Biz business Building

Winter 2010
Tips and
IMBA’s netwers!
headquar on
The assoctioa its
moves in ity
new facil
Vol 3 Issue 4
The Voice of the Mortgage Brokers and Agents of Ontario
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Vol 3 Issue 4
The Voice of the Mortgage Brokers and Agents of Ontario
8 President’s Message
10 Industry News
12 Calendar of Courses
14 New IMBA Members
Winter 2010
14 Calendar of Events
34 Career Corner
34 Advertisers Index
16 Committee Update: What IMBA’s committees have been
up to in the last quarter
By Liz Katynski
19 M ining for data: How data mining can help you stay on top of your
clients’ needs and broaden your customer base
By Kelly Parker
23 M arketing magic: How one company upped the ante when it came to
cross-selling its mortgage and critical life mortgage insurance
24 Exhibitors’ blueprint: Trade show expert Barry Siskind weighs in on
the best way to showcase your company
By Roma Ihnatowycz
28 Getting serious: Brokers need to become more vigilant about
managing risk exposure to avoid high E&O premiums
By Leslie Fallaise
30 VoxPop: Why use a mortgage broker? Brokers from the industry
comment on the reasons
By Liz Katynski
32 Eye on the community: Mortgage professional Charles Bristoll gains
recognition and accolades for active volunteering
By Nestor Gula
Robert Thompson
Independent Mortgage Brokers
Association of Ontario
2950 Keele Street, Suite 103
Toronto, Ontario M3M 2H2
Tel: 416.252.4622
Fax: 416.252.4623
Province-wide Tel:
Province-wide Fax:
Jeanne Fronda
Associate Editor
Roma Ihnatowycz
Executive Editor
Leslie Fallaise
Sales Manager
Joe Strazzullo
David Tetlock,
Marlene Moshenko,
Kari Morgan,
John Pashko
Team Leader
Adrienne N. Wilson
Graphic Design
James T. Mitchell
Published by:
5255 Yonge Street, Suite 1000
Toronto, Ontario
M2N 6P4
Toll Free: 1.866.216.0860
ext. 229
[email protected]
531 Marion Street
Winnipeg, MB Canada
R2J 0J9
Kevin Brown
December 2010
Senior Vice-President
Publication Mail
Robert Thompson
Agreement #40787580
Branch Manager
Please return
Nancie Privé
undeliverable copies to:
All rights reserved.
Independent Mortgage
The contents of this
Brokers Association
publication may not
of Ontario
be reproduced by any
120 Eglinton Avenue East,
means, in whole or in
Suite 500
part, without the prior
Toronto, Ontario
written consent of
the association.
M4P 1E2
Articles and information in this
magazine represent the opinions of
the writers and do not necessarily
reflect the opinions of the
Independent Mortgage Brokers
Association of Ontario (IMBA), its
board of directors or its staff. The
information used within the magazine
was, to the best of our knowledge,
accurate at the time of writing. Certain
names, scenarios or identifying
information may have been changed
to protect confidentiality. Users of any
information contained in BrokerBiz
are encouraged to validate that
information by independent means.
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Make an Incredibly Smart Decision
President’s Message
he onset of fall has proven to be quite
busy at IMBA, with September 12
marking IMBA’s tenth anniversary.
IMBA has made some significant
strides over the last 10 years in mortgage
education, participation in changes in
mortgage legislation and regulations, and
public awareness to the consumer. IMBA takes
pride in its accomplishments to date and looks
forward to a successful future.
In early September, IMBA’s treasurer Robert
Gascon and I attended the Alberta Mortgage
Brokers Association’s (AMBA) annual
conference and trade show in Red Deer, Alberta.
This year’s theme was “Under the Big Top.”
The conference was well attended. On Friday,
the main events included an economist panel
discussion led by former Alberta Premier
Ralph Klein. The keynote speaker was well
known author David Chilton, who penned
The Wealthy Barber. At the conference,
we also met with our provincial and
national counterparts at the interprovincial
associations meeting.
On September 20, I had the pleasure of
attending the Ontario Mortgage Industry
Ladies Charity Golf Tournament. I was
part of a great foursome that included Hali
Strandlund, chair of CAAMP, Joanne Vickery,
president of MBABC, and Sharon Fitzpatrick,
vice president of Paradigm.
September 30 was the date of the first annual
Wounded Warriors Charity Golf Tournament.
Wounded is an independent
not-for-profit charity that supports Canadian
soldiers wounded overseas. It is primarily a
fundraising mechanism that supports existing
programs that tend to injured soldiers. IMBA
selected Wounded Warriors as its corporate
charity for 2010.
Along with IMBA’s vice president Albert
Collu and his wife Kim, and fellow IMBA
8 • brokerbiz
director Lou Perrotta, I attended the
Tournament’s dinner where Albert and I
presented cheques totalling $7,100 for this
important cause.
At the end of September, IMBA moved to
its new corporate headquarters and training
facility located in the beautifully renovated,
heritage George Jackson House at 2950
Keele Street in Toronto. This is a very
exciting transition for IMBA to permanent
headquarters with adequate space for
staff, storage and a private, well equipped
training room.
IMBA has saved a considerable amount of
money in monthly fixed costs by making
this move and has enhanced the services
we are able to provide to our members
and the industry as a whole. The training
room is available for meetings, training and
other uses by IMBA members and business
partners. Please contact the IMBA office
for details.
The IMBA Board of Directors has
commenced a comprehensive strategic
planning initiative. This began with a
facilitated session on Friday, October 15
and continued on Saturday, October 16.
IMBA is examining all facets of its business
including its vision, mandate and value
proposition to the industry. It is expected to
take place over a series of sessions covering
different core topics and objectives. I will
report on the progress as it unfolds here.
And last, but certainly not least, a happy,
safe and joyous holiday season to you, your
family and colleagues. I wish you every
success in 2011.
Margo Wynhofen
President, IMBA
Margo Wynhofen, CPMB
President, IMBA
It’s about more than
just a great rate.
And you know it!
“ Service” wins the deal!
Lending Excellence,
by people who care.
Experience the Equitable approach.
Open conversation. Partnership success.
Equitable Teams take the time to see & hear
what’s often missed . . .
......Client Circumstance.
Got a Client Circumstance that
wants Lending Excellence?
Let’s talk today.
In Ontario call:
416.515.7000 1.866.407.0004
IMBA moves
into new office
IMBA moved into its permanent
corporate headquarters in September,
in the beautifully restored George
Jackson House at 2950 Keele Street in
Toronto. It was a fitting time for the
move, as IMBA had just celebrated
its 10th anniversary on September
12. The move represents a milestone
for IMBA and has been a goal for
the association since its inception ten
years ago.
Please turn to the Committee Update
for further details about the benefits
of the move.
2950 Keele Street, Suite 103
Toronto, Ontario M3M 2H2
IMBA’s Annual
Family Ski Day
Join us for a great day of family
fun and skiing. Activities for the
entire family, downhill skiing,
snowboarding, cross-country skiing,
snowshoeing, sitting by a warm fire.
All proceeds from this event will
be donated to the Children’s
Wish Foundation. Monday,
February 21, 2011.
TEL: GTA – 416.252.4622
Province-wide: – 1.877.564.4622
FAX: GTA – 416.252.4623
Province-wide: – 1.866.232.8385
[email protected]
IMBA launches new benefit program
IMBA is introducing a new benefit
program for its members, offering
group automobile and home insurance
through the Waterloo Insurance
Company (a division of Economical
Insurance) and LMS PROLINK Ltd.
Members can receive competitive group
rates and quality insurance coverage for
car, home, condominium, apartment,
cottage, seasonal home, fine art and
other valuables.
Applicants will also be entered
into a draw to win the $5,000.00
pre-paid MasterCard. As an added
bonus, Waterloo Insurance will
also send each applicant a $5.00
gift card for simply requesting
a quotation.
