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The Big Story: Do you have what it takes?

The best agents may be born and not made, but what traits should increasingly selective brokers be looking for in this confusing and challenging market. MBN finds out.

Video transcript below:

Reporter: Good agents are easy to get. Great ones are hard to find. What makes a great agent? Are they born to sell? Can they really be taught the skills? Born or made, what makes a great agent on this week’s Big Story.

Math, communication, administration, agents need to have it all. Or do they? Are personality and sales more important than doing the paperwork?

Erin Hamilton, Sherwood Mortgage Group

Erin Hamilton: Halfway through my career I moved location completely moving out to find out and there no one knew who I was anymore. I literally went door to door. People don’t like that. If I get your name out quickly and whether they like you or not, at least your name’s there. I certainly didn’t go to school, primarily I have a degree in psychology, it may be that could help a little bit. I don’t really think it does, but just because my background isn’t math, doesn’t mean I can’t put up my own mortgage together, because half of it is communicating properly with the underwriter, so they understand why weaknesses of an application can actually become twisted around and smoothed out. Even having a good relationship with your underwriter can go a long way. Instead of them, if they know you personally they know you are not necessarily sending crappy deals on purpose. They might call you and say well, this doesn’t seem right. Why would you send that in? They kind of get to know you. So you know, being personable is huge, it’s just being able to convey ideas properly, it’s not all about the numbers.

Reporter: Finding the one is critical, but how do you know they are the one?

Joe Walsh, Bedrock Financial Group Inc.

Joe Walsh: Well if you are talking about what makes a good mortgage selling agent and can they also come with good administration skills, I say first of all I find it difficult to be able to you know without somebody already being in the business, being successful, I find it hard to tell whether this person is, they come from all walks of life and you are never sure and sometimes when I interview people, you know first of all I tell them that it’s not as easy as it looks. Right. It is difficult, people think they are [going recommend us], it’s so easy to do mortgage, it is not so easy.

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    It’s becoming a broken record. Consumer debt levels rise and there are calls for the government to tighten mortgage lending. The latest rumour involves the lowering of the maximum amortization from 30 to 25 years. Many brokers disagree with the idea, suggesting 30-year amortizations are largely used to free up cash each month, money often better spent paying down high-interest debt. In addition to amortization rumours, some lenders have recently cut or altered their products for business for self and new immigrants. Some brokers think this may be short-sighted, while others say the industry will adapt, like it has always done. On today’s Big Story, we spoke to James Robinson of The Mortgage Centre-Mortgage Watch Inc., John Panagakos of Dominion Lending Centres-Home Financial Inc. and David Smith of Oriana Financial. Find out on today’s The Big Story, on MortgageBrokerNews.ca TV, your home for industry news, opinion and analysis.

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    It might have seemed like the end of the world: A competitor offering an unmatchable 2.99 per cent on a five-year fixed. Brokers were understandably concerned about the pressure it would place on them to match the historic low. In the end, it actually helped drive business for brokers, as some reported a relatively brisk demand from preapproved and new clients. MortgageBrokerNewsTV recently spoke to mortgage professionals James Robinson of The Mortgage Centre-Mortgage Watch Inc., John Panagakos of Dominion Lending Centres-Home Financial Inc., and David Smith at Oriana Financial to get their analysis Find out on MortgageBrokerNewsTV, your home for the industry’s best news, opinion and analysis

  • Brokers positive about year ahead Brokers positive about year ahead (views 19476)

    2012 is sure to be another year of challenges for mortgage brokers as they face a flat real estate market, international economic uncertainty and increased pressue from banks and the accompanying low rates. MortgageBrokerNewsTV recently spoke to some brokers at the Mortgage Alliance 2012 Kick-Off Rally in Toronto, including Dan Balfour, Lisette Amalfi, Scott Ede, and Walter and Karen Monteiro to find out how they're going to meet these industry challenges head-on. Find out on MortgageBrokerNewsTV, your home for the industry’s best news, opinion and analysis.

