the biggest mortgage brokers in Canada use these systems but interestingly the fastest growing brokers in Canada use them.

    It's very true the banks have refocused on person to person banking in the last 10 years, it was a smart move for them as they adopted a strategy of selling more products to their customers. The next 10 years may be different. Likely more and more consumers for mortgages will develop a willingness to shop on line. The data seems to be pointing in that direction, it may be 5 years or 10 years but eventually 50% to 75% of financial transactions will happen on the Web. It just makes sense that if you can find your future spouse online you will eventually find your mortgage there too.

  • John Bargis, Mortgage Edge on 2013-11-01 10:58:18 AM

    Hey Rob.....Thank you for the kind words. I likewise have great respect for you.

    We are actually agreeing to a great extent conceptually, but not so much on the timelines. There's no question that the on line business will grow, but not so fast my friend.

    You use the example of ING and how their model is being maintained by Scotia as a result of it's success. True enough, but in the grand scheme of things, the large majority of business was, and will continue to be driven by personal relationships for many years to come.

    The good news is, there's room for all models in our industry. I'm just not prepared to embrace a model that actually diminishes the value of our industry by fighting over price and narrow margins. Good solid financial advice is worth it's weight in gold.

  • Craig Ferguson on 2013-11-01 7:38:54 PM

    Our mandate is to put the broker and his business on a higher ground than the banks will ever be able to. I will take great pleasure over the next while meeting many of you, across the table over coffee and bread, and supporting brokers of all size. If we don't together and prove our worth, it will be, as so eloquently said, a fight over the scraps the bank spits out, and a race to the bottom.

  • Craig Ferguson on 2013-11-01 7:39:17 PM

    Our mandate is to put the broker and his business on a higher ground than the banks will ever be able to. I will take great pleasure over the next while meeting many of you, across the table over coffee and bread, and supporting brokers of all size. If we don't together and prove our worth, it will be, as so eloquently said, a fight over the scraps the bank spits out, and a race to the bottom.

  • Craig Ferguson, BrokerEmpowerment.ca on 2013-11-01 7:40:06 PM

    Our mandate is to put the broker and his business on a higher ground than the banks will ever be able to. I will take great pleasure over the next while meeting many of you, across the table over coffee and bread, and supporting brokers of all size. If we don't together and prove our worth, it will be, as so eloquently said, a fight over the scraps the bank spits out, and a race to the bottom.

  • $usan Zanders on 2013-11-06 10:23:17 AM

    Hi Rob,
    Congratulations on your new rate site! I am sure it will be a great success, as is your blog and canadianmortgagetrends.com. We appreciate your knowledge and information you provide to our mortgage industry.

Broker news forum is the place for positive industry interaction and welcomes your professional and informed opinion.

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