For more information, call the
Waterloo Insurance Sales and
Service Centre today at
Wounded Warriors cheque presentation
IMBA president Margo Wynhofen,
together with committee chairs Lou
Perrotta and Albert Collu, attended the
Wounded Warriors Golf Tournament
dinner September 30. During the event,
they presented the charity with cheques
totaling $7,100 from money gathered
by IMBA members at the association’s
SummerFest and conference events.
“They were thrilled with the size of
our donation and very thankful for our
10 • brokerbiz
efforts this past year in raising money
and overall awareness for their cause,”
said Wynhofen.
The threesome also purchased raffle
tickets at the dinner for a chance to win
two open-ended tickets from Air Canada
for anywhere in the world. While they
did not win, Wynhofen commented that,
“This was a fantastic idea to perhaps adopt
at one of our future IMBA events to raise
some funds for our charity of choice.”
Air Canada donated the tickets,
and each table had an envelope
with strands of five tickets that
could be purchased for $20 a
strand. There was also a prize
raffle in which everyone came out
a winner.
The Wounded Warrior Project is a
charity dedicated to helping injured
service men and women. It is this
year’s charity of choice for IMBA.
Calendar of Courses
Mortgage Agent Course
Winter 2011 Course Calendar
Accelerated Correspondence
Start time: January 7, 2011
Duration: 2 weeks
Start time: January 14, 2011
Duration: 10 weeks
IMBA Office, Toronto
Start time: January 22, 2011
Duration: 3 weekends
IMBA Office, Toronto
Start time: January 24, 2011
Duration: 5 days
Accelerated Correspondence
Start time: January 28, 2011
Duration: 2 weeks
IMBA Office, Toronto
Start time: February 14, 2011
Duration: 5 days
Accelerated Correspondence
Start time: March 4, 2011
Duration: 2 weeks
IMBA Office, Toronto
Start time: March 21, 2011
Duration: 5 days
For more details please contact Meghan Delany, education coordinator, at 416-252-4622, Ext. 2 or [email protected]
Instructor-Led Programs In partnership with MortgagExec Ltd.
Putting It
All Together
A two-day program designed to help mortgage agents enhance their skills, knowledge and confidence to achieve
success. This program is for agents who have been in the business for a minimum of six months or those who
are looking for a great refresher to improve their business. (10 CE credits)
Sold Mortgage Math
In this one-day (six hour) program, we discuss “10 tips” to keep the cost of your client’s mortgage to a minimum
and, as a result, “sell” the client on your professionalism and ability to assist them with their needs. (6 CE credits)
Power of Sale
This is a one-day (six hour) program that will assist the mortgage broker and agent in determining how to proceed
in refinancing a property that is under power of sale or how to deal with the client when they receive the power of
sale notice. (6 CE credits)
For dates please go to and enter the ‘Events’ page.
12 • brokerbiz
Online Training Courses
Module I – Taking a Mortgage Application: How to confidently gather all the
information you need on a mortgage application
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
90 minutes
Module II – Reading Credit Reports: Uncover what credit reports are really
telling you
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
30 minutes
Module III – Supporting Documentation: Learn all about the documentation Online portion:
40 minutes
required to get your deals done
Practical applications:
50 minutes
Module IV – Basic Mortgage Types: The mortgage basics you MUST know
before talking to your first customer
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
30 minutes
Module V – Specific Mortgage Types: Knowledge you need to call yourself a
mortgage expert
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
40 minutes
Module VI – Categorizing Lenders: Different types of mortgage lending in
the Canadian market today
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
60 minutes
Module VII – Processing Files: How to determine if your client qualifies for a Online portion:
40 minutes
mortgage loan, summarize the deal and assemble an application package
Practical applications:
60 minutes
Module VIII – Agreements and Appraisals: Essential details in appraisals and
contracts so you can read them the way lenders do
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
60 minutes
Module IX – The Closing Process: Understanding the closing process and
costs involved to avoid surprises
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
30 minutes
Module X – Alternative Lending: Tap into the most profitable lending
opportunity that there is
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
30 minutes
Module XI – Rental and Recreation Properties: Rev up your revenue by
financing rental and recreation properties
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
30 minutes
Module XII – Self-Employed Borrowers: How to tap into the
20 per cent of Canadians who are self-employed
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
30 minutes
Module XIII – Construction Mortgages: Get the tools you need to
confidently arrange and close construction mortgages
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
90 minutes
Module XIV – Financing New Immigrants: How to tap into one of the
fastest growing markets in Canada
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
30 minutes
Module XV – Mortgages and Financial Planning: Present a professional
image when you are talking to financial planners
Online portion:
40 minutes
Suggested reading:
2 to 4 hours
Module XVI – Business Planning: Take charge of your business
– it is worth it
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
2 hours
Commercial Lending Basics 1 - An introduction to the commercial
mortgage market
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
40 minutes
Commercial Lending Basics 2 - An introduction into
commercial underwriting
Online portion:
40 minutes
Practical applications:
30 minutes
Vol 3 Issue 4 • 13
New IMBA Members
Zubair Afzal
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Olga Coulter
Laurentian Bank of Canada
Ken Hollinrake
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Jan Li
Centum Direct Financial Inc.
Avnish Kumar Aggarwal
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Natalia Czeren
Amit Jain
Centum Coast to Coast Financial Corp.
Anthony MacFarlane
Marks & Associates Mortgage Brokers Inc.
Sandy Jandu
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Meenu Malik
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Ranjit Jhutty
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Abid Maqsood
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Lakwinder Jhutty
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Julia Matchuk
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Swarnjit Battu
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Philip Beer
Macquarie Financial Ltd.
Meena Beetan
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Sandy Beniamin
Homeguard Funding Ltd.
Gulshan Bhandari
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Tanweer Bhatti
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Valerie Bizzoni
Dominion Lending Centres Mortgage Plus
Kirpal Singh Bodal
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Ray Brooker
Macquarie Financial Ltd.
Syed Mukarram Bukhari
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Kara Daniels
Macquarie Financial Ltd.
Brian Deckker
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Gagandeep Duggal
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Austin Dziwinski
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Steve Fabian
Firm Capital Corporation
Howard Freeman
Centum Capital Corporation
Amanda Garraway
Mortgage Edge
Ranjit Singh Gill
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Inderjit Gill
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Dilpreet Gill
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Alex Godfrey
Home Trust Company
Warwick Johnston
Mortgage Edge
Daljit Kahlon
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Harbans Kainth
Greater Toronto Mortgages & Financial
Services Corp.
Jaswinder Kaur
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Krzysztof Kazimierczuk
Canadian Lending Network Inc.Mississauga
Stephen Mohammed
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Syed Multani
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Harpreet Singh Multani
Greater Toronto Mortgages & Financial
Services Corp.
Ibrahim Niyazi
Centum One Financial Group Inc.
Michael Palmer
Mortgage Edge
Heather Philpott
Mortgage Edge
Nasir Khan
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Leslie Pinkus
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Chetan Khokhani
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Jagtar Punia
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Mark Buller
HLC Home Loans Canada
Sandeep Gosain
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Carmelo Buttice
Capital Direct
Antoinette Graham
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Prashant Kumar
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Richard Quelle
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Terence Carruthers
Verico One Mortgage Corp.
Stephen Halicki
All Ontario Financial Consultants Ltd.
Balbir Singh Lakha
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Roland Renaud
Centum Prime Realty Services Inc.
Danny Cimbron
Mortgage Edge
Dianne Harrison
Merix Financial Inc.
J. E. Michel Lalonde
Verico Capital Mortgages
Linda Roush Pokolm
Centum Future Mortgage Group Inc.
Stephen Clark
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Richard Hasfal
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Amarpreet Lashar
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Lakhbir Sahi
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
2011 IMBA Calendar of Events
Mortgage Agent Course
IMBA WinterFest
RIU Palace Paradise Island
Nassau, Bahamas
MARCH 2011
Mortgage Agent Course
14 • brokerbiz
April 13 to 14
Jagjit Singh
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Raj Kumar Singla
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Kelly Squelch-Simpson
Oriana Financial Group of Canada Ltd.
Georgios Stamatakos
Centum One Financial Group Inc.