  • Broker Panel: Part III Broker Panel: Part III (views 14073)

    The trend towards efficiency in the industry is one that everyone has an opinion on. It’s just one of the issues in the broker/lender relationship, which drives the industry. In Part III of MortgageBrokerNewsTV’s broker panel, our group of experienced and successful brokers from across the country share their thoughts on this topic, as well as other, such as volume pooling and the broker/underwriter relationship, which has seen much debate in the industry over the past year. In the coming weeks the panel will touch on other mortgage industry hot-button issues. Find out on MortgageBrokerNewsTV, your home for the industry’s best news, opinion and analysis.

  • Industry leaders chart challenges of 2012 Industry leaders chart challenges of 2012 (views 16071)

    The past year has been a challenging one for brokers and the mortgage industry and it’s not going to let up in 2012. MortgageBrokerNewsTV recently spoke with some industry leaders to discuss what those challenges facing brokers and lenders are and how they might meet these challenges in the coming year. For brokers, increasing market share in the face of bank competition, a cooling housing market and trying to stay the course amidst economic uncertainty is just some of what awaits. For lenders, issues such as access to capital and potential regulatory changes around non-income qualified lending will be high on the list moving forward. On today’s Big Story, we spoke to Ron Swift of Pacific Mortgage Group, Andrew Moor of Equitable Trust and Martin Reid of Home Trust. Find out on today’s The Big Story, on MortgageBrokerNews.ca TV, your home for industry news, opinion and analysis.

  • Broker Panel: Part II Broker Panel: Part II (views 14864)

    The past 12 months has seen a new level reached in the competition between brokers and the Big Banks. Increasing pressure in the form of low rates has forced some brokers to compete for clients soley on rate, while others say customer service is what separates the broker industry from banks. In Part II of MortgageBrokerNewsTV’s broker panel, our group of experienced and successful brokers from across the country share their thoughts on this topic, which has seen much debate in the industry over the past year. In the coming weeks the panel will touch on other mortgage industry hot-button issues. Find out on MortgageBrokerNewsTV, your home for the industry’s best news, opinion and analysis.

  • The Big Story: The self-employed market The Big Story: The self-employed market (views 18218)

    An expanding market for brokers still has obstacles to overcome. They see the business-for-self market as a key growth area for an industry looking to grow originations in a slowing market. The statistics back them up with more than 22 per cent of Canadians now self-employed. These borrowers face challenges, say brokers, as lenders mitigate their risk, but policies applied across the board don’t take into account individual differences say brokers. On today’s Big Story, we spoke Sabeena Bubber of VERICO Integre Mortgage Partners, Blair Anderson of Anderson Associates and Reed Harris of VERICO Manifest Mortgage Corp. Find out on today’s The Big Story, on MortgageBrokerNews.ca TV, your home for industry news, opinion and analysis.

  • Broker Panel: Part I Broker Panel: Part I (views 15836)

    Do new agents and brokers receive adequate education and training? Are the provincial licensing requirements enough? MortgageBrokerNewsTV gathered a group of experienced and successful brokers from across the country for our inaugural panel discussion to get their thoughts on this topic, which has seen much debate in the industry over the past few months. In the coming weeks the panel will touch on other mortgage industry hot-button issues. Find out on MortgageBrokerNewsTV, your home for the industry’s best news, opinion and analysis.

  • The Big Story: Can you police broker recruiting practices? The Big Story: Can you police broker recruiting practices? (views 18142)

    It might best be described as herding cats – trying to control the practice of mortgage brokerages recruiting agents from competitors. Some in the industry insist it’s just the nature of the business, but increasingly there are calls for some kind of code of conduct that brokerages could agree on when it comes to recruitment practices. On today’s Big Story, we spoke to Ron De Silva of Real Mortgage Associates, Jessi Johnson of VERICO Jessi Johnson Mortgage Team and Gino Tieri of MCAP. Find out on today’s The Big Story, on MortgageBrokerNews.ca TV, your home for industry news, opinion and analysis.