Specialist removes 'mortgage broker' from web name

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“TDmortgagebroker.com” – the website of a TD mortgage specialist – has now been removed after  MortgageBrokerNews.ca queried the unlicensed use of that name.

“I have no comment,” the Toronto-based mortgage specialist told MortgageBrokerNews.ca Friday.

Web users now entering that URL are redirected to the same site content, but with a different URL. And within hours of MortgageBrokerNews.ca contacting the mortgage specialist, the original URL had also been removed from Google search results for “TD and mortgage broker.” It is still, however, coming up in web searches for "TDMortgagebroker.com."

Nowhere else on the site does the mortgage specialist use the term “mortgage broker” to describe herself, instead relying on “mobile mortgage specialist” to sell her services as a TD employee. Her name is not in  FSCO's database of licensed mortgage brokers and agents.

Any past or present “misappropriation” of the provincially regulated and licensed term “mortgage broker” is problematic, industry veterans told MortgageBrokerNews.ca.

“Well, they’re not a mortgage broker, but a mortgage specialist working for the bank,” said Nick Kyprianou, a veteran of the broker channel and CEO of Equity Financial Trust. “As soon as someone says 'I’m a mortgage broker,' they’re saying to their clients that they are going to get them the best and most appropriate mortgage for them through any lender, not just one. If I were CAAMP, I would investigate the use of the name ‘mortgage broker’ here.”

Under regulations enforced by the Financial Services Commission of Ontario, use of the term mortgage broker by unlicensed parties is prohibited. That censure applies to all and any unlawful use of the term in marketing and advertising. Bank mortgage specialists are unregulated by FSCO, their use of “mortgage broker” prohibited.

This latest case may reignite broker concerns about mobile mortgage specialists, which banks have increasingly positioned as direct competitors to those independent players.

It also follows April’s controversy surrounding the leak of a promotional flyer produced by another mobile specialist, this one at RBC. The document, trading in stereotypes about the broker channel, purported to highlight the educational, philosophical and operational differences between brokers and bank-employed mortgage specialists. It effectively casts the former in a negative light.

That doesn’t appear to be the case with the TD specialist, who opted to use the title “mortgage broker” to help promote herself to clients.

  • Barb Wetmore on 2011-10-18 3:08:45 AM

    I was under the impression that a "Mortgage Broker", has a "Brokers License" , so this article is still misleading. If you don't have a Brokers License then you are called a Mortgage Agent whether you work for a bank or a Brokerage.

  • Margo Wynhofen on 2011-10-18 3:11:19 AM

    This TD specialist also states that she is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Let's all call her Sunday at 3 a.m.

  • Angela Wong-Liao, Invis Inc on 2011-10-18 3:41:26 AM

    I fully agree with Barb Wetmore, it can be very confusing with the public if a bank rep is calling himself/herself a mortgage broker or mortgage agent because according to FSCO, these are the only two titles for licensed mortgage professionals. We should also be very careful not to use other titles on our business cards, I notice some of the mortgage agent/broker calling themselves mortgage planner or mortgage architect, we are licensed mortgage professionals and the legal title is either mortgage broker or mortgage agent (FSCO guidelines).

  • Peter Draper on 2011-10-18 3:53:06 AM

    Barb, you can be registered at FSCO with the title Mortgage Broker (and not be the broker of record with FSCO) provided you have the requisite educational requirements. Look me up at FSCO, and my title is Mortgage Broker even though I work through another registered mortgage broker.

  • @GTAMortgageNews on 2011-10-18 4:14:10 AM

    Angela,as per the MBLAA R.187/08.9(4) FSCO licsensed brokers or Agents need only make 1 reference to their title as broker or agent in public relations material. I think other terms are misleading, but the Act still prescribes the option for brokers or agents to call themselves Morgtgage Superstar if they so chose as long as the have reference to their title somewhere in their material.

    That aside I am a Mortgage Broker and take offense to a Bank employee calling themselves a Mortgage Broker. It is very misleading and constitutes false,misleading and deceptive advertising.

  • Steve in Toronto on 2011-10-18 11:36:06 PM

    good point; but sadly one of CAAMP's foremost issue is that is has always been a "LENDER" biased group.

  • BCBroker87 on 2011-10-19 3:58:40 AM

    Things needs to change. For banks to treat us as competitors is just ridiculous. I know it is what it is but for the banks to limit the mouth that feeds them is foolish. Successful mortgage brokers are successful because they offer an added value. Once banks tighten up their broker relationships, they will ultimately receive less business. This reminds me of the horror story that got DLC Bankfighter into a mess of name mis-appropriation. Maybe the gov't should threaten this mortgage specialist with 10M fine or 5 years in prison. Lets even the playing field here people.

  • AMP broker on 2011-10-19 5:01:01 AM

    To Steve in Toronto, CAAMP is a huge supporter of brokers. They are against regulation of the industry and put their money where their mouth is. They are giving free education in Ontario to help the brokers.

  • Vince Gaetano on 2011-10-19 5:57:58 AM

    What is the TD Specialists name? Why does MortgageBrokerNews.ca feel obligated to withold this relevant piece of information to the story? If you are going to write a relevant story, it is important to detail all the facts or don't publish it.

  • For Real? on 2011-10-19 1:16:27 PM

    To AMP broker, CAAMP against regulation? I don't think so. CAAMP wants to become THE National Regulator, why else have they have strived to become the main educator in Ontario and the only gateway to becoming a broker in smaller provinces? CAAMP is the only organization I know of that actually promotes AGAINST its OWN members. They push and promote the AMP designation which effectively denounces CAAMP members without the designation! DO yourself and the industry a favor and support your provincial organizations and get involved.

  • VansT on 2011-10-20 3:17:46 AM

    Regarding the: "educational, philosophical and operational differences between brokers and bank-employed mortgage specialists',
    I would just advise the banks that we have Mortgage Broker staff with a BBA degree in Finance/Economics and an MA Degree in Economics from McMaster University.
    I wonder how many bank-employed Mortgage Specialists have those credentials.

  • George C on 2011-10-20 4:57:02 AM

    This shows the ignorance of mobile specialists. This person was probably a teller 2 yrs ago and a "financial adviser" last year. So now the bank gave her a card calling her a mortgage specialist and she thinks she is a broker. Most bank specialists have no clue what a licensed broker is.

  • Julia Krause on 2011-10-21 3:58:08 AM

    Name or no name, THANK YOU mortgagebrokernews.ca for outing this person, and keep up the good work!

  • duke1961 on 2011-10-22 5:19:07 AM

    Lots of Bank mortgage specialists hold them selves out as brokers. Very rarely in print but it happens vebally all the time. They freely tell clients that they are mortgage brokers for a bank. I do not like it but on the other hand I am flattered that they have to lie to be as credible as us.

  • miffed on 2011-10-22 6:25:43 AM

    in response to George C - lots of brokers were bus drivers 2 years ago and now are mortgage "brokers". What's the difference if this specialist was a teller 2 years ago. At least she has some training in banking. Many, many brokers have no knowledge of banking other than a one year course they took from home. Stop slagging bank employees, they are given years of training.

  • George C on 2011-10-22 6:48:04 AM

    Dear Miffed - the point is there are too many inexperienced people in our industry both on the broker side and on the bank side. Banks hiring people who know nothing more than to quote a rate and have no mortgage or real estate experience turn what we do into a rate war which we cannot win. This also puts downward pressure on our commissions. I know the banks don't pay full commission to their "specialists" when they sell the ranch, bad for everyone!

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