Afzal Syed
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
APRIL 2011
IMBA Annual Conference, Trade Show
and Awards Gala
Alex Sigouin
Merix Financial Inc.
Michael Stagg
MorBridge Financial Corp.
Mortgage Agent Course
Barbara Scade
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Harbans Singh
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
February 5 to 12
Rajashree Sangameswar
Centum Custom Mortgage Solutions Inc.
Rupinder Singh Sarkaria
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Mortgage Agent Course
Balvir Saini
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Toronto, Ontario
Ravindra Uppal
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Simranjeet Singh Walia
Centum Interstate Mortgages Ltd.
Eric Wyckoff
Northwood Mortgage Ltd.
Team Bridgewater works harder for you.
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you the win — through strong support from our Business
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and high overall service levels.
Ask us about our new BwB POWER COMPENSATION®
PROGRAM for brokers and how you can qualify!
Personal. Efficient. Committed.
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IMBA_Halfpage_Ad_1010.pdf 1 10/15/2010 4:26:09 PM
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Vol 3 Issue 4 • 15
Committee Update
This Fall, BrokerBiz caught up with representatives
of IMBA’s various committees to find out what
they have been up to since the last issue of the
magazine. Here are the highlights:
Association Relations
The Associations Relations Committee
had nothing new to report.
Committee chair: Stewart Eadie
[email protected]
The Communications Committee
continues to provide the latest industry
news to IMBA members in a timely and
accurate manner. They also oversee the
publication of the popular BrokerBiz
magazine. In this issue, readers can enjoy
our new Careers section, designed with
IMBA members in mind.
The Communications Committee is also
excited about IMBA’s move to its new
premises. The new centralized location
offers more space in a convenient location.
Committee meetings will now be held
in the new offices, saving travel time for
members and money for the organization.
Committee chair: Martin Marshall
[email protected]
16 • brokerbiz
By Liz Katynski
offer IMBA members and others quality
education in a comfortable, accessible
environment that IMBA controlled. “We
will now offer IMBA courses right in our
own classrooms,” says Mal Eccles, chair of
the Education Committee.
To learn more about upcoming courses to
be offered in Toronto at the IMBA office
or by correspondence this winter and
spring, please visit
Committee chair: Mal Eccles
[email protected]
Events Committee
The Events Committee looks back on
a successful SummerFest and also looks
ahead to a warm and inviting WinterFest.
It was a great SummerFest. Over 200
golfers enjoyed a beautiful day at the
Legends of Niagara Golf Course in
Niagara Falls on August 20. The night
before, over 40 people attended an
impromptu networking event, where they
had an opportunity to discuss business
and other industry-related issues. The
annual SummerFest Golf Tournament
raised over $2,500 for IMBA’s charity of
choice 2010, the Wounded Warriors.
Education Committee
The Education Committee is very excited
about IMBA’s move to its new, more
spacious headquarters. The new facility
houses in-house classrooms, which will
provide a centralized location for IMBA
to conduct its training programs and hold
other lectures. As a result, IMBA will no
longer have to rent outside classroom space,
and members will be able to continue their
education in one familiar facility.
Winter is coming and it is going to be
cold. The solution to beating the winter
weather is to attend WinterFest 2011 from
February 5 to 12. This year’s event will be
held at the beautiful Riu Palace Paradise
Island Resort in Nassau, Bahamas. Guests
can choose from either a four-night or
a seven-night option. Reservations are
filling up fast so be sure to reserve today.
WinterFest is a great way to relax, unwind,
and network with fellow mortgage professionals in a warm, casual atmosphere.
The association always endeavoured to
one day have its own classroom in order to
Committee chair: Martin Marshall
[email protected]
Governance Committee
province by March 31. This will be the
third year the forms are required. In the first
two years, over 20 per cent of those who
were required to fill in the form did not
comply and complete their forms on time.
“We are very disappointed in the lack of
enthusiasm for getting it done,” says Jeff
Atlin, chair of the Government Relations
Committee. “The industry has higher
expectations. Currently a fine for a first-time
offender is $1,000. Fines may be increased.
There is no reason not to do it on time…
Other industries have a 96 per cent compliance rate. You can lose your license if you
don’t file it so don’t take this lightly.”
The Governance Committee is working
on developing a searchable database of
IMBA Board motions and follow-up to
motions. The new system will make the
process of referencing and monitoring
compliance of motions adopted by the
IMBA Board more efficient.
Shortly, the committee will address any
suggested changes to the bylaws that may
come out of the association’s strategic
planning session and that are recommended by the board.
The Governance Committee is also
preparing for the upcoming annual election of association directors for 2011,
and the IMBA AGM. The online election will be held in March, followed by
the association’s AGM, which will be
held later that month.
Committee chair: Lou Perrotta
[email protected]
There will be minor changes to the forms
this year, to make them more efficient.
Also, the Government Relations
Committee is still working with
accounting firm Deloitte in order to get
clarification on the recent implementation
of the HST in Ontario and how it affects
various kinds of broker activities. This is
expected to take time.
Relations Committee
Committee chair: Jeff Atlin
[email protected]
The Government Relations Committee
reminds all IMBA members that they
must complete their Annual Information
Return. The online form is a requirement
of FSCO.
The forms will be available in early
January and have to be completed by
every broker and administrator in the
Membership Committee
The Membership Committee is enthusiastically working to increase membership
in IMBA. It’s their job to secure existing
members and bring in new ones. They are
focused on the 6,000 brokers and agents
who are not members of IMBA or the other
professional organization in Ontario.
Professional association membership is
not a requirement under FSCO but the
committee is committed to extolling the
virtues of membership in IMBA, says
Jonah Bonn.
In September, the committee sent out
postcards to the 6,000 unaffiliated mortgage brokers and agents in the province.
The postcards told them about the benefits of IMBA membership.
To date, they have sent out two emails
via Constant Contact, also directed
to the 6,000 unaffiliated brokers. The
messages included information about
what IMBA is doing, upcoming events
and benefits of membership.
A direct to voice mail campaign is also
planned. Unaffiliated members will be
left informative voice mail messages to let
them know why they should join IMBA.
As well, the committee is working with
LMS Pro-Link, IMBA’s insurance provider,
to strengthen the errors and omissions
insurance program for members and make
it a better incentive for potential members.
Committee co-chairs:
Jonah Bonn
[email protected]
Glenn May-Anderson
[email protected]
Commercial Lending in Ontario for over 35 years
Construction Loans, Bridge and Equity Financing.
Loans from $1,000,000 to $15,000,000+
Recent loans:
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Financing Ontario projects only.
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Brokerage # 10160
Vector Financial Services Limited
Vol 3 Issue 4 • 17
Committee Update
Partner Relations
IMBA has commenced its roll-out of the 2011 sponsorship program. There are
some new and innovative changes to the 2011 program. In most cases, bundles
have been reduced by up to 25 per cent. There are also many value added
elements this year and the program is available online.
A potential sponsor is able to visit the newly updated IMBA website,,
to review and purchase a package.
At the time of this writing, IMBA’s total income is well ahead of plan, and our
reserve fund is growing each year, up from $0.00 three years ago!
The Finance Committee continues to evaluate and implement effective cost
control polices and examine more and better value-added products and events to
offer the IMBA membership.
I would also like to mention that IMBA’s recent move to its new headquarters will
help save a substantial sum of money for the association. The new space houses
in-house classrooms for IMBA’s continuing education courses, which means
IMBA will no longer need to pay for the rental of outside classroom space. All
courses will now be held at the new facility. As well, with the new space the need
for off-site storage has been eliminated.
For more information on the financial impact that IMBA’s new headquarters will
have on the association’s annual budget, please read my year-end report in the
upcoming spring issue of BrokerBiz.
Treasurer: Robert A. Gascon, AMP, [email protected]
Some successes must be repeated! IMBA
held their annual Partners Appreciation
Evening at The St. Andrews Club and
Conference Centre on the evening of
November 9. This has become one of
IMBA’s most prestigious and anticipated
events. The sole purpose of this event is to
host our business partners and volunteers in
an inviting environment and acknowledge
their support and commitment to IMBA.
