New AMBA prez focuses on growing broker market share

New AMBA prez focuses on growing broker market share

New AMBA prez focuses on growing broker market share

AMBA’s new president is pledging to grow consumer awareness of broker services at the same time strengthen the organization’s ties to industry players outside Alberta – both ways of overcoming stagnant broker market share.

“As brokers, we have a penetration rate that seems to be stalled,” said Paul Bojakli, in his first blog after assuming the head of the Alberta Mortgage Brokers Association. “Only by making the consumer more aware of the value we bring, can we increase our numbers in Alberta. This is not an easy task, and one that needs to involve all organizations within our industry. AMBA will continue working hard to raise consumer awareness throughout Alberta. We must continue to make the consumer aware of the broker industry and what exactly a broker does. Let the consumer know that they can talk to us.”

The veteran broker, a partner with Quantus Mortgage Solutions, is also a real estate agent and formally took up the post early this month at the annual meeting. He follows on the heels of Dean Koeller.

While Bojakli’s agenda is still being shaped, the focus on upping the profile of brokers in his province is a top priority for AMBA members facing a slowing market at the same time prices in key centres such as Edmonton and Calgary slip.

While origination opportunities for brokers erode, their collective share of the mortgage market has remained steady over the last two years, according to the 2011 CMHC consumer survey, released last week. Moving his members beyond that barrier is another priority, said Bojakli.

“We are missing important issues,” he said. “We need to stay ahead of the curve. Our industry seems to always be in a reactive position. I would like to see us in a proactive position. Individually, we all need to take a bigger role in communication. There are many things we can do in our day-to-day businesses to make working together a better environment. We need to talk more about what’s happening in our industry and how we can contribute positively. We need to start listening and working more closely with each other.”

Part of that involves the launch of AMBA’s new website, with both social media feeds and a chat zone for members as well as a consumers’ section focused on offering Albertans specific information and tools to navigate themselves through an increasingly complex mortgage process.

  • Nick Kyprianou, Equity Financial trust 2011-06-29 2:55:13 AM
    I think we need to spend more time on educating and traing brokers before we raise the profile. Most brokers just make it about the lowest rate. By doing this they are digging their own grave because the Bank will always beat the brokers at that game because they can make additional revenue by cross selling other products and take over the mortgage brokers client.
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  • Paul B. 2011-06-29 6:25:03 AM
    Nick, you have a valid point. Education is very important and it is one of AMBA's top priorities. AMBA is working very hard to elevate the standards of education not only in Alberta but across the country. We have spent a lot of money and invested a tremendous amount of time on our education programs. We need to increase the barrier to entry and we need accountability.
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  • Dan M. 2011-06-30 4:31:18 AM
    I agree on the education point as well. However, the other initiative that we need to take on is to quit competing with ourselves and focus on competing with the banks. There are two fronts to this; I know of several brokers(ages) who will routinely undercut other brokers with rate buy downs, send out an application to multiple lenders to sandbag etc. This needs to stop. Also, quit sending deals to the big 5 banks and their subsidiaries when there are just as good broker-only lenders. You are feeding one hand, while the other is holding the knife that is trying to slit your throat.
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