Frances Hinojosa, Glenn MacLaren and Peter Lirantzis used to sell against brokers as BMO mortgage specialists. Now they are brokers, having just left the bank to join Dominion Lending Centres (DLC).
DLC pegs their annual volume at $300 million, so they are a mega team by bank standards. We spoke briefly with Frances Hinojosa on why she left Canada’s 4th biggest bank to become a broker.
What does being a broker now give you that the bank did not?
By becoming a broker, we can further expand our solution-based lending by having access to multiple lenders, as well as “B” lending, private funds, commercial lending, etc. We felt this would allows us to provide options to clients that may not fit the traditional banking model.
How much of a benefit was the bank’s powerful brand and how do you feel about losing that brand?
While it is always nice to have a brand to stand behind, we felt BMO Bank of Montreal did not actively promote its Mortgage Specialist channel. That being said, the brand wasn’t as powerful for our business model. We all felt we were our own brand, so therefore by moving over to the broker world we didn’t feel we really lost anything by changing the brand.
Banks quote varying degrees of discretionary mortgage rates based on a customer’s profile and his/her negotiating ability. Will your rate quoting strategy change now that you are a broker?
We don’t feel our rate quoting strategy will change…At the end of the day, if the mortgage product the client is set-up with does not meet their financial goals, the rate is irrelevant…We have always built our business model on a mortgage plan (similar to a financial plan), which provides clients with a long term strategy to reduce their debt. This, not the starting rate, ultimately saves the client the most amount of interest.
What were the three top factors attracting you to DLC?
The top three things that attracted us to DLC was the extensive marketing/advertising initiative, recognition of their brand and top tier status with major lenders.