Sponsorship solicitations for 2011 began
in late September and have started off
with a bang! IMBA wants to acknowledge
Dominion Lending Centres as its Platinum Sponsor for 2011. IMBA is excited
about building a close working relationship with DLC throughout the year.
For 2011, most sponsorship bundles have
been reduced by 25 per cent, while still
offering some significant enhancements
over bundles in the past years.
Sponsorship for 2011 is 80 per cent sold
at time of this writing. If you would be
interested in participating at the sponsorship level in IMBA please contact Robert
Gascon at 905-274-4801 or Lorne Collis
at 905-846-5687.
Committee co-chairs:
Jim Hill
[email protected]
Robert Gascon
[email protected]
Planning Committee
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18 • brokerbiz
The Planning Committee has hired a
facilitator to assist the association in the
creation of a strategic plan. The planning
session, led by the facilitator, will be held
on October 15 and 16 in IMBA’s new
offices on Keele Street in Toronto. All
board members are expected to attend.
Committee chair:
Jonah Bonn
[email protected]
Professional Standards
The Professional Standards Committee
had nothing new to report.
Committee chair: Albert Collu
[email protected]
for data
How data mining can help you stay on
top of your clients’ needs and broaden
your customer base
here are several terms for
it: personal information
management (PIM) and database or data mining, but
perhaps the most widely used is
the acronym CRM, which stands for
customer relationship management.
By definition, CRM is a broadly recognized, widely implemented strategy
for managing a company’s interactions
with customers, clients and sales prospects. It involves using technology to
organize, automate, and synchronize
business processes.
For the mortgage professional, that
means sales and marketing activities.
CRM is a tool that can help win new
clients, nurture and retain those the
company already has, entice former
clients back into the fold, and reduce the
costs of marketing and client service. In a
nutshell, it is the way commission-based
outside independent sales is done – or
at least, it’s the tool by which it is done
effectively. The point: CRM can be that
much of a driver of business.
“From my perspective,” says Lorne
Collis, president of KIT Services, “there
is a long-term goal and a short-term
goal. The long-term goal is to get your
By Kelly Parker
client back in five years and move them
to another lender so that you can pick
up another fee, which would generate a
continual income stream. The short-term
goal – which is not as predictable – is
to make your clients that you’ve done a
great job for, your marketing sales force,
going out to their friends and neighbours, telling them what a great job you
did for them, and recommending you.”
Choosing software
The first step, and by far the most
important, is to create a workable database so that you can start to mine it, and
that includes choosing your software.
There are a host of CRM software
applications on the market, and some
companies have developed proprietary
systems as well. Generally speaking, the
best applications will – once the relevant
customer contact and financial information has been input, which is too often
where the human element fails it – track
which client has which mortgage. They
will also assist in maintaining contact
with the client throughout the course of
their mortgage so that the broker will be
the default choice when it comes time to
renew, re-finance or otherwise alter the
terms of that mortgage.
Vol 3 Issue 4 • 19
One popular choice is GoMax Solutions,
used and endorsed by Greg Williamson,
mortgage broker and head coach of 180
Degree Coaching. “I like it,” he says,
“because it’s built by mortgage brokers
for mortgage brokers and they understand the business.”
Williamson likes that the automation
of the database assists in action planning. “From the time that you close your
mortgage until it renews in five years,”
he says, “there might be 15 touches
that I want to get out to you over that
five-year period. When I set you up in
my database, I indicate that I want this
(communication) plan to go to that
contact. Boom! For the next five years, all
of that stuff just happens. Emails go out
a certain times, or if I need to send you a
letter, a reminder will come up for me. It
automates the entire system, and I think
that’s fabulous.”
As a general rule, the more automated
the software offer, the better, because the
less automated it is, the more work that
is required by the broker. “I’ll always find
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Pinpointing strategy
What about the tasks themselves? The
ways CRM can be used are as varied as
the business styles of the people using
it. Ask a group of brokers how often
and in what ways they prefer to reach
out to their database, and they could
debate the pros, cons and types of
contacts for hours.
“We do a monthly mail-out – some of
it via email and some of it is direct,”
notes Mike DiStefano, president of BTB
Mortgage Solutions. DiStefano says that
“Seventy per cent of
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20 • brokerbiz
a reason to do something else,” notes
Williamson, “or if more work is required
by my staff, then I have to pay someone
to do it, and I think that’s where things
fall apart. The more automated it is, the
more likely I will stick with it.”
to a five-year term, so
in touch with your
database until just
before maturity, 70
per cent of them will
already be gone”
Doreen Walsh, First National Financial
his big campaign of late has been to go
through his database for last year’s primeplus clients and flipping those existing
clients out of their prime-plus products
because of the recent drop in rates. He
emphasizes that those were “very easy
flips” because they only paid a threemonth interest penalty to refinance.
DiStefano says he follows up with
current clients too, sending them a
plant on the day they take possession
Axiom’s CRM solutions help you
continually gather information about
prospects and customers, leverage
that information to develop customized campaigns, products and services,
personalize service to customers, and
support the marketing, sales, delivery
and service processes. (axiom-softsol.
Filogix Expert is a continually evolving
origination system designed to meet
the changing needs of the Canadian
mortgage industry. Expert is intended to
improve the way mortgage originators
of their property, “along with a bag of
popcorn and a blockbuster video card,
inviting them to have a movie night on
us because moving can be stressful, etc.
Of course, we survive off referrals, and
generally speaking, if you send somebody
something nice, they will send you three
or four names back.”
administer their business and their ability
to conduct business transactions with
lenders and clients. (
GoMax Solutions offers mortgage
professionals an easy-to-use, web-based
solution allowing them to foster existing
client relationships and open up new
business opportunities. The InTouch
CRM is divided into three powerful
modules including Action Plans,
Projects and Events. Each module is
designed to provide a specific level of
automated communication with clients.
inContact: Working directly with Filogix
technology, inContact is able to import
all of a broker’s applications and allow
him or her to create reports, newsletters,
emails, labels, cards, letters and much
more. This tool enables brokers to make
use of 13 different marketing programs
with over 100 templates and also gives
them the ability to create their own.
Users can search their existing database of
clients to find out who is maturing and
when, who is in the third year of their
mortgage term, or even which clients have
a birthday this month. (
Construction Financing can
be this easy!
DiStefano also contacts his purchase
clients after three years, sending out solicit
letters indicating that if they’ve done any
improvements or upgrades that they’ve
built up some equity in their home.
While many brokers choose to send out
monthly electronic newsletters, others
say that is too many. “I think that is
overkill,” says Collis. “I’d do it quarterly,
because in my opinion, something sent
out every month is not being read. If
you’re doing it 12 times a year, you’re
sending them fluff.”
Others like to send out birthday or holiday
cards, which – especially if sent close to
when a newsletter goes out – can leave
your client thinking of you as a spammer.
One common mistake that brokers
make is mistakenly thinking that data
mining would turn them into spammers.
“It’s funny because I do hear brokers
saying constantly that they don’t want to
bother their clients,” says Doreen Walsh,
account manager, GTA West for First
National Financial. “Don’t worry – if
you’re not bothering them, somebody
else is. Seventy per cent of deals don’t
make it to a five-year term, so if you’re
not keeping in touch with your database
until just before maturity, 70 per cent of
Vol 3 Issue 4 • 21
them will already be gone. The broker
who is effectively mining their database
and sending out periodic information to
stay in touch probably got that deal.”
The advice is: send good, specific, useful
information, and be very strategic in
doing so.
Williamson advocates using new technologies like Facebook, YouTube and
Twitter in order to get your message out
in as many formats as you can. “Instead
of me sending you out a letter that is
going to take three or four minutes to
read,” he says, “send out a video that
is going to take people three or four
minutes to watch. More people are going
to be inclined to watch that video.”
Williamson feels there’s an added benefit
to that technique in that “the customer is
almost creating a relationship with you at
the same time because they’re watching
you and feeling more like they know
you. Then, when they call you or refer
you, they are already feeling warm and
fuzzy about you because they have seen
you speak and, hopefully, your personality has shined through.”
under, and making sure that that financial plan still fits for them.”
