One-on-One with Pacific Mortgage Group’s Ron Swift

Ron-SwiftPacific Mortgage Group (PMG) CEO, Ron Swift, oversees one of two operations in the mortgage industry whereby the same company owns both a brokerage and a CMHC-approved lender. (CIBC is the other, via its ownership of Mortgage Centre.)

As a result, Ron is uniquely positioned to see things from both a lender’s perspective and a broker’s standpoint. That, and his two decades of industry experience, made us eager to get his take on how he sees our industry evolving.

We asked Ron about topics ranging from consumer loyalty to lenders to the ability of non-bank lenders to compete in the conventional mortgage market.

Pacific-NARon also spoke about his firm’s new brokerage model, which pays brokers splits of up to 100%, based on the volume they commit to PMG’s in-house lender, Radius Financial. It’s a model that challenges traditional payouts and brokerage margins, so we were sure to ask how he thought his competitors might react.

Click to Play Interview

(Length: 18 min)

Interview transcript:
Pacific Mortgage Group – CEO, Ron Swift

Prior related story:
Ron Swift, Pacific Mortgage Group’s New CEO

Robert McLister, CMT

  1. Hi Folks, Whenever we write about related companies we like to note the following for full disclosure. CMT staff includes mortgage planners with Mortgage Architects who are, in turn, shareholders of Pacific Mortgage Group and This article should not be construed as a positive or negative opinion on the future prospects of these companies.

  2. Great interview, especially the part about what good advice is worth. I’ve often asked that. People have no idea how to value a mortgage expert’s experience and knowledge. It’s all rate, rate, rate. You never realize that you got bad advice until it’s too late. Look at the potential interest and penalty and fee savings over five years. Advice that helps you avoid hidden fine print and helps you pay down your debt faster can easily be worth 20 basis points or more. That is compared to a bank/broker who doesn’t advise you properly.

  3. Good interview Rob.
    The key development I’m watching for in next week’s budget are protective laws pertaining to covered bonds that are currently under a contractual framework. Without a new law and protective guarantees to bond holders, bonds issued will be limited on the open market as many institutional and pension funds are restricted from purchasing bonds under a non-legislative framework and less then an AAA rating. From my understanding, the government will require legislation passed in several jurisdictions across Canada to enact these new laws. This will be a big hurdle to pass.

  4. oops, same news as yesterday. Thought CMHC is about to increase mortgage insurance fees, based on the phrasing of the article.
    Who knows, they might just do that?

  5. I would pay 1/10% extra for good advice tops, but I’d have to be sure it would save me just as much, if not more.

  6. This is going to be the biggest shock of the Canadian Mortgage history! The Pacific Mortgage Group has acquired Firstline Mortgages from CIBC.
    The deal was announced to the key senior CIBC management team this morning. MCAP was the other bidder. But Pacific won the bidding. Announcement will come sometimes next week.

  7. Regarding information that FirstLine Mortgages has been sold and that announcement has already been made internally to CIBC’s senior management, we are told by officials that this is absolutely not the case.
    The process CIBC announced on its Q1 conference call regarding FirstLine Mortgages has not concluded and no final outcomes have been communicated, internally or otherwise.

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