One area of CRM that too often falls
by the wayside is good old-fashioned
conversation. “Part of your business
plan should be to reach out and speak
to your database,” says Walsh. “It’s very
helpful to break down your database
into (demographic) sectors,” she says,
“so that you know that a certain sector
of your database is going to be getting to
the age where their stressor is going to be
RRSPs, for example, or that they’ve got
kids headed off to university. Having that
information in your database will allow
you to pick up the phone, know what
is going on in your clients’ lives, and to
speak clearly to them about things that
are interesting and important to them.”
Do that properly, and you’re in business – long-term. “Our mortgage is our
biggest financial commitment in life,”
explains Walsh, “and if you send [information out to your current client base],
those people also know what’s going on
with family and friends’ financial circumstances as far as stages of life go with
retirement or kids in university. You want
your information to be put out into their
universe; that will grow your database
even more.”
Walsh is adamant that CRM is not just
about going back after existing clients
and farming them. “This business is
always a combination of hunting and
farming,” she says. “Database management is about following through on the
plan that you originally put your clients
Finally – and perhaps most crucially –
protect your database. “Have a database
that will follow you wherever you go,”
warns Walsh. “You need to absolutely
ensure when you are starting with a
company that you know what the situation will be with regard to your database
when it comes time to move on. That
database is your business. Each company
runs differently… You would have to have
those conversations right up front as to
where you stand with the database.” BB
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22 • brokerbiz
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Marketing Profile
Marketing magic
How one company
upped the ante when it
came to cross-selling its
mortgage and critical
life mortgage insurance
and critical life mortgage
insurance to clients is a
natural part of business for
Oriana Financial. However this year
the company turned things up a
notch with a novel new campaign
that included an Olympic theme and
sales contests to motivate agents.
“We wanted to help our mortgage
broker agents better understand the
advantages of owning private insurance
versus creditor insurance and how it’s a
superior product for clients,” explains
Mark Wadey, president of Oriana Wealth
The comprehensive campaign was a
huge success. It boosted sales, increased
brand awareness, provided agents with
additional sales tools and gave clients an
incentive to purchase insurance through
Oriana Wealth Management.
Elements of the campaign, which was
developed with the help of Torontobased JOLT Marketing, included sales
scripts, promotional marketing materials,
an internal sales contest to motivate
agents and a “Win A Free Mortgage
Payment” contest. As part of this contest,
clients that asked for an insurance quote
were entered for a chance to win one
of three prizes of $1,000 towards their
mortgage payment.
Olympian effort
The Insurance Olympics, the name for
the internal sales contest, launched the
same day as the Vancouver Olympics.
The Insurance Olympics launched the same day
as the Vancouver Olympics. Oriana piggybacked
on the Olympics buzz to present an exciting, fresh
and timely campaign
Oriana piggybacked on the Olympics
buzz to present an exciting, fresh and
timely campaign that included a Gold
Medal prize for the future winner – a trip
to Las Vegas.
Agents were invited to the event and told
something was going to be announced,
but no details were released. As they
entered the meeting they were handed
gift bags with the popular red Olympic
mittens, a raffle ticket for Olympic
hockey jerseys, and they were thanked for
coming to hear the big announcement.
“The values of the Olympics with
training, support and pride were the same
values we have as an organization, so the
campaign launch with a tie to the Olympics was a perfect match,” says Wadey.
To keep agents’ interest throughout the
five-month campaign, JOLT Marketing
developed a full communication strategy,
providing regular results charts for
agents. This kept the sales team motivated and also provided regular sales
strategies, tips, and humour to help keep
everyone engaged.
“Throughout the campaign we would
receive updates, insight and information that helped us realize the value of
working with a professional company
that specializes in running campaigns
such as this,” says Mike Hall, president
of Oriana Financial.
To wrap things up, Oriana invited agents
to the Win A Free Mortgage Payment
contest draw and luncheon where winners
learned they would receive $1,000
towards their next mortgage payment.
“With this campaign everyone won,”
sums up Hall. “Sales results were spectacular, company morale increased, our
clients were rewarded, and new recruits
easily understood the level of support
that Oriana provides for them.” BB
Vol 3 Issue 4 • 23
Industry Q&A
By Roma Ihnatowycz
Think that exhibiting at trade shows
is as simple as setting up a booth and selling
your services? Think again. Internationally renowned
exhibit and trade show expert Barry Siskind weighs in on
the best way to showcase your company
Barry Siskind is president and founder of the International Training and Management
Company (ITMC) and is internationally recognized as an expert in trade and consumer
shows. He is also the best-selling author of a number of trade show books, including his
latest book, Powerful Exhibit Marketing.
BrokerBiz: A trade show seems like a
fairly straightforward affair – why would
an exhibitor need additional help?
Siskind: The costs aren’t getting any
less, so the need to actually produce a
return on your investment is so great
now that it is not just ‘business as usual.’
Exhibiting is not what professionals do
every day of their life – it happens once
or twice or three times a year. And it’s
really, really difficult. It’s physically and
emotionally stressful, and it requires a
tremendous amount of understanding of
what this medium is all about.
24 • brokerbiz
At the end of the day it requires actually
sitting down and asking yourself, after
an exhibition, what worked and whether
you got a return on investment. Many
exhibitors don’t know how to do that.
A lot of people throw their hands up
and say ‘I can’t possibly measure ROI
because I don’t actually sell anything,’
which is dumb because of course they
don’t sell anything – most shows are
not selling shows; most shows are lead
generators. You wouldn’t do anything
else without setting some objectives and
having some measurements – why is it
any different here?
BB: Can you expand a bit on the topic
of effective follow-up?
Siskind: Follow-up is what gets
messed up the most. The tendency is to
get overwhelmed by all of the things back
at your office that you weren’t taking
care of because you were at a trade show.
The best time for follow-up after a trade
show is really the next business day. The
longer you wait to contact visitors after
the show, the more this visitor’s real life
takes over – they forget, they cool off.
So my suggestion is to put together a
plan [before the show] so that you can
Industry Q&A
get back to this visitor the next business
day, even it it’s nothing more than to say
thank you for coming by to the show,
something as simple as that.
BB: How should exhibitors assess the
effectiveness of their participation in a
trade show?
Siskind: Generally we use two
measurements in trade shows, return
on investment (ROI) and return on
objectives, or ROO. What exhibitors
are looking for is ROO because the
return cannot be monetized. So let’s
say the objective was to get 25 good
quality leads at a show – and this needs
to be determined upfront, before the
event – then you need to ask yourself the
question, how will I measure that? So
the next step in the process is to actually
develop the tools that you can take with
you to this show to do this measurement.
The biggest mistake you can make is to
return to a show with the same thing
year after year after year. This is where
benchmarks help.
BB: What are the biggest mistakes that
you see tied to the actual displays?
Siskind: One of the biggest mistakes
is going back to the same show year
after year with exactly the same display.
That’s boring and visitors don’t want that.
They want to be excited, they want to
be stimulated, they want an experience.
If the experience you are offering them
is that of boredom, what’s the point? I’m
not saying that exhibitors have to throw
everything in the garbage and start fresh
every year. But you have to be constantly
looking at the display to find what’s
working. Keep that stuff and get rid of
stuff that’s not working. You need to have
this continuous improvement process.
The other big mistake exhibitors make
is trying to tell people too much with
their display. The primary purpose
“Follow-up is
what gets messed
up the most. The
tendency is to get
overwhelmed by all
of the things back at
your office that you
weren’t taking care of
because you were at a
trade show”
Barry Siskind, ITMC
of the booth is to attract attention.
It doesn’t sell anything and it doesn’t
create a brand message and it doesn’t
create presence or awareness. All it does
is it gets people’s attention. And it’s
very tough to do because getting the
attention of a whole bunch of visitors
who have no attention span is really
difficult. At the big shows, you get to a
point where nothing else goes in. You
are just so overloaded with information.
BB: Once you have a visitor’s
attention, then what?
Siskind: Then it’s all up to the
people, who in my opinion are the
most important part of the whole show
experience. And the people manning the
booth often have no idea why they are
there. So not having a really clear idea
of why they are there and really clear
objectives is probably the first mistake
we see.
Secondly, not having mastered the very
specific skills you need in order to work
at a booth properly is another mistake.
Working at a booth is different than
selling outside, where you can sit down
at a client’s office. The primary reason
for that is time – you are seeing too
many people in too short of a period
of time. Staff needs to understand that
there is this time pressure placed on
them. They need to hone their skills …
so that they can work in this unique,
high-pressure environment.
BB: How is the event environment
different today than it was ten years ago?
Siskind: In 2010 we are dealing with
an entirely different generation that is
coming to tradeshows than we were in
1990. When a manager says to say to me,
‘Oh my staff is great at this – they’ve been
doing shows for years,’ those are probably
the ones that scare me the most. I see
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Vol 3 Issue 4 • 25
Industry Q&A
a lot of exhibitors treating the public
that is walking by their booth as if they
were still in 1990. But in 1990 the
primary audience was made up of baby
boomers. In 2010, the audience is made
up of Gen X-ers. They are different,
and one reason they are different is that
they are further along in the buying
cycle before they ever get to the show.
They know more about products and
services before they get there. And
they’ve also weeded out those exhibitors
they don’t want to deal with. They are
very, very comfortable looking stuff up
on the Internet, and on social networks.
So the whole face of it has changed
because of technology.
BB: Is that a positive development for
Siskind: I think it’s a very positive
thing for exhibitors who embrace
social media. They can use that tool to
their benefit. They can create a sense
of excitement with what is going on
in the booth. They can post videos of
people who have come to their booth
on YouTube or send them out to their
social network. ‘Look at the excitement
that is going on here. So-and-so
dropped by and here’s what they had
to say.’ That’s cool. So someone that is
walking around that may not have put
you on the short list of places to visit all
of a sudden gets a message from you.
You are building some excitement that
could very well motivate someone to
come over and visit.
BB: So clearly exhibitors should
be getting on the social media
Siskind: Yes, and the other trick
to social media is using the right one.
Not everybody is on Facebook and not
everybody is on Twitter. So one of the
things that I advise my clients is that if
they don’t know which platform their
customers are using, use the trade show
as an opportunity to find that out. If I
find that 90 per cent of my customers
are on Twitter, then I wouldn’t waste any
time with LinkedIn. Then you can also
find out what your customers are saying
26 • brokerbiz
about you because they are all talking
back and forth. Gen X-ers are really
comfortable doing that. Social media is
a wonderful tool for exhibitors to help
them do their job better.
BB: What about when people
approach a booth? What is the best
way to interact with them?
Siskind: People manning a booth
need to have a pro-active approach and
they have to have the right attitude.
When visitors have been surveyed, the
thing that they dislike the most is pushy
salespeople. So I advise a client not to
come to a trade show as a salesperson.
Visitors don’t want to be sold
something, they want to be informed.
So to me it’s healthier and easier to play
the role of host. This is your place of
business for three or four days, someone
has come in, welcome them. This
also opens the door to non-salespeople
working in the booth.
BB: And after welcoming them, what
is the next step?
Siskind: I would then teach you
how to engage a visitor in a meaningful
conversation and then find a little bit
more about them – who they are, why
are they there and what are they looking
for. Because the reality is that you already
know what you are selling but you don’t
know what they are buying. In 2010, the
real purpose of trade shows is all about
engagement. How do we engage ourselves
with our customers? How do we form
that community between customers and
us? So what we need to do is we need to
engage them in the process. What kind
of things are they looking for, what do we
offer, where do we go in the future?
The very best [outcome] you can get is
to have somebody who has been engaged
with you, who has a really good feeling
about you. Psychologists tell us that
people remember the experience long
after they have forgotten the detail. The
visitor needs to feel that you have reached
out and engaged them in conversation,
that you are listening to them and their
concerns rather than just pitching a
product at them.
Industry Q&A
For the visitor
What should you be considering when visiting a trade
show? Event expert Barry Siskind explains:
“The first thing visitors need to do is they need to get
focused. Before they ever step foot on the show floor they
really need to ask themselves, ‘Why am I coming to the
show?’ They need to identify that. If they are coming to
learn, the next step is, what do you want to learn? They can
say how people are using a certain service, or what the new
trends are. Then I would ask them, who’s going to teach
that to you?
Then I would take the show floor plan from the organizer’s
website ahead of time. The mistake that people often make
is they come to the show, grab the floor plan and just start
walking. I would tell them to get the plan ahead of time and
actually make a physical plan of how they will walk the show.
What that allows you to do is to look for clusters of people
you want to see. Rather than doing what most visitors do,
which is enter the front door and go to the right, what you
do is go straight to the cluster. So if your trip gets cut short,
or you run out of time, at least you have taken care of some
key issues.”
DLO-IMBA Ad Spring 09 Horiz r2.qxd
and Commercial
Purchase, Sale, Refinance
10:25 PM
Page 1
Private, Institutional
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Power of Sale, Foreclosure
Joint Venture & Other
Investor Agreements
De Francesca Law Office
Tel 416 778 4433 • Fax 416 778 4432 •
Vol 3 Issue 4 • 27
Brokers need to become
more vigilant about
managing risk exposure
if they want to avoid
escalating E&O premiums
and a continuing surge
in lawsuits
By Leslie Fallaise
hen the Mortgage Brokerages, Lenders and Administrators Act (MBLAA) came
into effect on July 1, 2008,
Errors and Omissions (E&O) insurance
rates were stable and had even begun to
decline. The baseline premium for a small
brokerage was between $750 and $1000
per annum and the purchase of coverage
was completely voluntary on the part of
the broker. Three main factors impacted
how the annual premium was calculated:
the amount of revenue (in commissions,
fees, etc.) that the firm earned in a year,
how many agents they had, and the
amount of coverage the broker chose to
Then the “perfect storm” hit. The
new legislation made E&O insurance
mandatory, and aggressive plaintiff
lawyers, working for borrowers and
lenders, took that opportunity to test
claims against it. In addition to the new
legislation making E&O compulsory,
coverage was made retroactive, which
allowed brokerages to file a claim on
services rendered before the effective
date of their first E&O policy (which for
many brokerages was July 1, 2008 when
it became mandatory). And then there
was the global economic downturn and
falling real estate prices. E&O claims
filed against our industry soared.
In the six-month period prior to the
MBLAA going into effect there were
very few claims. However from July
1, 2008 to December 31, 2009 there
was an astronomic increase in claims
frequency. Many brokers were hit with
unprecedented annual premium increases
when their policies renewed. Several tried
28 • brokerbiz
to shop their coverage to help ease the
financial burden.
Annual E&O premiums are now
assessed utilizing an expanded number
of underwriting criteria. Two important
criteria are whether the broker does
construction loans, as opposed to already
constructed properties, and whether
the brokerage arranges mortgages with
private lenders. If they do, then the
type of private lender and the type of
origination process undertaken becomes
important E&O underwriting criteria.
The insurers tend to classify private
lenders under one of the following:
private lending institutions like MICS
and trusts, individuals who want to
invest their personal wealth in mortgages,
and brokerage houses that underwrite
mortgages with their own or related
company funds.
When an E&O underwriter evaluates a
brokerage in order to insure it properly,
they look at the highest risk exposure,
which is the individual private lender
who wants to invest their funds in
mortgages. The highest rate of claims
occurs within this category of lender
because these private lenders often have
limited underwriting experience and
no problem convincing an aggressive
plaintiff solicitor that they relied solely
on the mortgage broker to look after
their best interest. The claim will state
the broker failed the duty of care they
owed the lender, and subsequently
cost them their life savings. In these
scenarios it can be extremely difficult for
the defence to prove the plaintiff had
a long history engaging in this type of
private lending because there is minimal
documentation to support the mortgage
broker. It is up to the broker to ensure
their risk management practices are
effective to appropriately manage this
type of risk.
Consider this scenario: a young couple
with stable jobs in a union-protected
environment and a strong beacon
score come to a private lender for a
mortgage on their first home. The deal
is properly completed, the mortgage is
done and six months or a year passes,
with payments made on time. Then
they both get laid off and the property
ends up as a power of sale and is sold
below the original purchase price. The
individual private lender then sues the
mortgage broker because the investment
did not provide the return that was
originally anticipated. This speaks to
the importance of risk management
practices and documenting your file
inside the brokerage.
Another area of concern is construction
loans for financing the building of
condominiums or development of
vacation properties. The economy sours,
money dries up, and an effort is made
to sell the unfinished development with
no success. Major issues with faulty
construction financing include poorly
done or erroneous appraisals, too few
offers to purchase at the beginning of
the deal, a mismanaged construction
process, poor or no documentation
between parties to the transaction and,
lastly, a project so large in scope that it
exceeds the capacity of the broker. The
field is wide open for suits against the
Some solid recommendations to
mortgage brokerages to help mitigate
their chances of a claim are:
1. Don’t try to be all things to all people.
are often launched many years after the
mortgage was arranged.
Documentation is king, documentation
is critical • Investor/lender disclosure statements
must be properly completed. Always
make certain that there is one in every
single file. This is a wonderful risk
management tool.
• Appraisals! Always get a third party
appraisal, a letter of transmittal and
always include both in the file.
• Basic, competent and correct document
storage and handling. Be absolutely
certain you know the statue of
limitations in your area/market. Claims
Diligent practices
The standard E&O policy responds
to protect all agents licensed under the
brokerage, past or present. It is incumbent
upon the brokerages to be diligent in their
hiring practices. Agents should be made
to understand the potential risks they
expose the brokerage to. Brokerages are
encouraged to develop consistent policies
and procedures to make their agents
accountable. One example could be to
hold the agent responsible for the policy
deductible through their contract with the
brokerage, should a claim be made as a
result of one of their files.
Then, what are the brokerages
policies and procedures surrounding
accountability of the agent/broker
once they have moved on to another
brokerage or out of the business entirely?
• Be consistent in how you note your files.
Standard operating procedures and
best practices should be developed,
updated and properly maintained in
strict accordance with the MBLAA.
• Anyone involved in mortgage
origination in the brokerage should
sign a copy of your policies and
procedures manual to indicate that
they have read and understand the
documents and agree to follow them.
This should be rigorously followed.
The practice of being consistent is very
important should you find yourself
defending a claim.
In 2008, when E&O became mandatory,
there were seven companies approved by the
Financial Services Commission of Ontario
(FSCO) to provide E&O insurance to
the mortgage brokerage industry. There
are only five still active in the marketplace
today, and of these, some have restrictions
and limitations on their underwriting of
mortgage brokering E&O insurance. A
growing concern is that more insurance
providers may abandon this market,
reducing the price competiveness for the
mortgage brokerage industry even more.
If the claims frequency continues at the
levels experienced since July 1, 2008, you
will likely see fewer insurance companies
in the marketplace willing to write E&O
insurance for our industry. Accordingly,
you will see premiums continue to
dramatically increase.
2. Do not undertake a deal that is out of
your depth of knowledge or experience.
3. Know your professional limits and
stay within them.
4. You are not a lawyer, you are a
mortgage broker.
5. Proper communication is a must.
E&O insurance represents what it says
it is…there are errors and omissions.
Omission-based claims are more
challenging to defend because they
allege that the mortgage broker should
have done something and failed to
do so. A claim will state the broker
knew or ought to have known, in their
capacity as a professional, what was to
be done or what was expected of them
and they failed to do so.
Mortgage brokerages must become
serious about managing their risk
exposure for private lending more
effectively. They must mitigate the
chances of a claim and make it easier
to defend a claim by having proper
policies and procedures in place, good
document management, etc. With
this commitment in place, premiums
will hopefully stay at current levels,
and providers will stay in the market
place. This is crucial for a strong
and competitive errors and omissions
insurance marketplace.
Leslie Fallaise is a mortgage
broker with Redwood
Mortgage Corp. and the
executive editor of IMBA’s
BrokerBiz magazine.
A Non-Bank
A Non-Bank
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or Steve
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Tel: 635-0221
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1244 1244
[email protected]
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Ottawa, Ontario
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Vol 3 Issue 4 • 29
Why use a
By Liz Katynski
n this issue of BrokerBiz, we asked a few members of
IMBA to share their top reasons for suggesting people
use a mortgage broker. This is what they told us.
Nick Da Silva, Mortgage Broker
Director of Mortgage Operations
Northwood Mortgage Ltd. (Toronto)
“Number one is convenience. Mortgage
brokers are willing to travel. They come
to you and meet with you, to offer
one-stop shopping. We market your
mortgage deal to 14 A lenders. We get
pricing on a daily basis and we see better
pricing. When people shop around by
themselves, they have to find their best
offer and make the deals.
I am an ex-banker and I know that as a
mortgage broker, nine out of 10 times
my wholesale prices beat the banks. We
beat bank rates the majority of the time.
As a broker, I can give a better deal than
I could give when I worked in a branch.
Also, mortgage brokers offer specialty
products in umbrella programs like
construction financing. Not all banks
want to do that.
We know how to get the best deal. The
key reasons are that banks and financial
institutions have limits on the discounts
they can offer. We don’t have that. We
30 • brokerbiz
go to the table with 14 banks and see
who offers the best price. There is no
negotiation. Our customers get the best
deal. They don’t care which bank or
institution is offering it. A mortgage is
not a tangible product. The best pricing
is the bottom line. They are looking
out for themselves, not the bank. They
understand they are number one.”
Baljinder Lailna, Mortgage Broker
Greater Toronto Mortgages
“Consulting a mortgage broker has
several benefits. First of all it is a benefit
for the client because the broker is
working for the client not the lender.
As he is always working for the benefit
of the client, the mortgage broker can
understand the needs of the clients and
put forward the deal to the right lender
who can fulfill the client’s needs.
Mortgage brokers deal with a number of
primary, secondary and private lenders.
Clients can get all sorts of services
under one roof. For example, if a client
cannot qualify for an A deal, then the
broker can negotiate with a B lender or a
private lender.
Mortgage brokers work flexible hours
and can meet clients at their choice of
time, even on the weekend or late in
the evening. Sometimes people do not
communicate well in English and feel
more comfortable in their own language.
In this case, they can find a broker who
speaks their language and can explain to
them in their language.
Mortgage brokers are dealing with
conventional mortgages, high ratio
mortgages, private mortgages,
commercial mortgages, hotel, motel, gas
station, business loans, etc. In a bank, a
personal banker cannot do all of these
things so it is very easy and comfortable
for the clients to deal with one person
for all their needs.
As well, mortgage brokers work
under FSCO so if a client has any
complaints, he can contact FSCO with
his concerns.”
Brian Matthey, Broker/Owner
The Mortgage Professionals (Kingston)
(Owned and operated by VERICO
Blackburn Financial Services Inc.)
“Today’s mortgage broker has to represent
so much more to a client to survive in the
new reality we are all about to face.
The professional mortgage broker
represents their clients’ interest, not the
interest of the lending institution, and
packages a mortgage for a client that
takes into account the client’s whole
financial picture and the client’s whole
financial plan.
If you are the professional mortgage
broker of tomorrow, you can answer the
question by stating to your clients the
following: A mortgage is likely the single
biggest loan you are ever likely to make.
I do not want to do your mortgage just
once. I want to be your mortgage partner
for life. I want you to know that you
can count on me to guide you in choosing
the best financial solution for you now
and to help you choose the best financing
options for you in the future as your life
circumstances dictate. My experience and
expertise allows me to ensure that your
mortgage fits with your financial plan now
and in the future.
I continually upgrade my skills and my
knowledge so that along the way I am in a
position to help educate you on changes that
take place in the mortgage market that may
provide an opportunity for you to save money.
I take my responsibility seriously because I
am a mortgage professional.”
an application in search of a necessary
approval, or to call upon our years of
experience with many private sources,
gives mortgage brokers many distinct
advantages over our colleagues who
must adhere to the rigid policies
of their employers and are thereby
restricted from being as creative as we
can be.
With so many families who can no
longer count on the lenders they have
always relied on for support, the silver
lining of today’s recessionary cloud
is clearly that this is a resourceful
mortgage broker’s finest hour.
Just ask anyone who’s recently bought a
three bedroom house for $50,000 with
no money down, or perhaps the family
we’ve rescued from a power-of-sale, or
orphaned mortgage situation.
Paul Ouellette, Mortgage Broker
Central Mortgage Associates Inc.
“Our ability to think beyond a singlesource lender’s guidelines, to multi-source
Chances are, they may have something
nice to say.” BB
We’re at home with
Canadian housing
CMHC & Conventional
Mortgages for:
Multi-Family Rental Properties
Senior’s Housing Projects
Commercial Properties
Construction Projects
Michael Lombard
At CMHC, we’ve been a leader in the Canadian
housing industry for more than half a century.
For industry tools and videos you’ve never seen
before and helpful information you can share with
your clients, visit
CMHC. Everything you need to open new doors.
Vice-President & Regional Manager Ontario
[email protected]
Suite 1801-130 Adelaide St. West
Toronto, ON M5H 3P5
Vol 3 Issue 4 • 31
Community Focus
Eye on the
By Nestor Gula
Mortgage professional Charles Bristoll gains
recognition and accolades for the active
volunteer role he plays in his community
family man, a successful businessman and an energetic
volunteer: when it comes to making important life
choices, Charles Bristoll likes to keep his plate full.
It’s no wonder then that Bristoll was recognized as the recipient of this
year’s IMBA Community Service Award, which he received at the
association’s annual conference in April.
Bristoll has his own mortgage lending and brokerage company,
CENTUM Equity Access Corp., as well as Referral Only Realty Inc.
However, his successful professional life doesn’t stop him from playing
an active role in his community, which he does with an equal dose of
passion and determination.
Much of Bristoll’s volunteer work has revolved around the Caledon
Chamber of Commerce, where he was president for two years running
and now occupies the post of past president. In this capacity, Bristoll has
played a pivotal role in broadening the Chamber’s involvement in building
and improving business activity in Caledon, a town north of Toronto.
2010 IMBA Community Service
Award recipient Charles Bristoll
Bristoll helped organize networking meetings at the organization, and also,
on the suggestion of members, spearheaded more active lobbying efforts.
CALL 888-399-3366 or
32 • brokerbiz
Community Focus
“Some members came up to me and suggested that we should do more advocacy
work for business — that we should
lobby the government. I agreed with that
and we took that idea and started to get
involved with the growth debate and that
is what we are doing right now,” says
Bristoll. “We turned the Chamber into
more of an advocacy group as opposed to
just a social group.”
These efforts have helped advocate the
interests of businesses in the region,
which is facing some tough questions
tied to growth and development, explains
Bristoll. “In Caledon, there has been a
big problem with growth right now and
it has been around for the last couple of
years. Caledon has been growing and
growing [but] Council has frozen growth
in Bolton, which is Caledon’s economic
engine. There is a big battle in the public
whether there should be growth at all in
Bolton,” says Bristoll.
Eyeing new options
While pleased and proud of his contribution to this effort, the 45-year-old Bristoll
is now looking for new avenues to further
his volunteer work. Next on the agenda
is offering help to local hospitals, or one
hospital in particular, the Headwaters
Hospital in Orangeville. While the exact
role he will play has yet to be determined,
Bristoll is eyeing his options.
of assessment, to food banks, to hockey,
to whatever,” he says. “A hundred here,
a hundred bucks there, it all adds up. I
rarely say no.”
While the motivation for anyone’s good
work is often multifaceted, Bristoll
points to travels in his youth as his initial
inspiration. He readily travelled the globe
-- Europe, the Far East, the Middle East,
Africa, the Caribbean – as part of his
Bristoll was
recognized as the
recipient of this year’s
IMBA Community
Service Award, which
he received at the
association’s annual
conference in April
work at his family’s protective clothing business. Coming into contact with
people less fortunate than him made him
reflect on his own circumstances, and
started him thinking about sharing his
good fortune with others.
“Having seen all these places, it’s easy to see
why we are so lucky to live here Canada.
I feel that Canada, without question, is
the best country on earth,” notes Bristoll.
“There are a lot of people out there that do
not have the same background or upbringing that I had, I feel very fortunate. I like
to share this. I like to share what I can – to
show my appreciation.”
In line with this, sharing his business
expertise is also on Bristoll’s agenda, and
he often conducts information seminars, in particular on the Credit Bureau,
at Chamber of Commerce functions,
conferences, community centers and local
high schools.
For this mortgage professional, his working
day doesn’t end at the office. What happens after work is just as important. BB
“There are people in hospitals that are
sick and are more deserving of volunteer
work than the area where I have presently
focused my volunteer work,” says Bristoll.
“I will be helping at the Headwaters
Hospital here in Orangeville. I’ve been in
there, my wife has been in there and my
family has been in there and it is a really
great place. I’ve met some volunteers
there and the nurses can’t do everything.”
As a successful businessman, Bristoll
also supports many charities that come
around to his door, as well as local community sports programs. Together with
his wife and three children, Bristoll’s
family is active in the local hockey and
soccer leagues, and Bristoll readily admits
to sharing a large part of his earnings
with worthwhile causes. “It is fair to
say, I donate probably more than half of
what I make, what I show in my notice
Vol 3 Issue 4 • 33
Career Corner
Looking for new opportunities in the industry? In this new section, BrokerBiz provides news and
information on professional opportunities available to mortgage brokers and agents in Ontario
Homeguard Funding
Homeguard Funding Ltd. (Verico) is a full service mortgage brokerage that has been in operation since 1983.
Our president, Wayne Sudsbury, is a past president of
IMBA. We are seeking to expand our mortgage brokerage
company and are looking for mortgage agents.
All inquiries can be directed to Martin Marshall, Ontario
Sales Manager at [email protected] or by
phone at 416-702-3942.
Looking to expand
your brokerage?
Take advantage of your Career Corner in BrokerBiz and
place your particulars here. For more information, please
contact Cindy Smith, Operations Manager,
at [email protected], 1 877 564 4622.
If your company is interested in submitting information to IMBA’s Career Corner, please contact
Cindy Smith at [email protected], 416-252-4622 ext. 1.
AGF Trust Company........................33
Applied Business Software Inc......27
Bridgewater Bank..........................15
Canada Guaranty Mortgage
Insurance Company
........................... Inside Back Cover
Canadian Western Trust.................25
Davis & Henderson........................12
De Francesca Law Office...............27
Dominion Lending Centres..............5
Effort Trust.....................................20
Equitable Trust.................................9
Firm Capital...................................29
CHIP – HomEquity Bank...................4
C M H C..........................................31
FirstLine Mortgages
.........................Outside Back Cover
First National Financial LP.............15
34 • brokerbiz
Foremost Financial Corporation....21
Genworth Financial Canada...........11
Home Trust.......................................3
National Bank of Canada...............26
Optimum Mortgage........................22
Peoples Trust.................................31
Pillar Financial Services Inc...........18
Shapiro Cho...................................13
Solidifi Inc........................................7
Vector Financial Services Ltd.
Verico Canada.......Inside Front Cover
Aldo Aragon
Underwriting Manager
Speaking with a decision-maker the first time,
every time.
“At Canada Guaranty, we make it our priority to ensure all calls
to the National Underwriting Centre are answered directly by
an underwriter. This allows us to address important questions
immediately so that our partners can respond to their borrowers,
that much sooner.”
- Aldo Aragon, Underwriting Manager
Canada Guaranty Mortgage Insurance Company
From application to approval, our dedicated underwriting team
is committed to helping you find the right solutions. Contact
us today and discover how we’re making mortgage insurance
better, one deal at a time!
National Underwriting Centre: 1.877.244.8422
Canada Guaranty Mortgage Insurance Company
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